After Kerry Coombs said Tuesday that Haskell Garrett's return to the field is “probably not as far away as any of us would have thought,” Ryan Day provided another positive update on the Ohio State defensive tackle's recovery during the Ryan Day Show on Thursday afternoon.
“He’s doing well, all things considered,” Day said of Garrett, who suffered facial injuries when he was shot on Aug. 30 while attempting to break up an argument between a man and a woman he did not know. “He’s very, very lucky. Very tough moment for all of us, very scary moment, but we’re happy to say that he’s doing well and he’s on the road to recovery.”
Day said he is hopeful that Garrett will be able to return to practice in the near future, though he will only be able to practice in a limited capacity at first.
“We’re hoping to get Haskell back here pretty soon so he can start practicing,” Day said. “It’s going to be a little while before he can actually go through contact, but we think we’re gonna get him back too, so that will be huge.”
Day did not provide a timetable for when he expects Garrett to be able to play in the games for the Buckeyes this fall.
In the meantime, Ohio State will need its other veteran defensive tackles to step up – at a position where the Buckeyes are already replacing DaVon Hamilton, Jashon Cornell and Robert Landers – and Day singled out Tommy Togiai and Antwuan Jackson as two who need to lead the way. He also named true freshman Ty Hamilton, DaVon's younger brother, as a young defensive tackle who's making an early push for playing time.
“Antwuan Jackson’s got to step up, Tommy’s got to step up, for sure. Those are guys that they’ve played a little bit now, they’ve been in the program for a couple years, they’re going to have to step up,” Day said. “And then we have some younger guys in there. Ty Hamilton is somebody that has already early on shown that he can do some really good things. So yeah, we got some bodies in there, but they’re gonna have to step up. We’re going to need some guys to heal up a little bit, too. We’ve got a couple guys, just a couple of nagging injuries here and there, but we’ll get them back soon, and once we get the pads on, we’ll have a better feel.”
As for Garrett, a GoFundMe being conducted in compliance with Ohio State and NCAA rules has now raised over $30,000 for his medical care. The campaign has a target goal of $100,000, and all funds that exceed the cost of Garrett's treatment will be donated to charity.