Skull Session: Nation's Best “Blue Chip Ratio,” Urban Meyer on Players Skipping Bowls, and Buckeye Fans Ranked Nation's Most Annoying

By Kevin Harrish on August 9, 2019 at 4:59 am
Justin Fields is greeting us in today's skull session.
Ohio State Athletics

This look familiar?

There were picks too, but he was also playing the future world champs, so what are you gonna do?


Word of the Day: Philomath.

 HAPPY BIRTHDAY, RYAN DAY! Hey look, Ohio State is absolutely loaded!

If you're not really sure what you're looking at, that's a chart of the top "blue chip ratios" in college football, essentially charting the most talented teams in college football, because talent matters.

The creator, Bud Elliott of SB Nation, explains his creation:

Quite simply, it’s the recruiting standard needed to win the college football national championship. Reviewing years of recruiting data, and giving weight to more recent years with standardized recruiting rankings, I’ve determined that in order to win the title, teams need to sign more four- and five-star recruits (“blue-chips”) than two- and three-stars over a four-year period.

The ratio is a representation of that. What percentage of your last four classes has been made up of blue-chips? The data overwhelmingly shows that champions eclipse the 50 percent standard.

So basically, if your roster isn't made up of at least 50 percent blue chips, try again next year because you're probably not competing for a natty this season.

The good news is, Ohio State has the highest percentage of blue chip prospects of any team in the nation (which makes complete sense since they signed their two highest-rated recruiting classes of all time in 2017 and 2018). Not only that, it's the highest ratio of at least the past five years, eclipsing Bama's 80 percent back in 2017.

The most hilarious part: this ratio doesn't even include transfer players, so this absurdly high number isn't even accounting for the highest-rated player in program history.

That's one hell of a parting gift from Urban Meyer to Ryan Day.

 WHAT WOULD URBAN THINK? Now that he's away from the sidelines and out from behind the podium, Urban Meyer's free to be a bit more candid than he's been in the past, and on Thursday, Colin Cowherd got his take on players – like Denzel Ward – skipping bowl games.

So he understands it, but doesn't necessarily like it, which seems damn near the safest position to take.

One small thing that out to me is that he says he'd never dealt with it until Denzel Ward wanted to sit out at the Cotton Bowl, and that makes me think about the whole Bradley Roby situation.

Regardless, I'm glad we've got Meyer in the media.

When Meyer reigned in Columbus, I think there were times when almost everyone wondered Jim Tressel's takes on some of the goings-on at Ohio State and in college football in general. Hell, for half my 11W life I wrote a fictional account of his least favorite moment of every Meyer-coached game.

But as long as Meyer's in his studio gig at Fox, we're probably not gonna have those same mysteries. And I appreciate that.

 MOST ANNOYING DAMN FANS IN THE LAND. Congrats, y'all! You've done it – most unbearable fans in the country. Wear it like a badge of honor.

"Hey, listen, if you're the most annoying fanbase, you have to be pretty good. I think that's why Tennessee finished fourth, because they've been largely irrelevant."

Well said, Darren. Tennessee's gotta be the craziest fanbase per cap, though.

Here's the thing about Ohio State's ranking: very fanbase (and collective group of people in general, really) has unbearable asshats. Ohio State just happens to have a very good football team, so the asshats are loud and numerous.

They even give some of us asshats a 5 a.m. platform to dish unsolicited online #takes to a multiple dozen daily readers, for some reason.

 DON'T CALL HIM INJURY PRONE. Injuries haven't been extremely kind to Nick Bosa in his football career.

The smallest bear tore his ACL in high school and suffered a core muscle injury his final year at Ohio State. He hasn't had the best luck since getting selected No. 2 in the NFL Draft, either, missing most of OTAs with a hamstring injury before an ankle sprain that will keep him out the rest of the preseason.

But 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan isn't gonna let folks label him as injury prone.

From Eric Branchs of he San Francisco Chronicle:

Shanahan noted Bosa played in 29 straight games at Ohio State before a core muscle injury he sustained last year limited him to three games.

“Not with me,” Shanahan said. “I go back to his history and the guy stayed on the field throughout college. He played 12 games his freshman year. (Fourteen) his sophomore year. He played in three his next year and had a surgery …

“Now we have a guy come in and someone landed on his leg (Wednesday). That doesn’t make me say someone is injury prone because he had a serious injury in college and he tore his ACL sometime in high school, like 60 percent of the players out there.”


“It’s hard for me to watch because everyone acts like he’s hurt and will do stuff like this,” Shanahan said. “I’ve been around probably one of the most physical rookies in practice that I’ve been around as far as playing the run. Playing the pass. He gets after it. He’s tough as could be.

“The last thing he wants to do is get hurt. He’s trying to go out there and play with it. He wants to come back tomorrow. But he had an over 300-pound man land on his leg and it was very fortunate that we didn’t lose him for the year.”

I hope my boss has my back like this when my enemies label me mistake prone, except there's no way in hell I've gone 29 straight days without a typo (or publishing an article with the wrong Michigan player featured in the header image, for that matter). 

It's probably unfair, but Nick has probably lost the benefit of the doubt with a lot of people because of his family history. His father's career was cut short with knee injuries and his brother has had trouble staying on the field in his three years in the league. That's not helping his case here.

 RIP ZACH SLAGLE. Some of you have undoubtably heard, but former Buckeye offensive lineman Zach Slagle is no longer with us.

His former teammate, Jake Ballard, put together a GoFundMe to help with the costs of his burial and memorial services. If you feel led, anything is appreciated.

The Ohio State Football Family lost a brother,  Zach Slagle passed away last night.  Zach Slagle was a rare person.  When describing him, most look at his great football career, which included making All-Ohio for Canton McKinley and playing for his beloved Ohio State Buckeyes.  

However, that just scratched the surface of who Zach was.  Zach was a worker.  His summer before enrolling at Ohio State, he worked tirelessly doing four jobs in an effort to save up for his tuition.  Once he arrived at OSU, he was a very valuable member of the team and his toughness was very evident.  His selflessness and grit helped the team go undefeated in the regular season, and he received his first of 3 pairs of gold pants for beating the University of Michigan.  

Zach was selfless as a teammate and friend and endeared himself to anyone who knew him. He was always the guy that everyone liked to see and be around. Zach was a fun loving person with a heart of gold.  In his honor, we would like to start a fund to help defray the costs of his burial services.  Thank you for your consideration and support to Zach’s family in this difficult time.

If you or someone you know needs help, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week at 1-800-273-8255. The Crisis Text Line is also available 24/7 by texting TALK to 741741.

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