Parris Campbell Continues to Work in the Slot, More Tony Alford Banter, Focus on the Deep Ball and More From Ohio State's Offense

By Eric Seger on March 21, 2017 at 10:30 am
Observations from Ohio State's offense Tuesday during practice.
2017 Spring Preview

“Get your depth, Johnnie. Make sure you get your depth!”

Urban Meyer shouted that at redshirt junior wide receiver Johnnie Dixon on Tuesday morning at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center. Dixon beat Shaun Wade on a comeback route and reeled in a pass from J.T. Barrett, but would not have gotten many yards if it were live tackle.

That play came from the "mini-field" portion of practice, the most interesting part of the roughly one hour the program allowed the media to watch.

Below are more observations from the Ohio State offense from the team's third practice — and first back from spring break — this spring.


  • The team practiced in full pads for the first time this spring on Tuesday.
  • Tight end Marcus Baugh returned to the field and ran laps around it during practice. He was not seen on March 7 and a team spokesman said it was due to an offseason shoulder procedure. Baugh had a brace on his shoulder while he ran.
  • At the beginning of practice, a video streamed across the board during stretches that highlighted the top speed, strength and effort numbers from players. Denzel Ward led the speed category, clocked at 21.1 miles per hour. Behind him was Elijah Goins, Kendall Sheffield, Marcus Williamson, Jeffrey Okudah, K.J. Hill, Joshua Norwood, Binjimen Victor, Rodjay Burns and Malik Harrison. Their speeds were not specified on that graphic.
  • Next came Explosives, where Jahsen Wint led the way with a score of 74. Following him were Goins, Sheffield, Johnnie Dixon, Justin Hilliard, Erick Smith, Wayne Davis, Dante Booker, Shaun Wade and Keandre Jones to round out the top 10.
  • On the linebacker and tight ends graphic for effort, Luke Farrell was listed first. Hilliard, Jake Hausmann, Harrison and Jones were the rest in the top 5.
  • Defensive linemen effort in order: Rashod Berry, Davon Hamilton, Sam Hubbard, Nick Bosa and Jalyn Holmes.
  • Offensive linemen effort in order: Billy Price, Malcolm Pridgeon, Brady Taylor, Demetrius Knox and Branden Bowen.
  • Malik Harrison led the linebacker and tight ends in speed, clocking at 18.8 miles per hour. Hilliard went 17.3, Booker 16.5, Jones 16.4 and Farrell 16.2.
  • Offensive linemen explosives in order: Jack Wohlabaugh, Kevin Feder, Gavin Cupp and Bowen.
  • Defensive linemen explosives in order: Dre'Mont Jones, Berry, Hamilton, Bosa, Hubbard.
  • Linebacker/tight end explosives in order: Hilliard, Booker, Jones, Harrison, Farrell
  • Berry led the team in the effort category, tallying 899 yards. A team spokesman did not know what the 899 yards meant in regards to that grading scale. Behind him: Wint, Goins, Mike Weber, J.K. Dobbins, Farrell, Demario McCall, Dixon and Antonio Williams.
  • Speed and tempo continued to be a theme at practice. The coaches stressed the players to move quickly in and out of drills in an effort to get as many reps as possible.
  • The players taking punt returner reps, in order: Hill, McCall, Kendall Sheffield, Wade and Eric Glover-Williams.
  • Unlike the last time reporters viewed practice, McCall worked exclusively at running back on Tuesday. He did both running back and wide receiver drills on March 7.
  • Weber, Williams, Dobbins and McCall were the order of running backs going through drills.
  • Williams had another rough morning at the discretion of running backs coach Tony Alford. After going through a drill and dodging Alford — who was swinging a padded bat at the backs as they ran by — Williams said something about how he should be able to choose the direction he went over the bags. Alford's response: “You bitch more than my son, you need to shut your ass up.”
  • Dobbins tripped over a bag during the backfield action portion of practice. He smashed his fist into the turf in frustration. Dobbins also put the ball on the ground a few times.
  • On the offensive line, Malcolm Pridgeon worked with the interior group led by Greg Studrawa while Kevin Wilson drilled the tackles and tight ends.
  • First team offensive line from left to right: Jamarco Jones, Michael Jordan, Billy Price, Demetrius Knox and Isaiah Prince.
  • Second team offensive line from left to right: Josh Alabi, Matt Burrell, Brady Taylor, Malcolm Pridgeon, Branden Bowen
  • A.J. Alexander led the tight ends through drills, followed closely by Luke Farrell, Kierre Hawkins and then Jake Hausmann.
  • That group spent an entire 5-minute period of practice with the quarterbacks, Wilson and Ryan Day. They worked on corner patterns, with Day demanding the quarterbacks get the ball down the field and into the corner of the end zone quickly. Thus, emphasizing not underthrowing it.
  • As mentioned above, Dixon was full-go once again and looked crisp. He ran deep patterns in drills as well as backfield action, not showing any signs of restrictions from his knees.
  • The quarterbacks and receivers did various deep passing drills more than once during the first hour of practice on Tuesday. First they did it against no defense, then the wide receivers faced off against a cornerback.
  • In mini-field, Weber let a pass from Joe Burrow go right through his face and hit him in the facemask. On that play, Zach Smith wanted Burrow to throw it deep to Binjimen Victor, who had beaten Shaun Wade.
  • Victor continued to look the part at receiver, a fluid athlete with soft hands and solid route-running techniques.
  • Parris Campbell worked almost exclusively at H-back as the first group's slot receiver. McCall did not take any reps from the slot in mini-field portion of practice.
  • Eric Glover-Williams made a few nice catches in 1-on-1 drills and during mini-field. He also worked in the slot.
  • 2016 Rimington Trophy winner Pat Elflein, Marshon Lattimore and Raekwon McMillan attended practice. Ohio State's Pro Day is scheduled for Thursday.
View 100 Comments