Today, our series profiles one of the all time greats that ever wore an Ohio State uniform, none other than Jack Tatum.
Tatum was born in North Carolina but grew up in Passaic, NJ. Jack was a bit of a late bloomer, not beginning to play football until his sophomore year. The late start didn’t seem to hurt his capabilities as he played running back and fullback as well as defensive back. He played well enough to be named first-team All-State, as well as a high school All American his senior year.
Woody Hayes recruited Tatum as a fullback, but assistant coach Lou Holtz talked Hayes into switching Tatum to defensive back during Tatum’s freshman season. So keep that in mind the next time you see Lou on TWWL.
Jack Tatum came to OSU as part of the Super Soph class. He was first team all Big Ten in 1968, 1969 and 1970. In 1969 and 1970 he was a unanimous All American and also named the National Defensive Player of the Year in 1970. Tatum helped lead the Buckeyes to a 27-2 record in his three seasons as a starter, with one national championship win in 1968, Tatum’s first season with the team. In his three games against TSUN, Jack’s teams went 2-1.
In today’s episode of tBBC’s Kickoff to Countdown series, we come to #66, celebrating Ohio State’s 45-21 win over Northwestern on October 19th, 1968. The Buckeyes had come off a so-so year in 1967 (6-3), and 1968 was the debut season of the Super-Sophomores.
Ohio State entered the game 3-0, have previously beaten #1 ranked Purdue 13-0 in one of the most inspired performances I’ve ever seen. Theoretically, the stage was set for a “letdown” game hosting Northwestern. Except, not really. N’Western entered the game 0-4, did not improve their lot against OSU and ended the season 1-9.
This win moved the Buckeyes to 4-0 and gave them another “W” in what would end up being an undefeated season.
It’s that time of year again! Time for the Super Bowl! The Cleveland Browns are once again spectators and luckily for all of us here in Ohio so are the Pittsburgh Steelers. If we can’t go at least they aren’t either. How about the Buckeyes that are going to the big game? We’ll dig into it… Let’s rumble!
Four former Ohio State Buckeyes will be on the field on Super Sunday and they all will see significant action. Ironically, they all will be on the same sideline and wearing red.
Ted Ginn Jr, Donte Whitner, Alex Boone and Larry Grant will represent THE Ohio State University in the Mercedes-Benz Super Dome in New Orleans, Louisiana as members of the San Francisco 49ers during Super Bowl 47. Read More
Just a short while ago the news came down the pipe. Jack Tatum, former Buckeye Corner and Oakland Raider Safety, passed away today from a heart attack. Tatum was player feared around both the College and NFL ranks for his ferocious hits and is now recognized for it as the namesake of a weekly team award – the “Jack Tatum hit of the week” which is voted on by the players.
Tatum is a member of the College Football Hall of Fame (2005) and was one of the “Super Sophomores” that graced the fields of Ohio Stadium and rejuvenated Woody Hayes’ career at the onset of the 10 year war. He was an All-American for all 3 years that he played: 1968-1970.
We’ll miss you Jack.