CLEVELAND, Ohio – Ohio State is not playing Saturday, although Buckeyes coaches and players wish they were. The team's progress has been tangible. The development of freshman quarterback J.T. Barrett is startling. The defense is no longer an unlocked door with a welcome mat spread in front of it. (At least, not completely.) Urban Meyer said recently of injured senior quarterback, "Braxton Miller is our quarterback," meaning Miller, one of the great thrill shows in college football in the open field, will not lose his starting job next year because of the two serious injuries to the shoulder of his throwing arm that have sidelined him in 2014. Maybe so. There is no reason for Meyer to court controversy when his team is coming together after the disruption of Miller's absence. Perhaps 2015 in Columbus will be like Nebraska in 1995, when quarterback Tommie Frazier returned after missing the second half of the previous season with a blood clot and guided the Cornhuskers to the national championship. Frazier finished second to Ohio State's Eddie George in the 1995 Heisman Trophy voting. He remains one of the great big-game quarterbacks in college football history. But maybe Miller has taken too many hits as a quarterback ...
COLUMBUS, Ohio -- In the summer of 2011, J.T. Barrett and his high school football coach drove 300 miles through the Texas heat to a one-day football camp at the University of Texas. The purpose of the trip, Jim Garfield believed, was for the best leader he had coached to be offered a scholarship by the homestate Longhorns. At the end of the camp, Barrett and Garfield drove back to their hometown of Wichita Falls, fourth-and-a-half hours north of Austin, without an offer. That was the first step toward making Barrett an Ohio State Buckeye. "There was some real interest, it just didn't unfold," Garfield said by phone Thursday. "The University of Texas was working him very hard, but they didn't offer him a scholarship. I think it bothered him a little bit because he was a Texas kid." Did either Texas or Texas A&M, the two powers in his homestate, ever come through with an offer? "Nope," Barrett told cleveland.com in the moments after his fifth college start at Maryland last week. Why not? "I don't know. You're asking the wrong guy," Barrett said. When Texas cracked open that door, Barrett was able to become the right guy for the Buckeyes. He was the first quarterback ...
COLUMBUS, Ohio — It may be too early to have the talk, but Urban Meyer didn't want to wait around. After seemingly being eliminated completely from the playoff conversation after losing to Virginia Tech in Week 2, Ohio State finds itself ranked 15th and on the cusp of College Football Playoff relevancy after three straight wins and one wild weekend in college football. Five of the top eight teams in the AP poll lost for the first time ever last week. Any team with the most fleeting hopes of making the playoff now has a reason to talk about it. So that's what Meyer did with the Buckeyes this week. "We do that every year this time of year," Meyer said after Wednesday's practice. "I show the rankings and the teams. If you look at it, everything is wide open, college football is pretty open this year." Meyer said they didn't spend a lot of time talking about it, maybe five minutes. There's still a lot that needs to happen for the Buckeyes to be fully back in the conversation, namely winning out and hoping a handful of teams in front of them lose. That's asking a lot, but it's not impossible. "I can ...
Redshirt-freshman quarterback J.T. Barrett (16) carries the ball during a game against maryland on Oct. 4 at Byrd Stadium in College Park, Md. OSU won, 52-24. Credit: Mark Batke / Photo editor There’s no doubt about it — J.T. Barrett is ahead of the curve. Through five starts for Ohio State, the redshirt-freshman quarterback is on pace to have the best statistical season ever for a Buckeye signal caller. From a numbers standpoint, that’s nearly unbelievable — and theoretically would make him a candidate for the Heisman Trophy — but he’s nowhere near winning that kind of hardware just yet. Barrett’s numbers are on another level. If OSU makes the Big Ten Championship game — which it could very well do — he would have another eight games under his belt before the Heisman is voted on, barring any sort of injury or other setback. On his current track, that would give him about 3,520 passing yards, 44 passing touchdowns and a ...
Updated OCT 08, 2014 11:43p ET With Michigan's 2-4 start, speculation has swirled about the Wolverines soon being in the market for a new head coach. Surely you've heard the speculation about Jim Harbaugh (or perhaps his brother John) being high on the list of potential candidates to replace Brady Hoke if Hoke is fired, but what if neither of those options pan out? They might want to give another Ohio-born coach with a Super Bowl on his resumé a call: Jon Gruden. Of course Gruden's name comes up annually for jobs, but he seems to be well ensconced in the analyst's chair on ESPN's Monday Night Football broadcast. And yet ... what if he has a sense of unfinished business? Thanks to the work of a Univeristy of Dayton athletics communications intern, we now know the former Flyers quarterback has seen himself occupying the big chair in Ann Arbor at some point in his life. Gruden has never been a college head coach, but he did some time as an assistant at Tennessee, Southeast Missouri State, Pacific and Pitt on his way to being an assistant for the Green Bay Packers and Philadelphia Eagles. He was head coach of the ...
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