Morning Conversational: What Is Ohio State Going To Do With All Of These Receivers?
The Opening Finals are now over and following the festivities, the organizers put together an annual “Dream Team” of the best players at each position.
Essentially, they put together an actual offense and defense of the best performers in the 7-on-7 games and in one-on-ones.
On this year’s Dream Team, there were three receivers selected — Jaxon Smith-Njigba (No. 18 WR in 2020 class), Gee Scott (No. 13 WR), and Julian Fleming (No. 1 WR).
Yes, those three are all committed to Ohio State.
There was much talk throughout the event about Scott having possibly earned a fifth star. Whether that happens or not, the Buckeyes have a dominating presence heading to Columbus next year.
Next week, they could be adding a fourth name to the list in St. Louis receiver Mookie Cooper. Cooper is the No. 11 receiver in the 2020 class and is expected to be choosing Ohio State.
Combined with quarterback Jack Miller — the No. 2 player at his position — the Buckeyes are loading up for a tremendous passing game in the 2020 class.
When you add in Garrett Wilson and Jameson Williams from the 2019 class, some are now wondering if there would be enough footballs to go around should all of these names fall into place.
The answer here is similar to what Ohio State defensive line coach Larry Johnson says about defensive linemen — you can never have enough.
The Buckeyes can never have enough elite pass catchers on the roster because the key to a relentless offense is to have no drop off when players rotate in — and in an up-tempo offense, they have to rotate in.
When Buckeye fans look back at the 2014 national title season, they remember the impact created by Evan Spencer, Devin Smith, and Michael Thomas, but they were only half of the six receivers who rotated in. The others — Dontre Wilson, Jalin Marshall, and Corey Smith — played just as much.
Ohio State had the same “starting six” in 2017 and 2018. Parris Campbell and KJ Hill co-existed perfectly well, as did Johnnie Dixon/Terry McLaurin and Austin Mack/Binjimen Victor.
Ryan Day isn’t going to ask three receivers to run all over the field all game long in an up-tempo offense and not give them a break. Fresh players make plays. Tired players make mistakes.
So how will Ohio State have roles for the possible six receivers that they are looking to sign over the last two classes? The same way they’ve done it for most of the decade — by sharing the load.
In other words, this is the kind of problem that coaches work pretty damn hard to have.
Solving it is the fun part.