Meyer Updates Status of Hall, Williams
By Brandon Castel
COLUMBUS — One will play, one won’t.
That’s what Urban Meyer had to say Wednesday about the status of seniors Nathan Williams and Jordan Hall as the Buckeyes close in on their first season-opener under the new regime.
Photo by Jim Davidson
Hall and Williams, key players on each side of the ball for Ohio State, have both been on the comeback trail for some time now, but it appears as though Williams could be available against the Miami Redhawks on Saturday.
“He had a good day (on Monday) when he did some live work and he practiced with our defense today,” Meyer said following practice on Wednesday evening.
“So, that’s up to our defensive coaches and we’re going to meet on that tomorrow morning. I’d like to get him on the field.”
It was the first time Williams has participated in back-to-back live practices since he injured his knee at the beginning of last season. What was believed to be a minor issue that would only keep Williams out for a handful of games eventually turned into a season-ending problem that ultimately required microfracture surgery.
The doctors have been cautious in bringing Williams back slowly from the injury, which ultimately cost him his true senior season a year ago, but Meyer plans to get him in the game as long as he’s getting a green light from the medical staff.
“Well, if he can’t go, he can’t go. But they told us he can go,” Meyer said Wednesday.
“So, we won’t wear him out, but we hope we get him on the field.”
Meyer has had nothing but praise for Williams, both as a player and a tireless worker, since he took over the job back in January. He has been anxiously waiting to see what Williams might be able to bring to an already loaded defensive line.
“He has great hands and he’s a quick-twitch guy,” Meyer said of the fifth-year senior out of Miami Trace High School.
“People told me he was one of our best players the couple last years on defense. He looked really good (Tuesday). He’s a good player, obviously.”
The 6-3, 249-pound defensive end has started 12 games, recording 92 tackles, 11 sacks and 26 tackles-for-loss over his four-year career at Ohio State. He was one of the best players on the 2010 Buckeyes, who won the Sugar Bowl – before it was vacated.
Williams had 46 tackles, 5 sacks, 12 tackles-for-loss, an interception, a forced fumble and two fumble recoveries as a junior that season.
Photo by Jm Davidson
While the news certainly appears to be good for Williams, the Buckeyes will open the season without the services of tailback Jordan Hall. The senior out of Jeannette, Pa. has been on the shelf since tearing a tendon in his toe over the summer, and he won’t be available for the game on Saturday.
“Yeah, he’s jogging,” Meyer said. “He’s a couple weeks away.”
The target date for Hall has been the week-two matchup with Central Florida. That would be the low end of recovery time for Hall, who cut his foot on a piece of glass while taking his dog for a walk.
If Hall is still a ‘couple weeks’ away, he might not be back until Ohio State’s third nonconference game against Cal on Sept. 15. The Buckeyes will play UAB a week later I their final nonconference tune-up before a huge early-season trip to East Lansing on Sept. 29.
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