Building the Perfect Buckeye Quarterback From Stars of the Past

By Jeff Beck on April 28, 2014 at 1:00p
Winnin Roses

Last week we pieced together the perfect Buckeye wide receiver and running back. The two stories were an excuse to dig into footage of Buckeye greats and even drew the attention of an OSU legend (though not in the way I intended…apologies Mr. Galloway).

To round out the series on the offensive side of the ball, it’s time to Frankenstein the perfect Buckeye quarterback from pieces of stars past.

Vision: Troy Smith

Say what you will about Troy Smith’s last game in the Scarlet and Gray, but the kid was phenomenal for the better part of three years

Smith burst onto the scene in 2004, showcasing an impressive set of wheels and an uncanny ability to crush Wolverines under his thumb to the tune of 386 yards and 3 touchdowns.

2005 was more of the same as Smith threw for 2,282 yards and 16 TDs with another 611 yards and 11 TDs on the ground.

But, it was 2006 that made Troy a legend. Neglecting his legs in favor of incredible field vision, Smith consistently danced and spun out of tackles all while keeping his eyes downfield. He utilized his wheels to buy time, and his arm to make back-breaking throws, culminating in 2,542 yards and 30 TDs through the air and another 204 yards and 1 TD on the ground…oh and a Heisman.

Here’s a perfect example of Smith’s phenomenal field vision at work:

Arm: Joe Germaine / Bobby Hoying / Art Schlichter

If I'm looking at arms it’s hard to leave out any of the players above. Joe Germaine, Bobby Hoying and Art Schlichter all made names for themselves via their cannons.

Germaine sits atop the Buckeye record books for passing yards in a season with 3,330 (1998). The two players behind him are (you guessed it) Hoying (3,269 yards in 1995) and Schlichter (2,551 yards in 1981).

The three also claim the top three spots on the total passing yards in a career list with Schlichter tossing for 7,547, Hoying throwing for 7,232 and Germaine tallying 6,370.

That’s all you can ask for in terms of production from your signal caller, especially when all three had stellar running backs behind them (Germaine had Wiley, Hoying had Eddie and Schlichter had Tim Spencer).

Here are all three showing off the goods.



Ability to get it done: Craig Krenzel

Craig Krenzel will never be listed as one of the strongest, fastest or most athletic Buckeye quarterbacks of all-time, but that’s not going to stop me from putting him on my list. In a season where it was the world against Ohio State, Craig Krenzel simply GOT. IT. DONE.

Need a game-winning throw, a game-saving 4th and 14 or a national championship? Krenzel is your guy. Again and again Craig pulled the team up by their boot-straps to get a win. In no game was it more prevalent than the 2002 national championship. On a roster replete with stars like Maurice Clarett, Michael Jenkins and Chris Gamble it was Krenzel who came away with the championship MVP. Way to get it done Craig.

Size: Terrelle Pryor

Even as a freshman it was clear Terrelle Pryor was going to be one of the biggest Buckeye quarterbacks in recent memory. At 6’6’’ 235 lbs Pryor looked more tight end than signal caller. He put that size to good use immediately, creating a bruising back-field with running back Beanie Wells.

Again and again, Pryor used his frame to his advantage, often breaking opponents tackles or simply trucking them altogether. The Jeanette, PA native’s name litters the OSU record books but stats on a page don’t tell the size story. This does.

Scrambling: Cornelius Greene / Braxton Miller

There've been plenty of OSU quarterbacks that can get it done through the air, but only a few that could strike fear in the hearts of opponents on the ground. Legend of the past, Cornelius Greene and current Buckeye QB, Braxton Miller, are two such players.

From 1972-1975 Greene amassed 2,080 rushing yards, a number that puts him at 20 on Ohio State’s total rushing yards in a career list; impressive considering he had to compete with a guy named Archie Griffin for carries. Greene also sits at No. 2 on the list of 100-yard rushing games by a quarterback with 4.

Greene solidified himself in the record book, but current quarterback, Braxton Miller, is in the process of re-writing it. Since 2011 Miller has churned out 3,054 total rushing yards slotting him at No. 7 on the total rushing yards in a career list. The mark puts him just 714 yards behind Eddie George as the No. 2 rusher in Buckeye history.

In addition, Braxton has tallied 14 games with 100 or more rushing yards, pegging him as the only quarterback in OSU history to achieve that feat. At times Buckeye Nation has lost patience with Miller, but viewing his accomplishments through the lens of history proves the haters need to take a step back. Miller has cemented himself as the best Buckeye rushing quarterback in school history, and he still has a season to play.

Here’s Greene and Miller doing what they do best: making defenders look ridiculous.


These are the parts I’d use to make the ultimate Buckeye QB. I’m confident if I could Frankenstein these attributes together I’d have a Scarlet and Gray terror machine. Scientists, you’re officially on notice. Let’s make this happen.


Comments Show All Comments

Dean's picture

Germaine had Eddie, Hoying had Wiley

I think you got those flipped.

+1 HS
Buckeye in Illini country's picture


This, along with being a "winner", is the best attribute of the unathletic guy.  Similar to the grittiness, hard-nosed, high motor, and guy I would want my daughter to marry like Aaron Craft (just added that last one because I miss me some AC4 #swoon).

Columbus to Pasadena: 35 hours.  "We're on a road trip through the desert looking for strippers and cocaine... and Rose Bowl wins!"

+4 HS
Killer nuts's picture

Krenzel made plays when plays needed to be made. That's all you can ask from a QB

+4 HS
bedheadjc's picture

The shots he took against Miami...ouch. Draws and scrambles he was just getting killed. Got up and made them pay over and over.

+1 HS
Buckeye in Illini country's picture

Don't get me wrong, I love me some Craig Krenzel.  The attribute given to him is just like those described.  Sometimes people get carried away with calling people clutch; why can't they be that great the other 59 minutes of the game.

Columbus to Pasadena: 35 hours.  "We're on a road trip through the desert looking for strippers and cocaine... and Rose Bowl wins!"

buck i's picture

Frosted tips: Kirk Herbstreit


+18 HS
The Urban Legend's picture

we can't show any support for Kirk out of fear of everyone calling us homers 

The Legend continues

+12 HS
fear_the_nut70's picture

Hey UL, let's play a game--create a category where the answer would be Kirk Herbstreit.  Here are some suggestion:

Knack for losing to your Rival in Big Games

Sticking it to your Alma Matter in Voting after winning a BCS Bowl

What say you, I am sure we could come up with many, many, more.




+1 HS
IGotAWoody's picture

Who is the only OSU QB to become famous AFTER his forgettable playing career ended?

“The good life is a process, not a state of being. It is a direction, not a destination.” ~Carl Rogers

+3 HS
741's picture

Ridiculous shirt collars: Herbie.

jamesrbrown322's picture

I will say that Germaine did not have the greatest arm. But he had the best touch of ANY Buckeye I've seen in my lifetime.

"Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts." - Winston Churchill

+2 HS
BoFuquel's picture

Give me Tom Matte tough and you keep the rest. GO BUCKS!

I wish I didn't know now what I didn't know then.

+1 HS
MackHall400Series's picture

Accuracy: Joe Bauserman?


+19 HS
HighBallAce's picture

You guys just gotta admit that Bauserbomb has way more ring to it than say Smithbomb or Pryorbomb....or what about Herbstrietbomb? Umm close but still doesn't have the same ring to it as the one and only

Jeremypreemo81's picture

Man I miss the days when Troy Smith was our signal caller.

+2 HS
BuckToAsT's picture



+12 HS
BHT's picture

Definitely. He came up big in the games he played- it only makes me wonder why he was not the 2nd string (or 1st string in the three games before Braxton Miller started) instead of Bauserman. Guiton will be remembered for a long time.

+1 HS
James Mee's picture

There was a lot of talk from Urban that he was not the Kenny G we learned to love when Urban got there. I guess he was offered a one way ticket back to Texas before turning it around. 

+1 HS
BHT's picture

Yea, that was it, I remember those stories. It was a great turn around for Guiton. Now he lives in Buckeye lore rather than an unknown in Texas.

HighBallAce's picture

I kinda figured Galloway was going to getcha on that one.....LOL But come on Joey, we all know who is faster.....Denard...."snicker"


I'm not so sure on Joe Germaine's arm... He reminded me of Danny Wuerffel with his throwing (no offense to anyone who like Danny's throwing abilities).

Having witnessed Joe in person for a better of his 'breakout' season, what was more impressive about him was his accuracy.  I would argue that Troy and Braxton had stronger arms than Joe, as the ball tends to rocket out of their hands vs Joe, but then again, it could have simply been that he was more careful about accuracy and timing than either, too

"I don't apologize for anything.  When I make a mistake, I take the blame and go on from there." - Woody Hayes

+3 HS
BucksfanXC's picture

I feel like you picked three to avoid another Galloway-like tweet from either of the ones you should have left off.

“Any time you give a man something he doesn't earn, you cheapen him. Our kids earn what they get, and that includes respect.”  - Woody

+1 HS
fear_the_nut70's picture

Mack, it is all in the presentation.  How about:

Handing out Souvenirs to the Crowd





cplunk's picture

I would have liked to have seen Terrelle Pryor with a real QB coach.

+9 HS
SilverState's picture

Troy Smith = Leadership

Krenzel = Football IQ

Germaine = Accuracy

Pryor = Speed/Size

Braxton = Elusiveness

+4 HS
gumtape's picture

I don't have a problem with anything on this list. Smith to Robiskie is amazing.

As far as arm strength, Kent Graham and Tom Tupa both had absolute cannons for arms. Greg Frey did more with average teammates, and Mike Tomczak probably had the best NFL career.

Best Tackler: Steve Bellisari, which is good since he threw so many INTs.

High and tight boo boo

Crumb's picture

Bellisari hahaha poor guy was a free safety playing quarterback. And he was still better than Bauserbomb.

"The only good thing about it is winning the d*** thing" - Urban Meyer on The Game The War

+1 HS
cw823's picture

To here him say his name, I believe it was Thteve Bellithari

-3 HS
Hovenaut's picture

Before my time (not by much), but paying respect to past (from the wayback) greats:

Rex Kern - Smarts, leadership

Tippy Dye - The first Buckeye QB to go 3-0 versus M...igan.


+6 HS
BuckFly's picture

During the 1968 SMU game, Rex waved off the punt team on 4th & 10, called his own number and scrambled 15 yards for a 1st down. Imagine Woody's reaction had he not made it!


+9 HS
lamplighter's picture

any QB list that does not include Rex Kern's guts and football smarts is by definition incomplete

+9 HS
ibuck's picture

And Kern was a magician with the ball. Even the TV cameramen often got faked out.

Our honor defend, so we'll fight to the end !

If you can't win your conference, just quietly accept your non-playoff bowl game.

+1 HS
sivaDavis's picture

Still feel bad for that Cal defenders ankles.

"I've had smarter people around me all my life, but I haven't run into one yet that can outwork me. And if they can't outwork you, then smarts aren't going to do them much good." - Woody Hayes

+1 HS
741's picture

Toughness (e.g., the ability to take a hit, bounce back up off the ground and then make a play the next snap): Germaine.

+2 HS
The Vest-er's picture

No specific "moxie" category? PSU must have a patent on that trait 

Fundamentals are a crutch for the talentless.

+1 HS
CC's picture

Strictly speaking Braxton get's more off of designed runs vs. scrambles.  He is clearly a gifted runner but he hasn't been particularly good at scrambling.  I remember TP scrambling for 12 on 3rd and 11 on a called pass a lot.


Brutus1972's picture

Make Troy Smith 6'4" or 6'5" and call it a day and its not even close. Krenzel won so he's in no matter what. Germaine was my next favorite signal caller but he was too short to see the entire field also. That.... and he played during the Cooper years and had to split time with Stanley

Firedup's picture

Disappointed Shane Falco didnt make this list

"Making the Great State of Ohio Proud!" UFM

+3 HS
Hovenaut's picture

So is Special Agent Utah...


+1 HS
NitroBuck's picture

Schlichter's game winning score against the Skunkweasels sure brings back great memories.  Art was pretty slick, but Broadnax taking out two defenders was just sick.

Ferio.  Tego.

+2 HS
AndyVance's picture

I just finished reading Schlichter's 2009 autobiography, and it boggles the mind to wonder A) what he might have accomplished had coaches Hayes and Bruce utilized his talents a bit more than they did (we were still largely a three-yards-and-a-cloud-of-dust squad despite his arm cannon), and even more so B) what he might have accomplished in the professional ranks, not to mention in his final couple of seasons in Columbus, were it not for his disastrous gambling addiction.

+1 HS
Crumb's picture

Krenzel can say something that only Braxton and Rex can say too: UNDEFEATED.

"The only good thing about it is winning the d*** thing" - Urban Meyer on The Game The War

+4 HS
Nutinpa's picture

Agree.  And Braxton's inclusion in that list is tenuous.....although it can be argued credibly, that if he had Kern's or Krenzel's Defenses, he'd join them in having a NC too.

Still.....Kern's team beat Southern Call  in the Rose Bowl of 1969 and OJ Simpson.

Forty-four years later, Krenzel's team beat da of the greatest college football team's ever. 

Braxton Miller.....has yet to beat (and by extension while at Ohio State, Urban Meyer) a team at Ohio State that was even in the same dictionary as those USC or Miami teams. 

Kern and Krenzel, for whatever natural talent they lacked.....had a way of refusing to lose that is a trait few of the other QBs on this list possessed. Troy Smith had that "it" factor without a doubt...until that fateful night and the days leading up to it in the desert. That was when his legacy as compared to the likes of Vince Young or Tim Tebow went up in smoke.

Crumb's picture

Yeah Kern and Krenzel have the titles, But I think Braxton thrived in a situation that not many if any QBs can and have thrived in and that is not only a huge Coaching change but a change in football culture. Plus Bad @$$ Braxton still has another season to cement his legacy.

"The only good thing about it is winning the d*** thing" - Urban Meyer on The Game The War

+1 HS
lamplighter's picture

Tom Tupa's punting

+1 HS
ogama843's picture

Tom Tupa had a great NFL career. As a buckeye he could slam that ball off his foot for 70+ yards. Doesn't he have the record for longest punt?

Holy Buckeye!

+1 HS
Go1Bucks's picture

Brecksville, Ohio great. Tupa was a pretty damn good player.

Go Bucks!

ScarletNGrey01's picture

The one pass BMill made against Wisconsin to win that game and the look of disbelief on Russell Wilson's face and the rest of the Wisky players was priceless.  The loss couldn't have happened to a "nicer" coach as the extra bonus.

The will to win is not as important as the will to prepare to win. -- Woody Hayes

+2 HS
ogama843's picture

dropping back into the pocket and standing there; Jim Karsatos

Holy Buckeye!

ogama843's picture

Oh yea, almost forgot... Ability to orchestrate an AMAZING comeback; Greg Frey. That balding guy made one of my all time favorite games to watch. I can watch it over and over again.

Holy Buckeye!

+1 HS
buckskin's picture

Great list and comments.  Troy Smith's arm strength is a little underrated; his first TD pass to Ginn in the 2006 Fiesta Bowl was 70 yards in the air.  I still remember thinking on that play, who the hell is he throwing to!!  Ginn was 25 yards behind that corner.  Miss those guys.

+1 HS
avail31678's picture

I am NOT knocking Braxton here...but I disagree with him being a good "scrambler."  I actually think he gets sacked way more often than he should given our O-lines and his elusiveness.  As far as open field runner?  One of OSU's best ever, if not the best.  But scrambling to me implies avoiding a sack to keep a play alive to eventually throw or take off running.  If the category were named "Rushing" I would agree 100%.


Just my one and a half cents.

+2 HS
TossTrap's picture

If there was a "Toughness" category I would nominate Joe Germaine. After seeing Florida State tee of on him in the 1998 Sugar bowl, and how he kept getting up time after time, he won my respect. I can remember him saying later that his dad always taught him to "never let them see you sweat".

First and goal at the five and Arch is getting the ball.

+1 HS
livinthedream's picture

"At times Buckeye Nation has lost patience with Miller, but viewing his accomplishments through the lens of history proves the haters need to take a step back."  - Best line in the whole piece.

+1 HS
Zimmy07's picture

If Braxton plays all 15 games this year & doesn't sit the 2nd half in many of them he will likely be #1 or #2 in the OSU record books in BOTH a lot of career rushing and passing records.  (He won't pass Griffin for career rushing yards, I don't think).


Career rushing yards:

1- Griffin 5,589

2- George 3,768

3- Spencer 3,553

4- Chris Wells 3,382

5- Byers 3,200

6- Pearson 3,076

7- Miller 3,054   (add about 1200 to that if he plays 15 games healthy).

Career Passing yds

1- Schilchter 7,547

2- Hoying 7,232

3- Germaine 6,370

4- Frey 6,316

5- Pryor 6,177

6- Bellisari 5,878

7- Smith 5,720

8- Tomczak 5,569

9- Miller 5,292 (a good season would add another 2500 yds)

He could also be #1 in pass completions (#7 now), Passing TD's (#5 now), #3 in Rushing TD's (#5 now?), and various other categories.