Skull Session: Paris Johnson Jr. Didn't Give Up a Sack, Brian Hartline Explains NIL Problems, and Michael Thomas and Chris Olave Are a Dynamic Duo

By Kevin Harrish on May 9, 2022 at 4:59 am
Brian Hartline uses the force in today's skull session.

Fun fact to start your week: Ohio State currently has just as many scholarship kickers as it does quarterbacks.

Word of the Day: Torsion.

 YOU SHALL NOT PASS. When I compiled the various way-too-early mock drafts last week, I saw a lot of people wondering why Paris Johnson Jr. was unanimously projected to be a first-round pick.

Well, the fact that he was damn near perfect in pass pro while playing out of position last season probably has something to do with it.

Now, to be perfectly fair, the last time an Ohio State player was projected as a first-round pick a few months before transitioning to his "most natural position" it did not work out all that well. So I'd understand if you're skeptical!

But as someone who would have projected Paris as an eventual top-15 pick when he was like a junior in high school, I'm fine buying the hype.

 TWO FOR THE PRICE OF ONE. With Michael Thomas awaiting his arrival in New Orleans, Chris Olave is going from one dynamic duo to another.

And with Thomas missing all of last season with an injury, getting him back with Olave coming to town is like getting a Buckeye two-for-one special.

Michael Thomas -- another Ohio State product from years past -- is on track to return from injury, and if he's able to participate for the majority of the 2022 season, the Saints will see it as if they've added two premier talents.

"That would be our hope. We feel good about what Mike's done in the rehab process," Saints coach Dennis Allen said when asked during an appearance on the Rich Eisen Show if he expected Thomas to establish a quick rapport with quarterback Jameis Winston. "There are still a few hurdles that we've got to climb with any of our guys that had any injuries that they're trying to get back from.

"I kind of look at it in terms of ... We drafted Chris Olave in the first round, but I almost look at it is getting Mike back, it's almost like we had got two first-round draft choices at wide receiver. So I feel really good about that."

I'm not sure there are two receivers that could possibly complement each other better than Michael Thomas and Chris Olave, with Mike getting everything underneath and Olave going bombs-away over the top.

Now the Saints need to just somehow acquire the No. 1 overall pick, draft C.J. Stroud, and they'll be set for the foreseeable future.

Unfortunately for them, half the teams in the NFL would probably like to have that same plan.

 PERFECTLY SAID. There are thousands, if not millions of people trying to figure out how NIL went wrong, but I cannot imagine anybody explaining the problem any better than Brian Hartline did in just 35 words.

Remember when folks were losing their damn minds over Quinn Ewers getting a $1 million kombucha endorsement deal? Simpler times.

 CONGRATS, GRAD. A lot of Buckeyes graduated yesterday, and every one of them is deserving. But I want to highlight one special graduate: Carlos Snow.

He got that degree and he should be prouder than proud because it has been one hell of a ride for him if you remember his struggles back in 2019.

An OVI conviction in 2017 meant Snow spent more than a week in Hamilton County jail. It was then he decided “no more,” but pride kept him from seeking help. Instead, he suffered in silence, even when losing his job for a printing company last winter because he no longer was physically able to do the work.

He also lost his living quarters when child support (he was divorced in 2006), medical and college bills — he said he owes nearly $7,000 to the University of Cincinnati, where he attempted to finish his degree before money ran out — wiped out his bank account and sent him to the streets.

Along the way, Snow said he twice attempted to end his life. The thought of leaving his three sons fatherless kept him from self-destructing.

He went from homeless and suicidal a little over three years ago to graduating from The Ohio State University. Hollywood couldn't have scripted it any better.

 SONG OF THE DAY. "Tongue Tied" by Grouplove

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