Terry McLaurin shares a first name, a number and a position with one of Ohio State’s greatest wide receivers ever.
McLaurin wasn’t named after Terry Glenn. He never met the 1995 Biletnikoff Award winner. He didn’t ask for the No. 83 when he arrived at Ohio State; it just so happened that’s the number he received. But as Ohio State prepares to play Michigan in this year’s edition of The Game, McLaurin feels a responsibility nonetheless to honor the memory of Glenn, who was killed in a car accident on Monday.
"I hope I can play the best that I can to represent his number and his legacy as best I can," McLaurin said. "We’re going to be prepared to try to win for him."
While McLaurin never met Glenn, he said he has watched highlight videos of the late former Buckeye on YouTube and has tried to emulate the 1995 All-American’s play.
"Playing in that era that he played in was a little different than now, but just seeing the tenacity in which he played; when he got the ball, it was like it was life or death for him to score," McLaurin said. "And you want to be that way as a receiver where you catch the ball, and you can take a hitch for a touchdown. So seeing the way he carried that mentality into each and every game is exciting for a young guy like me trying to find my way."
McLaurin’s junior season hasn’t been nearly as spectacular as Glenn’s junior season, when Glenn caught 64 passes for 1,411 yards and 17 touchdowns before leaving Ohio State to be the seventh overall pick in the NFL draft, but McLaurin has nonetheless had the most productive season of his career – catching 26 passes for 342 yards and five touchdowns in 11 games – while establishing himself as one of the Buckeyes’ top leaders, as he was selected as one of this year’s nine captains.
As McLaurin said this week, "you don’t have to go too far" at Ohio State to be reminded of Glenn’s contributions to the Buckeyes; his photo still hangs on the walls surrounding the indoor practice field at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center. Ohio State plans to honor Glenn on Saturday by wearing a special helmet sticker. But McLaurin, who says he has received messages on social media this week encouraging him to have a big game in Glenn’s honor, said the best way for the Buckeyes to honor Glenn is by doing everything they can to beat Michigan.
"The best way we can honor him is just try to play our hardest," McLaurin said. "The best thing I can do is try to prepare and just try to do his number right."