Skull Session: Don't Panic About Defensive Line Recruiting, D.J. Carton is Ready for the New Three-Point Line, and Buckeyes Dominating NFL OTAs

By Kevin Harrish on June 6, 2019 at 4:59 am
J.K. Dobbins is pointing towards the end zone in today's skull session.

I bet y'all have never heard of the Hawaiian Chick-Fil-A.

Georgia does have its perks, and it ain't just good high school football #teens.


Word of the Day: Bumptious.

 DON'T PANIC! I get paid to exist online – I read your comments. I know some of y'all are properly flipping the hell out that Ohio State hasn't been hauling in commitments from the nation's top defensive prospects the same way Ryan Day's been pulling elite offensive weapons.

I mean hell, the Buckeyes landed a commitment from the nation's top kicker before landing a top-200 player on the defensive side of the ball in the 2020 class.

But maybe wait just a bit to break the glass and push that panic button.

From Dave Biddle of Bucknuts:

“Well I think any time you coach at Ohio State University and you’re recruiting great kids you have a chance of getting them, and I think our coaches have done a great job," (Greg) Mattison said. "The thing I’m finding is everybody works together to get the players. It’s not about I’m recruiting this guy and you’re recruiting that guy. It’s a team effort because when they get here they’re all Ohio State defensive players. I think right now we’re doing well. Our players, if you’re a recruit and you come around and watch our defensive players you have to be excited. I know I am. They’re young kids with great character. They love the game, and if I’m a recruit and I’m seeing that I’m liking it.”


Bucknuts circled back and asked the veteran coach point blank if he's concerned that Ohio State only has one defensive commit up to this point.

"No, no, no. Not at all," Mattison said. "Again, I’ve gotta go by if I’m a recruit and what I see. So, don’t worry about it. It’s gonna be fine.”

Look, at the end of the day, the Buckeyes still have proven recruiters Larry Johnson, Al Washington and Greg Mattison on staff and I'd sign my unborn son to play for Jeff Hafley tomorrow if I could.

If December rolls around and the Buckeyes are still batting 0fer on top defensive prospects, I'll pitch my forks right along with you. But I'm not letting my Internet Hulk out of its cage just yet.

And I mean, if everything really does go to shit on the other side of the ball, Ohio State did prove it could win 13 games without a defense last year...

 FROM (EVEN FURTHER) DOWNTOWN. The extension of the NCAA men's three-point line seems to have caught exactly nobody in Buckeyeland by surprise.

Chris Holtmann said a month ago that he fully expected the line to be moved back to the international distance this season and that the team had already be practicing at the new distance, and it looks like Ohio State's point guard of the future was preparing as well.

From Stephen Means of

“One thing I worked on a lot this offseason is working on range and working on shooting deeper,” (D.J.) Carton told “I don’t think that rule will affect me too much, because I’ve been working out all summer from NBA range. Working at NBA range will help me against guys in college.”


In four years at Bettendorf (Iowa) High School, he scored 1,198 points, pulled down 372 rebounds and dished out 257 assists while earning a multitude of player of the year awards. He provides the something the Buckeyes were lacking last season from their guards: An ability to create shots for himself and others.

The extra space the new 3-point line will provide should make his job that much easier.

“The big thing was creating shots for others," Carton said. “The guards like C.J. Jackson, he wasn’t really a point guard, he was more of a wing player. He did a good job of changing his role and doing what he had to do for this team. I can create shots for others just by beating guys off the dribble with my athleticism, strength and speed.”

I think in the long run, the extra space is going to be a bigger deal than the added foot-and-a-half to the three-point shot, and it seems like Carton is more excited than anything for that, which is certainly welcome.

There are a lot of folks justifiably nervous about the Buckeyes trotting out a first year starter at point guard, but honestly, at least they'll actually be playing in the correct position this year, even if they're green.

Ohio State really hasn't had a proper point guard since D'Angelo Russell.

 THEY GOT NEXT. It's pretty sweet that the Buckeyes don't really even have to wait that long before turning into superstars at the NFL level.

I mean, Denzel Ward's been in the League for about a single calendar year and is already locking down arguably the best receiver in the NFL in a one-on-one.

And then there's that already-notorious Dwayne Haskins-Terry McLaurin connection that seems to be already breaking physics:

And that doesn't even include Ohio State's highest NFL draft choice since Orlando Pace, who has to spend the next few weeks getting massages and playing video games after suffering a hamstring strain.

The thought of an all-Buckeye NFL roster gets more and more hilariously overpowered every day.

 ZACH HARRISON, QUALITY HUMAN. Zach Harrison earned a distinction from the National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame on Wednesday as the new Buckeye was named to the first-ever NFF Team of Distinction.

The criteria for the award includes academic achievement, athletic accolades and community involvement, meaning NFF sees him as a good and well-rounded human being, not just an elite football player.

From an NFF release:

Zach Harrison – DE/TE, Olentangy Orange High School in Lewis Center, Ohio. Submitted by the NFF Columbus (OH) Chapter.

  • 3.57 GPA
  • Team captain and U.S. Army All-American
  • First team all-conference and all-district selection

Shoutout to Zach, who was probably already more accomplished before leaving high school than I will ever be in my life.

 MY GOD, DAWAND JONES. I will never tire of watching Ohio State offensive line signee Dawand Jones dominate #teens on a basketball court, and he did it one last time on Wednesday night in an Indiana high school all-star game.

It honestly looks like he's playing with a nerf ball against little kids at times, but it's still amazing how well he moves at his size and how good his footwork is.

Also, it's fitting as hell that his high school team was the Giants.

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