Ohio State Football Notebook: ‘It’s his time, it’s my time’

Ohio State Football Notebook Buckeyes Buckeye Football


Get Excited

There is plenty of talk about the large number of receivers who return for the Buckeyes this season, and even a little bit of talk about sophomore Jaylen Harris who only had a couple of catches last season. There has been virtually no talk about redshirt freshman Ellijah Gardiner, however.

But don’t worry.

“Man, a whole bunch of improvement,” sophomore cornerback Marcus Williamson said of Gardiner and Harris. “I know both of those guys, they didn’t come in early, but just seeing the improvement from last season up until now, man they are just phenomenal. Getting open and making plays. Especially Ellijah. You can tell he is getting a lot stronger and faster and they both look real impressive.”

Gardiner was perhaps the most under-the-radar Ohio State football signee in 2017. When Urban Meyer talked about him at the time, he basically said Gardiner was raw, but that you can afford to take a chance on a big, fast athlete like the 6-foot-3 200-pound Gardiner.

“He is a quiet guy. He just comes to work every day,” Williamson said. “You know, scout team, he gave us a lot of fits last year. He’s just a guy that works hard and I think you guys will be excited to see him this coming year.”

No Mystery

Just as they are doing at receiver, the Buckeyes are also returning a good number of cornerbacks from last season. The only departures are Denzel Ward and position coach Kerry Coombs, but those are a pair of pretty significant guys to lose.

Taver Johnson replaced Coombs in the winter as the team’s cornerbacks coach. They have their similarities, but they also have their differences.

How would sophomore Jeff Okudah compare the two?

“They both bring juice, but Coach Coombs, he’s animated,” he said. “Coach Johnson, he’s not as animated, but he still has his moments. So really I don’t think there’s any drop off in energy. Coaching style, obviously every coach has different ways they do things. We’re still getting a chance to learn how he likes to coach.”

One of the things they won’t have to learn is how to interpret what Johnson is thinking. Johnson is sure nothing will be lost in translation.

“No, I’m going to be who I am,” he said. “That’s the first thing I told them when I got here. You’re gonna know what I’m thinking as soon as you look at me. You’ll never have to guess.”

Wyatt Works, Why It Doesn’t

Redshirt freshman offensive guard Wyatt Davis was one of Ohio State’s top-rated signees last season. He didn’t play in 2017, and the depth chart on the interior this spring is very congested, but that doesn’t mean Davis is out of the loop for playing time.

“He’s coming along,” said fifth-year senior right guard Demetrius Knox. “He’s playing a lot more aggressive lately. His pass (protection) is getting better, his run blocking, he’s coming off the ball hard. We’re proud of that.”

When Davis has issues or questions, he asks the veterans what they do to make things work for them. And he’s not alone.

“That’s the beauty of our room,” Knox said. “Whether you’re an older guy or a younger guy, everybody’s just going up to whoever and just ‘How’d this work for you? How’d this look for me? How can I do this with this?’ So everybody’s just trying to get better.”

Anybody Got the Time?

The 2014 Ohio State Buckeyes would have never won a national title without the 2013 recruiting class. Up and down the offense and defense, names like J.T. Barrett, Ezekiel Elliott, Jalin Marshall, Billy Price, Joey Bosa, Darron Lee, Eli Apple, and Vonn Bell played integral parts in securing a championship.

Urban Meyer has been speaking highly of the 2017 recruiting class since the day they all signed. Last season we saw some of them make an impact on the team, including J.K. Dobbins, Chase Young, Jeff Okudah, and Thayer Munford. According to Young, however, last year was just the start. The class of 2017 is going to be felt much more heavily in 2018.

“We bust our butt every day just like Zeke and them did. Eli, all of them,” he said. “Isaiah Pryor — it’s his time, it’s my time. Our whole class, it’s our time, so we’re ready to go.”


3 Responses

  1. I agree with you views to a certain point about JT, but it’s time to move on. I think I can pretty confidently say JT didn’t play on defense against Oklahoma.

    As far as recruiting, I think the biggest thing about Urban’s recruiting, we pretty much have two LEGITIMATE starters at each position. That’s what separates Urban and Satan, um, I men Saban.

    I think you can look at this year’s RBs and see two superstars in JK and Weber with Williams having potential, and then look at the RBs who were on the 2002 team: Maurice was once in a lifetime. However, Lydell and the other Maurice and JaJa. Remember them?

  2. We have the deepest roster in the history of the program imo. And i lived through the 70’s with Woody’s teams. Urban Meyer’s recruiting is what separates him from great coaches like Jim Tressel for example. Tressel stocked the team with mainly talent from Ohio sprinkling in blue chips from around the country. Meyer’s strategy is the opposite. Stocking the roster with highly regarded national recruits with Ohio guys sprinkled in. Its a no brainer that the sky is the limit at OSU for an elite coach. Unfortunately even with a elite coach we still are blowing national championships. Should had one in 2015 and last year.
    Unfortunately Meyer chose his loyalty to JT Barret over giving his team the best chance of winning a national championship. When Meyer named Barret the starter before the spring game last year i predicted the year would be wasted and our strong armed QB’s would be wasted on the bench. JT is horrible in the passing game. He’s late on 90% of his throws and just can’t make decisions fast enough to be effective in the passing game and another year wasn’t going to change that. He couldn’t even hit the RB in stride in the flats. The 31-0 debacle against was mainly because of JT Barret. We saw it again in the rematch with Oklahoma in Cbus. Haskins and Burrow should have been groomed throughout the year to be ready for the playoffs. I guess it made too much sense.

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