Skull Session: Ohio State Leads All-Time A.P. Averages, J.K. Dobbins Hype Train, and Gareon Conley to Visit the Browns

By D.J. Byrnes on March 30, 2017 at 4:59 am
J.K. Dobbins passes Antonio Williams for the March 30th 2017 Skull Session.

The local team returns to practice today. Afterward, we'll hear from Tony Alford, Kerry Coombs, and "select running backs and cornerbacks."

Follow 11W, Eric Seger, Tim Shoemaker, and Andrew Lind on Twitter for up-to-the-minute updates from the Woody Hayes Athletic Center.


Word of the Day: Opprobrium.

 WELL, ACCORDING TO SCIENCE. Subjective lists are trash... unless they can be used to reinforce my preconceived notions. My controversial hot take is Ohio State is the No. 1 team in everything.

The local team didn't make the tournament? Sounds like Duke, North Carolina, and Kansas dodged a bullet. The local offense didn't score a point against Clemson? Things would be different if they had those two missed field goals in their pocket.

Seven months ago, the Associated Press, using criterium based on their historical rankings, rated Ohio State as the No. 1 all-time football program. No arguments there.

Yesterday, the AP slotted Ohio State men's basketball as the 12th all-time program. Which, okay, sure, It's been a minute since Greg Oden and Mike Conley rode on enemies of the state.

If you combine the two rankings, however, it lays bare what we already know: The Buckeyes are the pound-for-pound rumble kings of these tax schemes.

From Jeff Cavanaugh:

1 OHIO STATE 12 1 6.5
2 UCLA 4 17 10.5
2 MICHIGAN 14 7 10.5
2 NOTRE DAME 18 3 10.5
5 OKLAHOMA 20 2 11
7 ALABAMA 30 4 17
8 FLORIDA 27 10 18.5
10 TEXAS 36 8 22
11 SYRACUSE 9 41 25
12 TENNESSEE 38 14 26
14 LSU 47 11 29
15 ARIZONA 8 54 31
16 ILLINOIS 11 51 31
17 LOUISVILLE 7 60 33.5
18 KENTUCKY 1 68 34.5
18 KANSAS 5 64 34.5
20 FLORIDA STATE 64 9 36.5
21 INDIANA 6 72 39
22 CINCINNATI 10 81 45.5
23 AUBURN 80 15 47.5
24 MIAMI 87 13 50
25 NEBRASAKA 101 12 53.5

The only thing Michigan has over Ohio State right now is a crumbling, 1900s-stacked all-time football record and a Sweet 16 L. Tough, tough times.

 CHOO, CHOO. It's ruthless at the bottom of Urban Meyer's depth charts. Sophomore Antonio Williams injures his hamstring, and Meyer not-so-subtly announces true freshman J.K. Dobbins passed him on the running back depth chart. 


The current trajectory Dobbins is on is similar to Curtis Samuel in 2014, as Samuel enrolled early and fairly quickly took reps from veterans like Rod Smith, Warren Ball, and Bri'onte Dunn. He even started once as a true freshman ahead of Ezekiel Elliott.

If Dobbins continues to follow that path, who knows where he finishes. What is known, however, is that this is only a positive for the Buckeyes and the running back position as a whole.

"I see him going to be pushed a little bit," Meyer said of Mike Weber. "The best thing that can happen is competition and we didn’t have much last year at that position."

Love Meyer's annual act where every freshman will play and some will even challenge established starters. (*Announcer voice* Did you know Meyer graduated from Cincinnati in psychology?)

That isn't stopping me from booking passage on the J.K. Dobbins hype train. He and Demario McCall will both be dangerously different looks than a sledgehammer like Mike Weber. 

Dobbins injured his ankle in September and needed surgery, wrecking his senior season. He's obviously back in form. As to his ceiling, here's what he told The Austin American-Statesman in October:

"Coach Meyer said I was better than Zeke when he was my age.”

For a refresher on Dobbins, here are his junior highlights:

 BROWNS SCOUT RARE BUCKEYE. The Almighty Cleveland Browns hold the No. 1 pick. It will probably be former Texas A&M defensive end Myles Garrett. They also hold the No. 12 pick. Marshon Lattimore will probably be gone, but Malik Hooker or Gareon Conley will probably be there for the taking.

The Browns are bringing Conley (and former North Carolina quarterback Mitch Trubisky) for a private workout on Friday.


The Browns will host Ohio State cornerback and Massillon High School graduate Gareon Conley on an official pre-draft visit Friday at their headquarters, an NFL source told the Beacon Journal on Tuesday.


Unlike Trubisky, Conley won't participate in the Browns' local prospect day by working out. Conley's meeting with the Browns will count as one of their 30 official pre-draft visits, a source said.

Conley strengthened his case to become a first-round pick April 27 with an outstanding workout at the NFL Scouting Combine.

My spider senses indicate this is the year Cleveland ends its Buckeye drought. However, these are the same sentiments that led me into cheering for a team with Ali Express-cutting room floor jerseys led by a fraudster who bought his way out of prison.

 BACK TO THE FUTURE. The whole offense will be under a microscope this season—especially Zach Smith's self-proclaimed Zone-6. I expect Ben Victor and K.J. Hill to lead the way, with contributions from Parris Campbell and Eric Glover-Williams. 

According to one report, new offensive architect Kevin Wilson is enamored of Terry McClaurin.


** Hoosier reunion … We’re told by a source very close to the team that Kevin Wilson is very high on a certain fourth-year junior wide receiver.

What that means remains to be seen, but I'd react with similar enthusiasm to finding successfully-larger notes of unmarked currency on my daily walks if McClaurin makes meaningful contributions throughout the season.

Love to find money.

 IMPRISON BBN. I loathe miserable sports fans. What's the point? You're only telling on your insignificant and meaningless life.


NCAA referee John Higgins met with law enforcement for more than two hours Tuesday after Kentucky fans sent death threats, repeatedly called his company's office and home -- despite an unlisted number -- and posted a barrage of false messages about his business on the company's Facebook page, sources told ESPN.

Higgins worked Sunday's Elite Eight game between Kentucky and North Carolina, which the Tar Heels won 75-73 on Luke Maye's buzzer-beating jumper. The Wildcats were whistled for 19 fouls, including two each on Malik Monk, De'Aaron Fox and Bam Adebayo in the first half, a fact that Kentucky coach John Calipari didn't let go unnoticed.

Hopefully, coaches think about the idiots on the fringe before popping off about refs.

Unless you're prepared to post bank statements proving off-shore payments from Chinese betting syndicates, shut up. Human error the price of admission we chose when we entered the bamboo torture chamber of sports.

 THOSE WMDs. Seneca on the shortness of life... The only Columbus mayor to get punched by a kangaroo... Crime victims like Timothy Caughman deserve respect from reporters... New AI tool makes great art and creepy cats... Bright "tower" on Mars: Anomaly or natural formation?

View 80 Comments