Half of Ohio State's starting defensive line isn't in Miami.
Nose tackle Tommy Togiai and defensive end Tyreke Smith headline the list of unavailable Buckeyes for Monday's national championship game against Alabama, per the team's status report released approximately an hour and a half before kickoff.
|Ohio State Status Report for National Championship|
DT TOMMY TOGIAI
DE TYREKE SMITH
OL DAWAND JONES
K BLAKE HAUBEIL
DT TY HAMILTON
CB CAMERON BROWN
WR JAYLEN HARRIS
DL JACOLBE COWAN
LB MITCHELL MELTON
RB MIYAN WILLIAMS
S KOURT WILLIAMS
K DOMINIC DIMACCIO
LB CADE KACHERSKI
They will also be without kicker Blake Haubeil, who previously took to Instagram to reveal he tested positive for COVID-19 despite having "spent the past 4 months making sacrifices, and have not seen family and friends one single time." Running back Miyan Williams and offensive lineman Dawand Jones – a pair of second-stringers – will also be unavailable along with cornerback Cameron Brown, defensive lineman Jacolbe Cowan, defensive tackle Ty Hamilton, wide receiver Jaylen Harris, linebacker Mitchell Melton and safety Kourt Williams.
Ohio State will have left guard Harry Miller, running back Master Teague and defensive ends Zach Harrison and Tyler Friday at its disposal after they were deemed unavailable for the Sugar Bowl versus Clemson.
Without Togiai and Smith in tow, Ohio State will need everything it can get from Harrison and Friday, among others. Jerron Cage, a fourth-year interior defensive lineman from Cincinnati, could be in line to start in place of Togiai at 1-technique. Antwuan Jackson will likely see a bump in snaps as well. Larry Johnson, the famed defensive line coach, can be expected to roll out a defensive end rotation with Jonathon Cooper, Javontae Jean-Baptiste, Harrison and Friday playing the majority of snaps.
Teague's return to action comes at an important moment with Williams unable to go. He'll likely spell Trey Sermon, though it's unclear how many carries the one-time starting tailback will take.
Greg Studrawa, Ohio State's offensive line coach, has a choice to make at left guard where he could choose to go with Miller – who has started all but one game – or Matthew Jones, who impressed in his second start ever versus the Tigers. They both have starting experience. Since Jones isn't able to play, freshman Paris Johnson might be the first guy off the bench at both guard and tackle.