Brian Hartline and Marvin Harrison Jr. Discuss Their Favorite Buckeye Memories and More in the Latest “Tradition Talk”

By Jacob Rhee on June 10, 2023 at 11:30 am
Brian Hartline and Marvin Harrison Jr.

The most recent installment in Ohio State’s “Tradition Talk” series features a pair of legendary wideouts.

Brian Hartline never posted the gaudy collegiate numbers that Marvin Harrison Jr. did a year ago, but both guys have left an unforgettable mark on the program. Needless to say, there was plenty for the two to talk about when they sat down for a conversation centered around their respective careers in Columbus.

Harrison was first tasked with creating a Mount Rushmore of Buckeye wide receivers, and it quickly became evident that he knows his Ohio State history. He named Cris Carter, Michael Jenkins, and Terry Glenn - all of whom began their college career before Harrison was born - and finished his list with former teammate Chris Olave. Hartline doesn’t give his own four-player group, but does mention Paul Warfield, David Boston, and Garrett Wilson as guys that belong in the mix, as well.

Hartline said he “never planned on being a coach,” and asked Harrison what it would be like if he also ended up on a staff one day. Harrison immediately responded that Hartline has taught him the importance of a coach “having a relationship” with their players “on and off the field.” The Buckeyes’ offensive coordinator stated “people really don’t care how much you know, until they know how much you care.”

Next, they discussed their favorite moments wearing the Scarlet and Gray. For Harrison, it’s the 2022 Rose Bowl against Utah, which was his “coming-out party.” Since Ohio State hasn’t claimed a win in The Game or another bowl since he arrived, Harrison noted the instant classic in Pasadena is “unfortunately” the biggest contest he’s won.

Hartline’s two best memories both came in victories against Michigan. The first was playing in an electric environment in The Shoe during the “Game of the Century” in 2006. The other was in 2008, when Hartline had two scores against the Wolverines and caught his buddy Todd Boeckman’s final collegiate touchdown pass. He added that as a coach, he loved being in the green room at the NFL Draft when Wilson and Olave were selected. Hartline told Harrison that “your guys’ success is really what motivates me.”

For Harrison, the biggest goal of his junior campaign is to play in the Big Ten championship game. His father, of course, is a Colts legend, so playing in Indianapolis “has to happen.”

Harrison has reeled in countless spectacular catches over the past two years, but Hartline believes that this one against Iowa was his best work.

It was fourth down, Harrison was the only option on the play, and Hartline appreciated that the first-team All-American got both feet in rather than just one. Hartline says that “people don’t realize the intricacy” required to make the catch.

Harrison’s personal favorite grab was this one-handed beauty in College Park because it had the “highest degree of difficulty.” He was on an island with 2023 first-round pick Deonte Banks, who was flagged for pass interference.

They wrapped up the conversation talking about what it means to be a Buckeye. Hartline said “the university means more to me than ever,” and that Ohio State has been “such a life-changing experience.”

Harrison referenced all of the great people he’s met on campus and how special it is to spend time with them. That could mean catching passes, or “going to dinner” and “riding scooters on High Street.” For the junior from Philadelphia, it’s the smaller things that make him truly appreciate the school.

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