Orhian Johnson closely follows Sanzo
Fall camp always seems to produce the juiciest news of the year and this year has been no different. For the next couple weeks I will be scouring the Buckeye-sphere for all the interesting tidbits to share.
So far there has been almost nothing but good news coming out of the WHAC. Obviously the loss of Duron Carter plus the confusion regarding TE Nic DiLillo’s situation stings a little, but everything else has been overwhelmingly positive thus far. Let’s take a look.
- Mike Adams and Andrew Miller are continuing their battle for the starting Left Tackle spot. The positive spin on this is that we have 2 interchangeable players at the position in case of injuries or exhaustion. The negative spin is that neither player has displayed enough to put them over top of the other. The rest of the line goes LG: Justin Boren, C: Mike Brewster, RG: Bryant Browning, RT: JB Shugarts. Surprising, right?
- The offensive line is (hopefully) starting to look better than it has since before the 2006 (and perhaps earlier) season. That may have something to do with the experienced, talented blood we now have on the line; it may also have to do with having to defend beasts like Cameron Heyward, Nathan Williams, and their ilk on a daily basis in practice. All we know, though, is that the offense was able to move the ball effectively during practice and seemed to give Pryor plenty of time in the pocket to find open receivers.
- Speaking of Pryor, last season’s PCL injury may have actually been a blessing in disguise. Given his inability to escape the pocket easily (despite evidence to the contrary) Pryor may have been forced to stand tall and really think about his throws. The end result is a quarterback who is much more confident in his arm this season than last. Perhaps a corner has been turned?
- Taurian Washington is putting in the effort to be a better receiver, repeatedly practicing catching with a team manager while the other receivers perform separate drills in practice. Obviously it’s too early to get excited about T-Wash, at least until we see him catching passes during a real game, but the fact that he has rededicated himself to solving the problem gives some hope for his future development.
- T.Y. Williams is a monster. He’s #18 in that picture below. That is all.
photo by Josh Winslow
- Jamaal Berry is making waves in practice, as is Carlos Hyde. Berry is showing good toughness with his running. Not surprisingly, so has Hyde, but Hyde has also displayed a talent for avoiding big collisions (h/t T. Gerdeman @ the Ozone). That kind of skill is only going to help keep Hyde on the field and prevent injury to our finally deep tailback rotation.
- As for Rod Smith, we still haven’t seen a practice sighting yet. I have to wonder if the coaching staff is simply masking their concerns now, or if he legitimately is having trouble physically making it to Columbus. If he does make it, it’s likely that the chances of him redshirting his first year increase significantly with each day of fall camp he misses.
- Andrew Norwell and David Durham probably don’t like each other anymore, if they ever did. Kudos to Norwell for fighting hard. That’s definitely the kind of attitude we need on the O-line.
The good bit of this info comes from our compatriots at The Ozone and Eleven Warriors, both of whom have been doing a fantastic job keeping up with all of the news coming out of practices this year. Here are a couple of other things worth your time.
- Buckeye Football Analysis – one of the single best Ohio State sports sites for play breakdowns and discussion – posted an article on the development of the infamous Dave play that is worth a look. Of greater interest, however, is the post of the 2002 OSU offensive playbook. Commence fan-boy drooling.
- Our Honor Defend continues his annual summer look at the OSU signees. His breakdowns of how the recruitment went, and other miscellaneous details, are always worth a read. Links to all of the previously covered signees are at the bottom in the “Better Known” table.
- Last but not least, Men of the Scarlet and Gray is running a series of season preview videos. Those should take the edge off the need-for-football jitters.
- As always, Super Special thanks to Josh Winslow for allowing use of his excellent photographs.