Football

Spring Practice Insider: Buckeyes Back at it Following Break

The Buckeyes were back on the field for practice No. 3 of spring camp, which was also their first in pads. The media was permitted to watch the first hour, which featured only drills and no real scrimmaging of any sort. There did not appear to be any significant changes from the first week of practice, but there is still plenty of time for intrigue to hit.

Trying to write down what you see while watching practice is almost as hectic as the practice itself, as the players roll in and out in constant motion, so trying to keep track of an entire depth chart is sometimes a lost cause. For the most part, the first team is the same as it was two weeks ago, with players rolling in with the twos in drills. There was no real third or fourth team.

Superlatives

The video screen inside the WHAC was displaying statistics for players and where they ranked in certain categories. The categories were Speed, Explosives, and Effort.

The speed leaderboard was 1) Denzel Ward (21.1 mph), 2) walk-on defensive back Elijaah Goins; 3) cornerback Kendall Sheffield; 4) cornerback Marcus Williamson; 5) cornerback Jeff Okudah; 6) receiver K.J. Hill; 7) cornerback Josh Norwood; 8) receiver Binjimen Victor; 9) cornerback Rodjay Burns; 10) linebacker Malik Harrison. Speeds were only given for the top players in each group.

The explosives leaderboard was 1) safety Jahsen Wint (74, whatever that means); 2) Elijah Goins; 3) Kendall Sheffield; 4) receiver Johnnie Dixon; 5) linebacker Justin Hilliard; 6) safety Erick Smith; 7) safety Wayne Davis; 8) linebacker Dante Booker; 9) cornerback Shaun Wade; 10) linebacker Keandre Jones.

The effort leaderboard was 1) defensive end Rashod Berry (899 yards, whatever that means); 2) Jahsen Wint; 3) Elijah Goins; 4) running back Mike Weber; 5) running back J.K. Dobbins; 6) tight end Luke Farrell; 7) [blank]; 8) running back Demario McCall; 9) Johnnie Dixon; 10) running back Antonio Williams.

The five fastest players among the linebackers and tight ends were 1) Malik Harrison (18.8 mph); 2) Justin Hilliard; 3) Dante Booker; 4) Keandre Jones; 5) Luke Farrell. Where is Jerome Baker? Maybe they don’t test everybody.

Deep Thoughts

Quarterback J.T. Barrett threw the deep ball very well in drills at the end of our viewing window. He was hitting receivers in stride in coverage. Johnnie Dixon was again running well. Terry McLaurin ran under a beautiful deep ball from Tate Martell. It was the best throw from Martell that I saw, and I did see a couple of pretty bad ones.

Even before the deep ball drill, Barrett was having success downfield, finding Johnnie Dixon on one particular throw down the right sideline early on.

Practice Videos

Here is J.K. Dobbins having a rough spot and being told about it by Tony Alford.

Running back drills that could also make for a great party game.

Quarterbacks dropping it in over a “defender”.

Depth Charting

QB – Barrett/Burrow/Haskins/Martell
RB – Weber/Williams/McCall/Dobbins
WR – Mack/McLaurin
WR – Dixon/Victor/White
HB – Campbell/Hill/Glover-Williams
TE – Alexander/Hausmann/Farrell/Hawkins
LT – Jones/Alabi
LG – Jordan/Burrell
C – Price/Taylor
RG – Knox/Pridgeon
RT – Prince/Bowen

The defense was unchanged.

Damon Arnette and Denzel Ward are still your starting cornerbacks, and Arnette looked particularly good in matchup drills. Erick Smith and Damon Webb are still the ones at safety. Chris Worley is still your middle linebacker.

Emptying the Notebook

+ Pat Elflein and Raekwon McMillan were on hand.

+ The punt returners were the same as last time: Eric Glover-Williams, K.J. Hill, Kendall Sheffield, Shaun Wade, and Demario McCall.

+ We have yet to see Demario McCall anywhere but running back.

+ The situation at safety behind Smith and Webb still looks undecided. Jordan Fuller had some trouble with Parris Campbell today.

+ It was another good day for Campbell, by the way. He seems to have found a home at H-back, and K.J. Hill behind him might be the most consistent pass catcher I’ve seen.

+ Freshman Baron Browning was mixing in with Justin Hilliard and the twos at middle linebacker.

+ I didn’t get to see anything from the defensive line because they stayed on the opposite site of the practice field.

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