[This is the ninth in a series where The-Ozone looks back on each member of the 2018 signing class and the impact they had this past season, as well as the impact they could have this coming season.]
Josh Proctor came to Ohio State from Owasso High School in Owasso, Oklahoma. He was ranked as the No. 7 safety in the nation and the No. 71 prospect in the 2018 class. Proctor signed with Ohio State over offers from Michigan, Georgia, Florida, Oklahoma, Texas, Nebraska, and Texas-San Antonio. He was an Army All-American as well.
Josh Proctor was arguably the best athlete in Ohio State’s 2018 signing class. His athleticism and overall playmaking in high school had Urban Meyer very excited about his future. He made plays in fall camp, showing promising ball skills, and ended up playing in 11 games last season as a true freshman. Proctor made one tackle on the year. He missed games against TCU, Penn State, and Maryland.
The vast majority of Proctor’s playing time came on special teams, which is normal for Buckeye freshmen who aren’t quarterbacks.
Proctor made plays at times in practice throughout the season and showed the kind of athleticism that made him such a high-priority target in recruiting.
Despite the struggles at safety early last season between Isaiah Pryor and Jahsen Wint, Proctor was never able to break into the top of the depth chart. Had Brendon White not worked out, however, perhaps Proctor would have gotten the call later in the season.
So Now What
Brendon White and Jordan Fuller closed the season as a very productive safety duo for the Buckeyes last year, so expecting Josh Proctor to come in and win a job this season would be a fairly surprising result.
With the possibility that the Ohio State defense is going to utilize a hybrid linebacker/safety, however, Proctor could be looking at a significant role.
For instance, if White or Fuller were to make a move to the hybrid spot, that would leave an opening at one of the safeties for Proctor. And with his size (6-2 190) and athleticism, he can play wherever they need him in the back end.
Ohio State is also breaking in two new secondary coaches, so Proctor has an opportunity right now during workouts to give them an idea of what they will see in the spring. And then once camp gets underway in less than a month, he can show what he does when the ball is in the air.
The Buckeye secondary is in a flux right now. Regardless of how it shakes out, Josh Proctor should find himself in the two-deep somewhere.