Carnell Tate is "officially" a Buckeye.
The 6-foot-2, 180-pound wide receiver has impressed the Buckeyes' coaching staff early in his Ohio State career, becoming the first of 12 early enrollees and 20 true freshmen in the class of 2023 to shed his black stripe as a member of the program.
Tate hails from Chicago but played his final years of high school football at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida. The No. 59 overall prospect and No. 9 wide receiver in 247Sports' composite rankings, Tate appeared in eight games as a senior at IMG and collected 750 receiving yards and eight touchdowns. His best performance of the year was a 103-yard, two-score effort in his team's 27-16 win over nationally-ranked St. Francis Academy.
In his first months at Ohio State, Tate has received increased opportunities to stand out to Ryan Day, Brian Hartline and the rest of the team's staff as Julian Fleming and Emeka Egbuka are out for the spring with undisclosed ailments.
From winter workouts to spring practices, Day said Tate and Ole Miss transfer Davison Igbinosun, who also lost his black stripe on Saturday, have been ready to roll in each session and has competed with every rep.
"Competitiveness," Day said of what he's seen in those players. "Both of those guys have competed. They've shown up in practice right from the first play."
Tate's opportunities will understandably diminish as Ohio State approaches next season as Fleming and Egbuka return to action and prepare to play alongside unanimous All-American Marvin Harrison Jr. and veteran wideout Xavier Johnson. However, Tate becoming the first player in his class to shed his black stripe should provide hope that his future with the Buckeyes will be bright.