O-line, safety, and LB as the biggest concerns is exactly right. However, if those position groups excel, Ohio State will have a huge season.
Tagging along here, because that's exactly right.
Big questions, but I'm optimistic.
I had to run away high, so I wouldn't come home low...
Perhaps strangely, I have almost zero concern about OL. Yes, there will be 4 new starters, but I frankly didn't think much of the 4 guys lost. Jordan may be an exception but he was out of position last season. My confidence is actually quite high for this season and they have a chance to be much better in Nov than Sep.
The quarterback rating for projected starters is way to high in my eyes. Fields is talented, but completely unproven. If the ratings for projected starters were purely based on talent for each position as quarterback is, each group would be a 9 or 10.
I’m not sure how he gets higher than a 6 or 7 when we really don’t know what to expect from him.
Love the whole article series though. An interesting idea that lends new content in the off-season, can’t complaint about that.
I agree that 9 is too high, and probably a 7 or 8 would be more justified, but I will add that we aren't just talking about a talented player, we are talking a guy who would have been their highest rated recruit ever. Yes, he has to prove it on the field, but I think it's fair to give him a little benefit of the doubt based on his make-up, and the fact he has been through a full college season already(albeit not here)
Thanks for your thoughts and analysis Colin. This is obviously a difficult thing to predict. The first few categories are very strong.
The back half of the categories could go either way, depending on the performance this year. For example, if you told me before last season our defense full of talented players would have performed so poorly, I wouldn't have believed you. Unfortunately, that's how it played out.
Let's hope the O-line, running backs, and defensive back 7 exceed expectations this year! They potentially could be great.
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if you told me before last season our defense full of talented players would have performed so poorly, I wouldn't have believed you. Unfortunately, that's how it played out.
Talented players = recruiting rankings. Potential. For most folks, I think. But in D1 football they'll be playing against much faster, bigger, smarter (Football IQ) players. They can't just rely on their own athletic ability to achieve success. We have to wait to see how they'll do, and whether they will accept coaching, play smart and as a team.
Lastly, isn't it strange to judge this group of players by the recruits that will join them in 2020?
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We had some pretty awesome returning players last year as well that seemed to take a step back instead of forward. It was difficult to watch at times.
In most cases, we really won't know the impact of recruits until a few years down the line.
Since only one position group gets a 75%, I'm saying the rankings are a bit too high. Rank them how they did last year and the unknown players only get a ranking based on their HS performance and rankings (5 star recruit gets a 7/10, 4 star 6/10, etc). Then compare against this article at the end of the year.
'97 - Molecular Genetics
I agree with you here that the rankings are high. Especially the LB's. I don't want to be a negative Nancy but wouldn't give them anything above 5/10 for the first 2 categories. Last year was statistically the worst defense in OSU history and our LB's were the core of the problem.
I believe we have the talent. It comes down to the coach's putting the best players in the best spots to succeed. Personally I like the idea of Terajada Mitchell in the Middle, Harrison and Werner on the sides!
When I see all those names at corner I can't help but remember how stoked I was when all those kids committed. They all have a ton of potential, I say get them in the game early and often, rotate them in, get their feet wet in the OOC so we might find that next great DB or DBs for conference play.
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If we land Robinson and Knighton at RB in this class I would say the RB Recruiting goes to a 10/10.
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I’m thinking the WRs starters will be Hill, Mack and Victor.
Why do you think both Bowen and Alibi will be back ups? One or both of them will win a job!
Only position open is RT and the rookie played very well there and is a top recruit. They certainly could pass him this fall but right now he's looking good. Injury at the LT position if he doesn't heal up could open up Alibi to start.
Isn't left guard open as well? I know we're expecting the transfer from Rutgers to win the job but he just got on campus. I don't believe he's had time to win it yet..
Technically yes it is open but the prevailing opinion seemed to be that as an All League RG he would fill that slot.
I wonder if Bowen would have played well enough to make the honorable mention list if he was healthy enough to play last year. let the competition begin...
This is good analysis. I just wish D-line and O-line were #s 1 and 2, with LBs @ #3, but you can't have everything, I guess. Lots of good depth everywhere but QB = potential bummer.
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If the best guys play isn't just a mantra but a reality, the competition should improve all groups, especially at LB. If the team can get a first year JT Barrett type season or better from Fields then the BUCKS can be in the mix at the end of the season. Time for the 'young turks' to step up and take over.
“Being average means you are as close to the bottom as you are to the top.” John Wooden
That's an interesting way to try to evaluate where we're sitting at each position group heading in to fall camp. Thanks, Colin.
To me, the best way to look at a system like this is to compare our standings to our upcoming opponents' standings, using the same methodology. I find it hard to believe there is a team on our twelve game schedule that matches or exceeds our average of 32 out of a possible 40 points using this methodology.
I almost hate to admit to being this much of a college football junkie, but occasionally I'll take a peek at some sources of info on our upcoming opponents. From what I've gathered so far, it appears other programs have some potentially weak spots on their rosters - without the obvious solutions we have at the ready in most cases.
Contrary to pretty much any team on our schedule, even in our areas of greatest concern we have four and sometimes five-star talent waiting in the wings. The obvious payoff from having out-recruited every program in the B1G over the past four to five cycles.
And yes - even in what was considered to be a bit of an off-year by our standards - in last year's class our average player rating was higher than any other program in the conference (UM and PSU out-ranked us last cycle only in quantity - not quality). Of course, we're clearly ahead of the competition in every other cycle over the past five years (according yo 247sports) -
Good judgement comes from experience. Experience comes from bad judgement. - Will Rogers
Love this comment, Buckeye Phi. We have more talent in the wings than most have starting. The majority of the big would love to have our inexperienced db's. I think most position groups in college are inexperienced. Ours may be more experienced than most as they've at least practiced against legit nfl receivers for a year or two. I'd take that experience any day...
Starting Borland and Werner is just bad news period. I understand experience will trump just about everything early but we don't play top notch teams early either and I hope that others get enough playing time to show that they may be the long term answer for our defense.
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I hear what you're saying, Buckzilla - but I'd like to see how Borland and Werner perform in our new system before coming to the conclusion that they just can't play.
Werner in particular, is a very athletic player at his position. I'll be interested in seeing how he'll do in a system where he should have more certainty of his role in a given situation -
Considering LJ's age, I'm more optimistic about the future of the WR group than the DL. I know its only been one year but Hartline has been perfect.
Receivers lack top end speed. Kj Mack and Victor are good but do not have the ability to make top level secondaries scared
Mr NW Montana Buckeye,
i have never seen anymore inept LB play until Pete(glove man), Werner, he’s constantly messing with his gloves like he is next up to bat, came on the scene. Urban andDavis were both ensnared with this kid and he is horrible, constantly out of position and piss poor pursuit angles. Browning should be moved outside to Werner’s spot. Tuf will battle to the end for the middle. He was not close to 100% last year. He is the smartest LB on the team. Blame last year’s LB play onto Davis’s inept coaching and Schiano’s too technical scheme.
Jack L Frysinger
He is the smartest LB on the team.
And how exactly do you conclude that he’s smarter than Harrison?
Bigfry- it seems that Coach Mattison is also very high on Werner, so apparently he isn't inept or horrible. He made some big plays last year (Michigan game) and actually spent more time in coverage than in the box and shouldn't be associated with majority of the long runs given up. Werner has and continues to earn the right to start and play in a new system that is designed to showcase his athleticism. Agree that Borland isn't going to roll over and has also worked his tail off to be in a position to start. What has Browning shown you? I get that he is a five star from Texas, but he's had two years to get on the field.
Our LBs were awful last year. Worst I’ve seen and Borland the slowest LB since the Earl Bruce days.
If he is the starter at MLB we should just run dime as our base. He’s not only slow, but small.
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