In 8 days Ohio State is looking to make our great state proud when they play Navy in the 2014 season opener. Since 1934, 22 players have worn No. 8 for Ohio State.
Today's article will cover the careers of Jim McDonald, Earl Langhurst, Stanley Jackson, Steve Bellisari and Noah Spence.
Two players who wore today's number during the mid 1990s and early 2000s caused me great hate for the No. 8. I'm hoping Noah Spence will help end my disdain for this digit.
|Player||Worn||All-American||All-B1G||Captain||Academic AA||Ac. All-B1G||Letter|
|Steve Bellisari||1998-2001||2000, 2001||1998-2001|
|DeVier Posey||2008-11||2008-09, 2011|
Jim McDonald, QB (1935-1937)
Born: 1915 (Springfield, Ohio)
Died: 1997 (Knoxville, TN)
The Buckeyes were 18-6 with McDonald on the team.
1935 Big Ten Title.
1935 Defeated That Team 38-0.
1936 Defeated That Team 21-0.
1937 Defeated That Team 21-0.
1937 All-Big Ten.
McDonald's Ohio State career per ohiostatebuckeyes.com:
Jim McDonald enjoyed the rare honor of being selected captain of both the football and basketball teams. He played quarterback and linebacker in football and guard in basketball. After leaving OSU, McDonald played two years with the Detroit Lions. He later became head football coach at the University of Tennessee.
McDonald puts excitement into a PAT and plays basketball for the Buckeyes per Wikipedia:
McDonald's most memorable play that year was only worth one point. He was kicking a point after touchdown against Northwestern and the ball was blocked. The holder, Mike Kabealo, grabbed the ball, pitched it back to McDonald. McDonald ran the ball around the right side for the point. The final score was 7–0.
McDonald was also a three-year starter as a guard on the Ohio State basketball team from 1936 to 1938. As a senior, he served as team captain.
McDonald's career after Ohio State per Wikipedia:
McDonald was selected by the Philadelphia Eagles as the second pick in the 1938 NFL Draft, but never played for that team.
He played two seasons with the Detroit Lions, picking up a career total of 80 yards.
McDonald was an assistant football coach at the University of Tennessee under head coach Bowden Wyatt from 1955 to 1962.
He succeeded Wyatt as head coach in 1963, but stayed at that position for only one year (5-5).
McDonald remained at Tennessee as an assistant athletic director.
Earl Langhurst, FB (1938-1940)
Born: 1919 (Willard, Ohio)
High School: Willard
Died: 2008 (Willard)
The Buckeyes were 14-9-1 with Langurst on the team.
1939 Big Ten Title.
Earl Langhurst and his career in sports per sanduskyregister.com
He was Willard's first high school state track champion, and in his junior year of football led the state in scoring with 130 points.
At The Ohio State University he was a three year football letterman. As a sophomore in 1938, he was Ohio State's MVP and led the Big Ten in scoring. He was a member of the 1939 Big Ten Championship Team and elected captain in 1940.
He had a long and illustrious football officiating career highlighted by 12 years as a Big Ten Head Linesman and worked the Rose, Sugar and Orange Bowls.
Stanley Jackson, QB (1993-1997)
Born: 1975 (Paterson, NJ)
High School: Paterson Catholic
The Buckeyes were 51-11-1 with Jackson on the team.
1993 Big Ten Title.
1996 Big Ten Title.
1993 Defeated BYU 28-21 to win the Holiday Bowl.
1997 Defeated No. 4 Arizona State 20-17 to win the Rose Bowl.
Stanley "Run Around" Jackson is what my friends and I called him during his time with the Buckeyes. Had "Run Around" been at Ohio State a few years later I probably wouldn't have the hate for the No. 8 as I do now. In fact Jackson would have saved us from the next sad chapter in the story of No. 8 that you will read about next.
With John Cooper and Mike Jacobs implementing a dual-quarterback system it made the fans choose sides. Unfortunately for Jackson it was
clear to everyone watching the games, except Cooper, that Joe Germaine was the better quarterback.
Here is an excerpt from an article by Teddy Greenstein of the Chicago Tribune about Mike Jacobs and his use of two quarterbacks (MY THOUGHTS)
"If you have a kid at tailback who's having an off day, you have someone else to lean on," he said. "You do that at every other position. But if you do it at quarterback, everyone talks about it. The bottom line is it's a good situation for us." (NO, IT WAS NOT A GOOD SITUATION)
That's an easy sell. The ninth-ranked Buckeyes, who face No. 4 Florida State on Thursday in the Sugar Bowl, are 21-3 over the last two years. Jackson has started all but one game during that stretch (a 1996 loss to Michigan), with Germaine carrying the baton for the final laps.
Neither player likes the predicament. But neither can quibble with the results.
"I wouldn't want anyone to go through what we've been through," Jackson said. "No one likes to platoon. Everyone wants to be the hero."
Said Germaine: "It is very hard, but the most important thing is to win." (AFTER GERMAINE COMES IN TO SAVE THE DAY HE IS THE HERO)
It's well known that Jackson and Germaine have different styles on the field. Germaine is the classic drop-back passer with an accurate arm and the patience needed to find Ohio State's explosive receivers.
Germaine's passing numbers this season (a 64.7 percent completion rate, 1,674 yards and 15 touchdowns) were excellent--and significantly better than Jackson's, who completed 60 percent of his throws for 1,021 yards and eight touchdowns. But unlike Germaine, Jackson is a scrambler. He ran for 339 yards, if you don't include what he lost on sacks.
"Like the fans, we constantly evaluate them," Jacobs said. "We'll have different guys in the staff room throwing out positives and negatives, just like for tailbacks or offensive tackles."
(YOUR CRAPPY EVALUATION SYSTEM COST OHIO STATE A SHOT AT A NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP IN 1996 AND 1997)
Steve Bellisari, QB (1998-2001)
Born: 1980 (Boca Raton, FL)
High School: Boca Raton
The Buckeyes were 32-16 with Bellisari on the team.
The Buckeyes were 20-15 with Bellisari as the starter.
1998 Defeated No. 8 Texas A&M 24-14 to win the Sugar Bowl.
The three seasons that Bellisari was quarterback for the Buckeyes were hard for me to watch.
Every time he dropped back I would anticipate him throwing his patented punterception.
Bellisari continued to lower my expectations for anyone wearing the No. 8 on an Ohio State jersey.
After watching Run Around and Bellisari play for nine seasons I truly believed that the No. 8 should have been banned at Ohio State.
One good thing to come from Bellisari's reign of terror is that it brought Jim Tressel and the 2002 season to Ohio State.
My view of Bellisari reinforced by Wikipedia:
Bellisari, a special teams player and a defensive back his first year, replaced Joe Germaine as the Ohio State starting quarterback in 1999.
In contrast to the accurate Germaine, Bellisari is remembered for a tendency to throw interceptions...Bellisari experienced an increasingly controversial tenure as Ohio State's starting quarterback, culminating in a two-game suspension at the end of his senior season following an arrest for drunk driving.
He was re-instated to travel with the team to the Outback Bowl against South Carolina, where he finished his career as a substitute, leading Ohio State back from a large deficit to tie the game before giving up an interception that allowed South Carolina to kick a winning field goal.
Noah Spence, DL (2012-Present)
High School: Bishop McDevitt (PA)
The Buckeyes are 24-2 with Spence on the team.
2012 Undefeated Season.
2012 B1G Ten Leaders Title.
24 Game winning streak.
2-0 against That Team.
2013 Academic All-B1G.
Ohio State Overview: Noah Spence is a fine football player ... this true junior has played in 24 games through his first two seasons and he has started 13 times ... he is coming off a first-team all-Big Ten Conference season and he ranks second among current Buckeyes with 15.5 career tackles-for-loss and with 9.0 quarterback sacks ... Spence also ranks fourth among current Ohio State players with 64 career tackles ... he is a two-time OSU Scholar-Athlete and an Academic All-Big Ten Conference honoree who is majoring in communications.
2013 Season: Spence started 13 games for the Buckeyes at the defensive end position called the "viper" by Ohio State coaches (because the name is cool) ... he was named first-team all-Big Ten Conference (media) and second team by the coaches ... ranked second in the Big Ten in sacks with 8.0 and sixth in tackles-for-loss with 14.5 ... led the Buckeyes in sacks and sack yards (67) and also led in TFL yards (83) ... recorded 52 tackles on the season with two pass break-ups, four QB hurries, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery ... tied a career-best with six tackles vs. California and set personal bests in TFLs and sacks with three and two, respectively, vs. Penn State.
2012 Season: Noah played in 11 games as a true freshman, missing only the Nebraska game because of a minor injury ... despite a veteran defensive line corps in front of him, Spence was on the field for 256 plays and he gained valuable game reps with 237 plays on defense ... he totaled 12 tackles, including a quarterback sack for minus-20 yards in his initial game as a Buckeye, vs. Miami ... he also had a pass break-up.
Sources- The Ohio State Team Guide and Jason Priestas
98 days until The Game.