Ohio State’s roster will include both plenty of familiar faces and a bunch of new ones when the Buckeyes take the field for their first spring practice of 2023 on Tuesday.
Ohio State confirmed in a news release Monday that it will have 20 new players on the roster this spring. Those newcomers include Ohio State’s 11 early-enrollee freshmen, five scholarship transfers and four walk-ons – three of whom are also transfers.
Just over half of the Buckeyes’ recruiting class of 2023 will participate in spring practices. Among the 20 scholarship freshmen who signed with the Buckeyes in the 2023 class, the 11 who are on campus for spring practices are wide receivers Carnell Tate, Noah Rogers and Bryson Rodgers; tight end Jelani Thurman; offensive linemen Luke Montgomery, Joshua Padilla, Austin Siereveld and Miles Walker; defensive tackle Will Smith Jr.; cornerback Jermaine Mathews Jr.; and safety Malik Hartford. Walk-on running back Will Hartson will also participate in spring practices as an early enrollee.
Ohio State’s transfer additions this spring are headlined by former Syracuse safety Ja’Had Carter, former Ole Miss cornerback Davison Igbinosun, former Louisiana-Monroe offensive lineman Victor Cutler, former Oregon State quarterback Tristan Gebbia and former Arizona State long snapper John Ferlmann, who are all scholarship players. Walk-on transfer additions are defensive lineman Landon Smith, who started his college career at Ashland; kicker Casey Magyar, who previously played at Kent State; and long snapper Collin Johnson, who previously played at Lehigh.
Ohio State has not yet released jersey numbers for any of its new players, though we should learn what those will be on Tuesday morning when the Buckeyes take the practice field for the first time this year.
On the other end of the spectrum, Ohio State returns 47 players who have received at least one letter from the program for contributing in at least five games during a season. Those players, broken down by their position groups:
- WR (8): Julian Fleming, Xavier Johnson, Marvin Harrison Jr., Emeka Egbuka, Jayden Ballard, Reis Stocksdale, Kojo Antwi, Kaleb Brown
- DL (7): Ty Hamilton, Jaden McKenzie, JT Tuimoloau, Jack Sawyer, Michael Hall, Tyleik Williams, Caden Curry
- OL (6): Matt Jones, Enokk Vimahi, Donovan Jackson, Josh Fryar, Jakob James, Zen Michalski
- S (6): Josh Proctor, Lathan Ransom, Cam Martinez, Kourt Williams, Kye Stokes, Sonny Styles
- LB (5): Tommy Eichenberg, Steele Chambers, Cody Simon, Reid Carrico, C.J. Hicks
- TE (5): Cade Stover, Gee Scott Jr., Joe Royer, Patrick Gurd, Sam Hart
- RB (4): Miyan Williams, TreVeyon Henderson, Chip Trayanum, Dallan Hayden
- CB (3): Denzel Burke, Jordan Hancock, Jyaire Brown
- ST (2): Jesse Mirco, Jayden Fielding
- QB (1): Kyle McCord
(Note: Devin Brown was included on the list of letterwinners in Ohio State’s news release Monday but was not listed as a letterwinner on the roster distributed to the media Tuesday. After playing in only two games as a true freshman, Brown would not appear to qualify as a letterwinner for 2022.)
That list of letterwinners includes 13 returning starters from last season. TreVeyon Henderson and Miyan Williams share the returning starter designation at running back while Julian Fleming, Marvin Harrison Jr., Emeka Egbuka, Cade Stover, Donovan Jackson and Matt Jones also return as offensive starters from 2022. Ty Hamilton and Mike Hall share a returning starter designation at defensive tackle while JT Tuimoloau, Tommy Eichenberg, Steele Chambers, Denzel Burke and Lathan Ransom were all mainstays in the defensive lineup a year ago.
Nine Ohio State players will be unavailable this spring due to injuries. Henderson, Egbuka, Fleming and Eichenberg will leave the Buckeyes without four returning starters for spring practices while running back Evan Pryor, center Jakob James, linebacker/defensive end Mitchell Melton, safety Kourt Williams and walk-on running back TC Caffey will also be sidelined.
Ohio State’s staff this spring will include 15 support staffers in addition to Ryan Day and his 10 full-time assistant coaches.
Jim Knowles, Larry Johnson, Tim Walton and Perry Eliano will be joined on the defensive side of the ball by quality control coaches Joe Lyberger, Brent Zdebski and Sam McGrath, graduate assistants James Laurinaitis and LaAllan Clark and program assistants Gerren DuHart, Joshua Chorba and Mike Dawson.
Brian Hartline, Tony Alford, Justin Frye, Corey Dennis and Keenan Bailey will receive assistance on the offensive side of the ball from senior advisor and analyst Todd Fitch, graduate assistants Mike Sollenne and Sean Binckes and program assistants Devin Jordan and Riley Larkin. Quality control coach Rob Keys and program assistant Gunner Daniel will assist Parker Fleming on special teams.
Eight of the support staffers are new additions to the staff for 2023: Laurinaitis, Clark, DuHart, Chorba, Dawson, Binckes, Larkin and Daniel. Dawson, whose hiring had not previously been announced by the program, was a defensive line and linebackers coach at Nebraska for four of the past five years and previously worked with Day as an assistant for the Philadelphia Eagles, Boston College and New Hampshire.
Ohio State will hold 15 practices this spring, beginning this Tuesday and Thursday before Ohio State starts its spring break. Upon returning from spring break, the Buckeyes will practice three times a week for each of the next four weeks leading up to the spring game at noon on April 15, which will serve as Ohio State’s 15th and final practice of the spring.