Ohio State Has No Key Players Unavailable, No Game-Time Decisions For Fiesta Bowl Versus Clemson

By Colin Hass-Hill on December 27, 2019 at 12:05 pm
Ryan Day

Ohio State isn't expected to be without any of its key players in the Fiesta Bowl.

No Buckeyes player is listed as a game-time decision, and the only players deemed unavailable for Saturday's game were also not able to play in the Big Ten Championship Game, per the status report released on Friday.

Ohio State Status Report for Clemson
WR C.J. Saunders
OG Gavin Cupp
RB Marcus Crowley
WR Ellijah Gardiner
S Ronnie Hickman
DT Taron Vincent
WR Kamryn Babb
DT Noah Donald (walk-on)

Everybody Ohio State has expected to play this weekend will play, including quarterback Justin Fields, who said on Tuesday that his left knee is 80-85 percent healthy as he continues to rehab a sprained MCL that he suffered in the win against Penn State and re-aggravated the following week versus Michigan.

"I think at this time of the year, coming off those three games at the end of the year, it was great to have a little bit of a break to catch our breath," Ryan Day said on Friday. "But it is great to have everybody healthy. That means a lot late in the season. It's been a unique year that way where we were able to get the guys some rest early in the season, but then we had that tough run down the stretch, and that's really where it became March Madness."

Wide receiver C.J. Saunders is listed as unavailable for Saturday's game with a knee injury, and he's uncertain about his future. He applied for a sixth year of eligibility, but he told Eleven Warriors on Thursday that the NCAA will not respond to his appeal until after the season ends. Offensive guard Gavin Cupp, running back Marcus Crowley and wide receiver Ellijah Gardiner will be out, too.

Wide receiver Kamryn Babb, safety Ronnie Hickman and defensive tackle Taron Vincent are continuing their season-long recoveries from injury. Babb and Hickman have been working back from torn ACLs, and Vincent suffered a torn labrum in his right shoulder before the season.

The status report does not disclose reasonings or expected timetables for players' absences.

The health of Ohio State's defensive backfield is especially important when facing Clemson's Trevor Lawrence, Tee Higgins and Justyn Ross. Shaun Wade, Damon Arnette and Josh Proctor each missed games in the second half of the season, but all will be at Jeff Hafley's disposal on Saturday.

Here's Ohio State's depth chart for the Fiesta Bowl:

Depth Chart
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