Smith recruited well, and that's about the best I can say about him.
These are the same kids and the only difference is the ball getting to them.
Not really. Same kids with an extra year of experience and coaching. The reality of college football is that you gain 25% more experience every season. That's huge for development. And the ball was getting to them just as often with Barrett. They had more drops as a unit before Hartline took over.
PSU game at home 13 passes in a row no drops who was their coach? JT was a average qb when it came to passing.
I'm confused by this. JT is average and the receivers are great, which is why he went 13 for 13 in the 4th quarter? That's essentially what you're saying. So in the games that Barrett went less than 50% completions, it must have been the receivers' fault. Barrett was an above average college QB, otherwise he never would have started anywhere. And he wouldn't have three of the Top 10 passing seasons in Ohio State history. Haskins was a better passing QB - I'm not arguing that. But, if you dig into OSU's passing and receiving stats over the past four seasons, there are some really interesting details.
|2015 (Jones & Barrett)
In 2015, Michael Thomas, Jalin Marshall and Curtis Samuel each had 5 dropped passes
In 2016, Baugh had 7 dropped passes, Weber had 4, and Brown and Samuel each had 3
In 2017, Campbell had 6 dropped passes, Baugh had 4, and McLaurin and Victor had 3 each
In 2018, Mack dropped 6, and Campbell and Victor had 3 drops.
The WR drops decreased by 20% from 2016 to 2018. Even more significantly, the QB pressures were cut in half for Haskins in 2018 from what Barrett experienced in 2016 and were only 55% of what Barrett saw in 2018. Throwing from a clean pocket is a lot easier than scrambling for your life and trying to complete passes.
I would argue that more than just replacing Barrett with Haskins resulted in a higher completion rate in 2018.
1 - O-line play was markedly better.
2 - WR play improved and they dropped fewer passes.
As far as fans' opinions about Smith, just read through the comments in these articles dating a year or more before the alleged domestic violence story broke.
As far putting players in the NFL, how many of the Zach Smith #DevelopedHere wide receivers are still playing on Sundays and how have done? Noah Brown, Curtis Samuel and Michael Thomas remain in the League. Of them, Thomas, and Samuel to an extent, are the only ones making headlines. You can make a case for Devin Smith, but he wasn't recruited by Zach Smith. And we have no idea how this year's draftees will do. Are those guys in the League because Smith put them there, or because they were talents who were going to get there anyway?