2018 OHIO STATE BUCKEYES FOOTBALL PREVIEW

HEAD COACH: Urban Meyer (73 – 8), Seventh season

CAREER RECORD: 177 – 31

OFFENSIVE COORDINATORS: Kevin Wilson, Ryan Day

DEFENSIVE COORDINATORS: Greg Schiano, Alex Grinich

STADIUM: Ohio Stadium (104,944)

 

2018 SCHEDULE

September 1 Oregon State

September 8 Rutgers

September 15 vs. TCU at Arlington, Texas

September 22 Tulane

September 29 at Penn State

October 6 Indiana

October 13 Minnesota

October 20 at Purdue

November 3 Nebraska

November 10 at Michigan State

November 17 at Maryland

November 24 Michigan

 

2017 RESULTS

Indiana 49 – 21

Oklahoma 16 – 31

Army 38 – 7

UNLV 54 – 21

Rutgers 56 – 0

Maryland 62 – 14

Nebraska 56 – 14

Penn State 39 – 38

Iowa 24 – 55

Michigan State 48 – 3

Illinois 52 – 14

Michigan 31 – 20

Wisconsin 27 – 21

USC 24 – 7

 

2017 TEAM OFFENSIVE STATS

SCORING: 41.1

RUSHING: 243.2

PASSING: 262.8

TOTAL OFFENSE: 506.0

 

2017 TEAM DEFENSIVE STATS

SCORING: 19.0

RUSHING: 105.1

PASSING: 195.9

TOTAL DEFENSE: 300.9

 

FIVE – YEAR WINNING TREND

2013: 12 – 2

2014: 14 – 1

2015: 12 – 1

2016: 11 – 2

2017: 12 – 2

 

RETURNING STARTERS OFFENSE: 7

RETURNING STARTERS DEFENSE: 5

 

RETURNING LEADERS

PASSING: Dwayne Haskins, 40 – 57 – 565 – 4TD – 1INT

RUSHING: JK Dobbins, 194 – 1,403 – 7TD

RECEIVING: KJ Hill, 56 – 549 – 3TD

TACKLES: Jordan Fuller, 70

SACKS: Nick Bosa, 8.5

INTERCEPTIONS: Jordan Fuller, Damon Arnette 2

 

TOP 10 RECRUITS

Nicholas Petit-Frere, OT Tampa, Florida

Taron Vincent, DT Bradenton, Florida

Tyreke Johnson, CB Jacksonville, Florida

Jaelen Gill, HB Westerville, Ohio

Tyreke Smith, DE Cleveland, Ohio

Jeremy Ruckert, TE Lindenhurst, New York

Teradja Mitchell, LB Virginia Beach, Virginia

Tommy Togiai, DT Pocatello, Idaho

Matthew Jones, C Brooklyn, New York

Josh Proctor, S Owasso, Oklahoma

 

OFFENSE PREVIEW

Ohio State has one of the best systems in the country under head coach Urban Meyer. Quarterback JT Barrett is no longer behind center after completing one of the most accomplished careers in Big Ten history. Barrett will be replaced by one of three very strong candidates including Dwayne Haskins, Joe Burrow and Tate Martell. Haskins may have the inside track after opening some eyes in the Michigan game last season. He must prove he can run this offense smoothly and handle more complex zone – read responsibilities. Burrow is a poised quarterback and is more accurate than Haskins, but doesn’t have the upside of Haskins. Martell is strong instinctively and can run the football but needs more polish as a passer.

The running game is in good hands with sophomore JK Dobbins. Dobbins amassed 1,403 rushing yards while averaging 7.2 yards per ride is freshman season. Junior Mike Weber is healthy and should provide Ohio State with a dynamic duo in their backfield.

The line returns to starters in Isaiah Prince and Michael Jordan. Jordan is an All-Big 10 candidate.

The receiving corps is deep and returns its top seven from last season. Parris Campbell will be the featured receiver in this offense. KJ Hill has developed into a high – quality possession receiver. Ohio State has several field stretchers, including Johnnie Dixon who scored eight touchdowns on just 18 receptions in 2017.

 

DEFENSE PREVIEW

Ohio State produced a top – 10 defense in 2017 with a nation – leading 114 tackles for loss. Coach Meyer once this aggressive defense to continue in 2018. DE Nick Bosa will have a more prominent role as well sophomore sensation DE Chase Young.  Bosa led the Buckeyes with 8.5 sacks last season. Dre’Mont Jones will be a force on the inside along with Robert Landers.

One concern for Ohio State is at linebacker. Malik Harrison is perhaps the most athletic of the group, but gets caught out of position too often. Tuf Borland suffered an Achilles injury leaving Justin Hilliard and Baron Browning in a tight battle for the middle linebacker position. Borland is expected to return in 2018.

Ohio State’s secondary has plenty of promise despite losing Denzel Ward to the NFL. Jeffrey Okudah and Shaun Wade are very talented, but Damon Arnette and Kendall Sheffield have more experience. Jordan Fuller is considered one of the more complete players at safety.

 

SPECIAL TEAMS

Punter Drew Chrisman, kicker Sean Nurenberger, long snapper Liam McCullough and kickoff man Blake Haubeil all return. The Buckeyes also have experience in the return game with Parris Campbell, KJ Hill and Mike Weber returning.

 

PREDICTION

Ohio State finished 2017 with wins over Michigan, Wisconsin and USC in the Rose Bowl. The blemish that hurt Ohio State was the embarrassing loss at Iowa 55 – 24. This team is still talented enough to win the Big Ten championship. They must overcome the loss of several key players, but this roster is loaded with hungry talent and an aggressive defense that will come after their opponents.

 

PROJECTED RECORD: 12 – 1, 8 – 1 Big Ten.

 

2018 ROSTER:

1             Dixon, Johnnie   WR         5-11       198        JR           West Palm Beach, Fla. (Dwyer)

1             Okudah, Jeffrey CB          6-1         199        FR           Grand Prairie, Texas (South Grand Prairie)

2             Dobbins, J.K.      RB          5-10       212        FR           La Grange, Texas (La Grange)

2             Young, Chase     DE          6-5         265        FR           Upper Marlboro, Md. (DeMatha Catholic)

4             Fuller, Jordan     SAF         6-2         204        SO          Norwood, N.J. (Old Tappan)

5             Browning, Baron LB        6-3         238        FR           Fort Worth, Texas (Kennedale)

6             Curtis, Kory         QB          6-3         230        FR           Cape Coral, Fla. (Island Coast)

7             Haskins, Dwayne QB       6-3         218        RS FR     Potomac, Md. (Bullis School)

8             Sheffield, Kendall CB       6-0         193        SO          Missouri City, Texas

9             Cornell, Jashon  DE          6-3         274        RS SO    St. Paul, Minn. (Cretin-Derham Hall)

9             Victor, Binjimen WR         6-4         200        SO          Pompano Beach, Florida (Coconut Creek)

10           Burrow, Joe        QB          6-3         215        RS SO    The Plains, Ohio (Athens)

10           Riep, Amir           SAF         5-11       195        FR           Cincinnati (Colerain)

11           Mack, Austin       WR         6-2         215        SO          Fort Wayne, Ind. (Bishop Luers)

12           Baldwin, Matthew QB    6-3         200        FR           Austin, Texas (Lake Travis)

12           Banks, Sevyn      CB          6-1         190        FR           Orlando, Fla. (Jones)

13           Johnson, Tyreke CB         6-1         190        FR           Jacksonville, Fla. (Trinity Christian Academy)

14           Hill, K.J.                WR         6-0         198        RS SO    Little Rock, Ark. (North Little Rock)

14           Pryor, Isaiah       SAF         6-2         197        FR           Lawrenceville, Ga. (IMG Academy)

15           Davis, Wayne     DB          6-0         195        RS FR     Norfolk, Va (Lake Taylor H.S.)

15           Harris, Jaylen      WR         6-5         215        FR           Cleveland (Cleveland Heights)

16           Jones, Keandre   LB           6-2         228        SO          Olney, Md. (Good Counsel)

18           Cooper, Jonathon DL      6-4         257        SO          Gahanna, Ohio (Lincoln)

18           Martell, Tate      QB          5-11       207        FR           Las Vegas, Nevada (Bishop Gorman)

19           Gant, Dallas        LB           6-3         215        FR           Toledo, Ohio (St. John’s Jesuit)

19           Metzer, Jake      P             6-2         220        SO          Doylestown, Pa. (Central Bucks West)

20           Sinclair, Darryl   WR         5-9         195        SO          Solon, Ohio (Solon)

20           Werner, Pete     LB           6-3         235        FR           Indianapolis (Catherdral)

21           Campbell, Parris WR       6-1         208        JR           Akron (St. Vincent-St. Mary)

21           Williamson, Marcus CB  5-10       185        FR           Westerville, Ohio (IMG Academy)

23           White, De’Shawn WR     5-9         170        SO          Canton, Ohio (McKinley)

23           Wint, Jahsen       SAF         5-10       196        RS FR     Brooklyn, N.Y. (Erasmus Hall)

24           Wade, Shaun      CB          6-1         192        FR           Jacksonville, Florida (Trinity Christian Academy)

25           Weber, Mike      RB          5-10       212        RS SO    Detroit, Mich. (Cass Tech)

25           White, Brendon SAF         6-2         210        FR           Powell, Ohio (Olentangy Liberty)

26           Blanton, Michael SAF      6-1         195        SO          Cincinnati, Ohio

26           Williams, Antonio RB      5-11       210        SO          New London, N.C. (North Stanly)

28           DeMaccio, Dominic K      5-8         180        FR           Columbus, Ohio (DeSales)

28           Knight, Jeremiah RB        5-10       195        SO          Jefferson, Ohio (Jefferson Area)

29           Dever, Kevin       SAF         6-0         190        FR           Cleveland, Ohio (St. Edward’s)

30           McCall, Demario WR       5-9         193        FR           North Ridgeville, Ohio (North Ridgeville H.S.)

32           Borland, Tuf       LB           6-1         229        RS FR     Bolingbrook, Ill. (Bolingbrook)

33           Booker, Dante    LB           6-3         240        SR           Akron (St. Vincent-St. Mary)

33           Teague, Master RB          5-11       215        FR           Murfreesboro, Tenn. (Blackman)

34           Rossi, Mitch        RB          6-0         235        FR           Franklin, Tenn. (Franklin)

37           Backenstoe, Alex LB        6-1         233        JR           Hilliard, OH (Davidson)

37           Malone, Derrick TE           6-5         245        JR           Dayton, Ohio (Thurgood Marshall H.S.)

38           Beck, Alex           LB           6-2         220        SO          Hudson, Ohio (Hudson)

38           Berry, Rashod    TE           6-4         255        RS SO    Lorain, Ohio (Lorain)

39           Harrison, Malik  LB           6-3         240        SO          Columbus, Ohio (Walnut Ridge)

41           Jester, Hayden   LB           6-1         230        SO          Cincinnati, Ohio (LaSalle)

42           Robinson, Bradley LS      6-1         220        JR           Troy, Mich. (Athens)

44           McMahon, Amari RB       6-0         205        JR           Dublin, Ohio (Scioto)

46           Arnette, Damon               CB          6-0         195        RS SO    Fort Lauderdale, Fla. (St. Thomas Aquinas)

47           Hilliard, Justin    LB           6-1         230        SO          Cincinnati, Ohio (St. Xavier)

48           Duarte, Tate       TE                          245        SR           Poland, Ohio (Poland)

49           McCullough, Liam LS       6-2         228        RS SO    Columbus, Ohio (Worthington Kilbourne)

50           Brock, Nathan    OL          6-4         288        SO          Powell, Ohio (Olentangy Liberty)

51           Jackson, Antwuan DT                     310        JR           Ellenwood, Ga. (Cedar Grove)

52           Davis, Wyatt       OL          6-4         315        FR           Bellflower, Calif. (St. John Bosco)

53           Hamilton, Davon DT        6-4         310        RS SO    Pickerington, Ohio (Central)

54           Jones, Matthew OL                         305        FR           Brooklyn, N.Y. (Erasmus Hall)

55           Barrow, Malik    DT          6-2         280        RS FR     Tampa, Fla. (Catholic & IMG Academy)

56           Cox, Aaron          DL          6-3         255        FR           Mantua, Ohio (Crestwood)

58           Alabi, Joshua      OL          6-5         305        RS SO    Detroit, Mich. (Cass Tech)

59           Prince, Isaiah     OL          6-7         310        JR           Greenbelt, Md. (Eleanor Roosevelt)

60           Pfenning, Blake OL          6-5         295        JR           Wapakoneta, Ohio (Wapakoneta)

61           Cupp, Gavin        OL          6-4         308        RS FR     Leipsic, Ohio (Leipsic H.S.)

62           Pahl, Brandon    OL          6-2         299        JR           Cutler, Ohio (Warren)

63           Woidke, Kevin    OL          6-6         300        JR           Cleveland, Ohio (St. Ignatius)

65           Thomas, Phillip  LS           6-0         230        JR           Louisville, Ohio (Louisville)

66           Pridgeon, Malcolm OL    6-7         310        JR           Central Islip, N.Y (Central Islip H.S.)

67           Landers, Robert DL          6-1         283        SO          Dayton, Ohio (Huber Heights Wayne)

68           Hamdan, Zaid     DT          5-11       275        FR           Mason, Ohio (Mason)

69           Burrell, Matthew OL       6-3         306        RS SO    Woodbridge, Va. (Hylton)

70           Donald, Noah     DL          6-1         275        SO          Uniontown, Ohio (Walsh Jesuit)

71           Myers, Josh        OL          6-5         308        FR           Miamisburg, Ohio (Miamisburgh)

72           Togiai, Tommy   DT          6-2         300        FR           Pocatello, Idaho (Highland)

73           Jordan, Michael OL          6-7         310        SO          Canton, Mich. (Plymouth)

74           Wray, Max          OL          6-7         305        FR           Franklin, Tenn. (Franklin)

75           Munford, Thayer OL       6-6         319        FR           Cincinnati, Ohio (Massillon Washington)

76           Bowen, Branden OL        6-7         312        RS SO    Draper, Utah (Corner Canyon)

78           Knox, Demetrius OL        6-4         312        JR           Fort Worth, Texas (All Saints Episcopal)

79           Taylor, Brady      OL          6-5         302        JR           Columbus, Ohio (Bishop Ready)

80           Saunders, C.J.    WR         5-11       185        JR           Dublin, Ohio (Coffman H.S)

81           Hausmann, Jake TE         6-4         245        RS FR     Cincinnati, Ohio (Archbishop Moeller)

82           Prater, Garyn      WR         6-4         205        FR           Cincinnati, Ohio (Wyoming)

83           McLaurin, Terry WR         6-1         204        JR           Indianapolis (Cathedral)

84           Davin, Brock       TE           6-3         235        SO          Cincinnati, Ohio (St. Xavier)

86           Jones, Dre’Mont DL         6-3         290        RS SO    Cleveland, Ohio (St. Ignatius)

87           Gardiner, Ellijah WR         6-3         200        FR           Kemp, Texas (Kemp)

89           Farrell, Luke        TE           6-6         250        RS FR     Perry, Ohio (Perry H.S.)

90           Kristan, Bryan    K             6-3         195        JR           Canfield, Ohio (Canfield)

91           Chrisman, Drue  P             6-3         215        SO          Cincinnati, Ohio (Cincinnati LaSalle H.S.)

92           Garrett, Haskell DL          6-2         293        FR           Las Vegas, Nev. (Bishop Gorman)

95           Haubeil, Blake    K             6-4         225        FR           Buffalo, N.Y. (Canisius)

96           Nuernberger, Sean K       6-1         228        JR           Buckner, Ky. (Oldham Co.)

97           Bosa, Nick           DL          6-4         263        SO          Fort Lauderdale, Fla. (St. Thomas Aquinas)

98           Cage, Jerron       DL          6-3         295        FR           Cincinnati, OH (Winton Woods)

 

Coaching Staff

Urban Meyer – Head Coach

Greg Schiano – Associate Head Coach/Defensive Coordinator/Safeties

Kevin Wilson – Offensive Coordinator/Tight Ends

Tony Alford – Assistant Head Coach for Offense/Running Backs

Billy Davis – Linebackers

Ryan Day – Co-Offensive Coordinator/Quarterbacks

Larry Johnson – Assistant Head Coach/Defensive Line

Zach Smith – Wide Receivers Coach/Recruiting Coord.

Alex Grinch – Co-Defensive Coordinator / Safeties

Greg Studrawa – Offensive Line Coach

Taver Johnson – Cornerbacks Coach / Special Teams Coordinator

Mickey Marotti – Asst AD, FB Sport Performance

Tim Hinton – Executive Director for Football Relations/Special Assistant to HC

Matt Thurin – Quality Control Coach – Defense

Louie Addazio – Graduate Assistant – Offense

Corey Dennis – Graduate Assistant – Offense

Brian Voltolini – Director of Football Operations

Ryan Stamper – Director of Player Development

Mark Pantoni – Director of Player Personnel