Oklahoma-Ohio State preview

By | September 7, 2017

The college football schedule maker has been in fine form so far this year. Last week, they kicked off the season with #1 Alabama playing #3 Florida State. And this week it will be more of the same with second-ranked Ohio State hosting #5 Oklahoma in another game with major national implications. The Buckeyes-Sooners’ match-up also features some major Heisman implications as both QBs – J.T. Barrett (#16, 6-2, 220) and Oklahoma’s Baker Mayfield (#6, 6-1, 220) – are among the top half dozen or so leading legitimate contenders for his year’s collegiate player-of-the-year honors. Interestingly, though, neither Barrett nor Mayfield is considered to be more than a marginal draft prospects. Neither is particularly big by today’s NFL standards and neither has a prototypical strong arm, but both are accurate passers who move around the pocket well.

While the QB match-up in this game doesn’t necessarily have a lot of draft implications, the OU-OSU contest does feature a draft treat when mammoth Oklahoma junior OT Orlando Brown (#78, 6-7, 345) battles the dynamic Ohio State edge rushing fleet including DEs Sam Hubbard (#6, 6-5, 265, JR), Tyquan Lewis (#59, 6-4, 265), Jalyn Holmes (#11, 6-5, 270) and sophomore Nick Bosa (#97,6-4, 270), the brother of 2016 Chargers’ first rounder Joey Bosa who won’t actually be draft eligible until 2019. In fact, the entire Ohio State defense is loaded. The LBs – MLB Chris Worley (#35, 6-2, 230) and junior OLBs dante Booker (#33, 6-3, 240) and Jerome Baker (#17, 6-1, 225) – each has at least second-day potential as do redshirt sophomore DT Dre’mont Jones (#86, 6-3, 295) and junior CB Denzal Ward (#12, 5-10 195), while DT Tracy Sprinkle (#93, 6-3, 295) and safety Damon Webb (#7, 5-10, 195) are solid veterans with later-round potential.

Along with QB Barrett, the Ohio State is also very talented. Redshirt sophomore RB Mike Weber (#25, 5-9, 215), for example, is considered to be one of the top second-tier backs in the country after the likes of Saquon Barkley of Penn State and LSU’s Derrius Guice. Weber, though, battled through some leg injury issues through training camp, but if healthy will be running behind an excellent offensive line led by C Billy Price (#54, 6-3, 315), along with OTs Jamarco Jones (#74, 6-5, 310) and emerging junior Isaiah Prince (#6-6, 310).

Meanwhile, other Sooners to watch other than QB Mayfield and OT Brown including CB Jordan Thomas (#7, 6-0, 185), arguably the best cover corner in the pass-happy Big XII; big-play junior TE Mark Andrews (#81, 6-5, 255); OLB Ogbonnia Okronkwo (#31, 6-1, 240), SS Steven Parker (#10, 6-0, 205); and DE D.J. Ward (#87, 6-2, 240). Should be fun. Enjoy!