St. Louis Rams Draft Christian Bryant in Round Seven

With the 241st pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, the St. Louis Rams selected Ohio State safety Christian Bryant. Bryant missed most of his senior season after suffering a broken ankle late in the game against Wisconsin. Bryant was a three year starter for the Buckeyes and was named a team captain his senior season. Over the course of his career at Ohio State, he recorded 171 tackles, had two interceptions and three forced fumbles. He was named second team All-Big Ten during his junior season and was second on the team overall in total tackles (only trailing Ryan Shazier). Take a look at your new safety, Rams’ fans:

Here were some of the reactions to Bryant getting drafted on Twitter:

And here’s the man himself:

I think I speak for everyone in Buckeye Nation is saying how great it is to see Christian Bryant get drafted. He’s such a great guy and it was heartbreaking to see his senior season cut short. Urban Meyer himself got choked up on the podium after the Wisconsin game (see in the video above) announcing Bryant’s injury. If Bryant doesn’t get injured his draft stock would’ve been a lot higher. He was badly missed by the Buckeyes after his injury and for good reason. Bryant is a solid defensive back who should at least contribute on special teams for the Rams this season. If he can stay healthy, he might contribute even more.

Green Bay Selects Corey Linsley in the 5th Round

With the 161st pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, the Green Bay Packers selected Ohio State center Corey Linsley. Linsley was the starting center for the Buckeyes his junior and senior season. He saw playing time at tackle and guard his freshman and sophomore seasons. His versatility of being able to play every position on the line is going to be a big plus for him. With Green Bay being thin at center, Linsley could see a lot of playing time soon. The draft was quite deep this season, which meant pretty solid players like Linsley have slid down the draft board until the third day. Take a look at your new offensive lineman, Green Bay fans:

I had no idea he grew up a Packers fan, so I’m sure he’s pretty excited about heading north to Wisconsin. I myself forgot how great he played with the Buckeyes and is one of the more underrated linemen in the draft. Linsley should have a pretty solid NFL career ahead of him.

Indianapolis Colts Select Jack Mewhort in the Second Round

With the 59th pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, the Indianapolis Colts drafted Ohio State tackle Jack Mewhort. Mewhort was the best player on the line for the Buckeyes last season. He has great size at 6-6 and 310 pounds and moves much faster than someone you would expect at this size. Many expect Mewhort to be a starter in the NFL pretty soon. Mewhort was named an All-American by ESPN in 2013 and was a starter for three of his four seasons at Ohio State. Take a look at your new lineman, Colts’ fans:

Here were some of the reactions on Twitter on Mewhort being drafted to Indianapolis:

Jack Mewhort was one of my personal favorite on the team last season, especially after I interviewed him before the Orange Bowl in January. I thought he gave a great answer when I asked him what his biggest learning moment was in 2013. Great player and an even better person. Good pickup for the Colts offensive line.

San Francisco Drafts Carlos Hyde in the Second Round

With the 57th pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, the San Francisco 49ers selected Ohio State running back Carlos Hyde. For the second year in a row, no running backs were taken in the first round of the NFL Draft. Hyde was the third running back chosen. It was pretty surprising to see him fall this far in the draft, as many considered him the top running back in the draft. Hyde’s size and physical style of play should fit nicely in the NFL. He was the straw that stirred the drink for the Ohio State offense in 2013 and should make an impact immediately for the 49ers. Here’s a look at your newest running back, San Francisco fans:

Here were some of the reactions to the pick on Twitter:

While everyone in the B1G is breathing a sigh of relief, everyone in the NFC West just got a little more nervous about the 49ers.

In Case You Missed It

Draft Results

The 2013 draft has come and gone and for the most part it went off with few surprises at least as far as the Buckeyes are concerned. Of the 9 Buckeyes who declared only three were drafted. Jonathan Hankins went in the second round to the Giants, John Simon went in the fourth to the Ravens, and Reid Fragel went in the seventh to the Bengals.

Recruiting ahoy, quarterbacks edition!

The big news of the week is that the Buckeyes offered two scholarships to Kyle Allen and shortly after offered one to Brandon Harris. Both of them are rated 4* by 247sports.com. The interesting thing about these is that Kyle Allen is not the typical dual-thread style QB we’ve come to expect from Urban Meyer. There’s no doubt Allen has the skills to be a great college quarterback but it will be interesting to see how Meyer might use him if things progress that far.

Another dual threat QB was offered a scholarship today, Zach Darlington out of Florida.

Kyle Allen highlights

Meyer weary of playoff format

Urban Meyer is somewhat apprehensive of the new playoff system believing it could lead to a snowball effect where are more and more teams are added to it. “I think it’s great. I’m not complaining, and I hope we can get involved in it. I hope Ohio State is good enough,” Meyer said. “But then they’re going to want to go to eight teams, and then, ‘Let’s go 64.’ And you can’t do that with major college football. So I just worry where it stops.” Personally, I think that’s sort of a flimsy argument. College football is never going to be like basketball, that’s just logistically not going to happen. With the current deals in place we’re locked into 4 teams for the next 12 years I believe. Let’s let this play off for a little bit before we start worrying about things that haven’t happened yet.

NCAA bans hashtags on the field

#good #annoying #  #thishasgottostop

Jim Tressel and Maurice Clarrett, together again at last

tressel-trent-richardson

 

Jim Tressel participated in a charity basketball game with Maurice Clarrett and his Charity Comeback Project. Tressel said about being asked to participate, ““It’s one of the blessings about growing up in Ohio, and I’m sure everyone has pride in where they grew up,” Tressel said. “Our good folks never forget about one another, and they invest their most valuable things, which is their time to help their communities.”

In Case You Missed It

College Football Playoff name revealed

The long awaited playoff in college football is becoming a reality as conference commissioners have decided on the name of the new playoff game. What name would they settle on? Something inspirational, something captivating, something… memorable? Nope. It will be called, “The College Football Playoff”. Voting has been opened up at the aptly named collegefootballplayoff.com website where you can vote on the logo from four equally uninspired designs. Truly democracy at its most boring.

Steve Rohlik named new OSU hockey coach

Rohlik brings 16 years of experience as a DI coach including the last three as associate head coach in Columbus. Before becoming a Buckeye he was a part of the Minnesota Duluth team for ten years including 2 tournament appearances as well as a trip to the Frozen Four.

Jonathan Hankins looks forward to the draft

Hankins, who was once a top twenty draft prospect has seen his stock go down over the last week. Now, ESPN draft analyst Mel Kiper has him as a top sixteen prospect… In the second round. Despite that, Hankins has kept his confidence up. Kiper pointed out that Hankins’ production was not as good this year as last. Says Hankins, “When they ask me about that (drop-off in production), I tell them we went undefeated as a team in 2012 and I was a big part of that,”

Reid Fragel confident in his NFL future

Coming off his private workout with the Bengals last week, Reid Fragel said it was ‘Awesome’ and that they said he improved his draft stock with the team. The former tight end has only been playing tackle for a year but despite that he is extremely confident in his skills. “This whole time, not to sound cocky, but I was confident in my ability to become an NFL tackle,” Fragel said. “That’s been a one-year project, and a credit to the coaches I’ve worked with.” Currently Fragel is ranked the 14th tackle and the 147th overall pick.

Jamarco Jones gets visit from OSU

In the never ending world of college football recruitment, the Buckeyes are making strides after one of their most important prospects. It looks like Meyer is bringing the house when it comes to Jones, going after the offensive tackle from Illinois hard. Jones just tweeted out 3 hours ago that he had spoken with Urban Meyer himself. Rivals gives Jones a 4 star rating and his position is one of the most important OSU needs to shore up going forward.

In Case You Missed It

OSU LogoIn case you missed it is Men of the Scarlet and Gray’s semi-weekly look at items that would interest the casual and hard-core Ohio State fan, be they news items, interesting blog posts or funny memes you probably saw on Reddit last week. It’s all here and it’s all for you. Have a tip that should be included in the next ICYMI? Send it our way!

HERE’S THE DEAL, I’M THE BEST THERE IS. I MEAN I WAKE UP IN THE MORNING, I PISS SPIRALS. So last week at Ohio State’s Pro Day for NFL scouts, Troy Smith was there to play a little catch with Jake Stoneburner. As always is the case anytime Troy Smith and the NFL, the Browns get mentioned. As much as I love Troy, I wonder if his days have come and gone. If it wasn’t for that freak sickness the year the Ravens drafted Flacco, things might have been different. Oh well.

But asked if he could still sling it in the NFL, Troy Smith still exudes confidence:

Troy Smith said he always has been able to “roll out of bed and throw spirals, what can I say,” but today the 2006 Heisman Trophy winner rolled out of retirement for a while and put on a passing show during Ohio State’s pro day.

He’s still got it.

I BELIEVE THE PROPER RESPONSE IS “BRING IT, DON’T SING IT”: Curtis Grant, doing a Q&A with ohisotatebuckeyes.com was asked about the status of the defense that has to replace a number of starters from the 2012 squad. He says:

“We’re coming, that’s all they need to know. The defense is coming together and we’re going to keep working hard.”

We want to believe. Now we need to see.

BEANIE UNLEASHED: Per the man himself, Chris “Beanie” Wells has been released by the Arizona Cardinals:

For all the NFL scouts out there in our readership, there’s a reason why we dubbed Beanie’s Stiff-arm the “Stiff Arm of Justice“. Do the right thing.

ALL-EVERYTHINGS: Deshaun Thomas was named to the Sporting News’ Second Team All-American squad. Deshaun Thomas and Aaron Craft were named to the All-Big Ten Team by the media (Craft was bumped for Hardaway Jr. by the coaches which: LOL). Victor Oladipo edged out Aaron Craft as the Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year. I guess I can’t argue with that, but I’d still rather have Aaron Craft over Oladipo or Burke (the Big Ten Player of the Year).

My eyes have seen the Glory of the Craft.

ALSO: Vote in the Big Ten Networks Dunks of the Year Bracket.

Breaking Down the 2013 Ohio State Draft Class

Ohio State has a long-standing tradition of producing quality NFL talent. Since 2000, the program has produced more NFL draft picks than any other school, as 83 Buckeyes have had their names called by NFL teams since the new millennium. Though the program is not graduating any players who will be drafted in the top ten, a number of Buckeyes might be receiving phone calls before the name of Mr. Irrelevant is called on Saturday, April 27.

Below is a rundown of the ten Buckeyes who have a legitimate shot to be drafted or signed as a free agent soon after. Each player saw significant playing time at Ohio State, and has a chance to make an impact, to varying degrees, in the NFL.

Jonathan Hankins: Leading this year’s Ohio State draft class is Jonathan Hankins. The defensive tackle decided in December that the grass was greener in the NFL and bypassed his senior year for a chance to play in the pros. According to Dane Bugler of CBSSports.com, Hankins is a lineman with a “rare combination” of size, foot speed and strength. Hankins had a stellar junior year. In his second year as a starter, Hankins racked up 55 tackles, five tackles for loss and a sack. Big Hank was versatile at the position, demonstrating that he can fit into either a 3-4 or a 4-3 scheme in the NFL. He defends the run well and possesses good awareness and instincts. He will most likely be picked towards the end of the first round or at the start of the second. Hankins is not the best defensive tackle in this year’s draft class, but will make a nice prize for the team that chooses him.

John Simon: Few fans of the Scarlet and Gray can forget John Simon. The dedicated Buckeye who plays with passion and drive, Simon made a reputation for himself in Columbus. He was a consistent playmaker at OSU who could be relied upon for energy and big plays. Despite all of Simon’s positive qualities, he faces a challenge in the NFL. Too small to play defensive line and too big to play linebacker, he has already been deemed a “tweener.” In spite of this, Simon is an intriguing prospect for NFL scouts. Simply looking at his stats during his senior season could give a quarterback a case of the jitters. Simon totaled 44 tackles, nine sacks (first in the Big Ten), and 14.5 tackles for loss. He garnered the Nagurski-Woodson Defensive Player of the Year and the Smith-Brown Defensive Lineman of the Year awards for his efforts. The intense lineman also earned All-Big Ten and 3rd team AP All-American honors. Over the course of his career, he started 37 consecutive games over three seasons before suffering a minor knee injury in the week prior to the Michigan game.
Known for his non-stop motor, Simon is a great tackler with “excellent recognition skills.” A relentless player, Simon is dedicated on and off the football field. Head coach Urban Meyer compared the talented athlete’s work ethic to that of the coach’s well-known quarterback at Florida– Tim Tebow. But as stated before, Simon is too small to play defensive line as he did as a Buckeye. This will hurt his draft stock. He will get used to sitting back in coverage and running one-on-one with backs and tight ends. This will be a major adjustment. In Pro Bowl practice, he looked like a “fish out of water,” according to Bugler. Simon doesn’t yet have the footwork needed to succeed at linebacker. He will need coaching to become a mainstay at the position. Regardless, Simon’s remarkable work ethic and motor will likely earn him a spot on an NFL roster. He is currently projected as a third rounder.

Etienne Sabino- Many thought when Sabino chose the Bucks that he would join a long line of great Ohio State linebackers. But the five star recruit out of high school never seemed to put it all together in college. Not to say that Sabino didn’t have a solid career, but he didn’t become the all-star he was projected to be. He also missed much of his senior year with a broken fibula. Sabino did manage 45 tackles, two sacks, four tackles for loss, a forced fumble and two interceptions in eight games, though. There are many NFL greats who didn’t shine in college. Sabino has the raw athletic ability to succeed in the pros. The linebacker “flies all over the field” and blitzes well downhill. Though he has to improve at processing information and taking good angles, Sabino will likely be taken around the fifth round.

Reid Fragel- The most memorable characteristic of Reid Fragel is his height. Standing at 6’8 and 310 pounds, Fragel is an imposing figure. A converted tight end, the Grosse Point Farms (MI) native played offensive tackle during Meyer’s inaugural season at Ohio State. Fragel recognized that tight ends don’t usually play a large role in Meyer’s offensive scheme, so Fragel made the transition to offensive tackle. He added 20 pounds of muscle in the offseason, bulking up while keeping his quickness. The switch was ultimately successful, as he provided a solid senior presence on the offensive line. Fragel performed well this season, never relenting his starting role. But going into the NFL, he is at a bit of a disadvantage. As one would imagine, his technique at the offensive tackle position is not refined to a professional level. But with time, Fragel can develop into a solid offensive tackle. One potential worry is an undisclosed injury that held him out of the Senior Bowl, but Fragel probabaly will still go off the board around the fifth or sixth round.

Zach Boren- Another player who flip-flopped positions his senior year, Zach Boren established himself as a leader at linebacker as the season wore on. Originally a fullback, Boren transitioned to linebacker early in the 2012 campaign, as Meyer’s offense doesn’t typically call for a bruising back. Since Boren played linebacker in high school, he soon readjusted to the position. He became a mainstay of OSU’s talented defense, growing into a fearless inside linebacker. Boren showed good awareness and agility at the position, posting impressive stats. He racked up 50 tackles, a sack and five tackles for loss en route to being named the team’s Defensive Player of the Year. Due to his late switch, it is unlikely that Boren will be drafted until the later rounds. At the very least, Boren should get a chance with an NFL squad as a special teams player, thanks to his tenacity and drive.

Jake Stoneburner- Though he did flirt with other positions, Jake Stoneburner was mostly used as a tight end at OSU. A tall, athletic player talented at catching and blocking, Stoneburner saw time as a tight end, H-back, fullback and wide receiver at Ohio State. While he didn’t rack up monumental stats his senior year (16 catches for 269 yards and four touchdowns), Stoneburner displayed a number of good qualities, such as “smooth” footwork, “tenacity” as a blocker and “excellent” body control. He had a good enough career as a Buckeye to at least earn a chance with an NFL team as a late-round flier. But repeated holding penalties and limited stats will hinder his draft stock. Right now, he is projected as a sixth to seventh round pick.

Travis Howard- A cornerback with some definite talent but some significant shortcomings, Travis Howard is a player who has the talent to play in the NFL but needs some work. Howard enjoyed a solid career with the Bucks, especially during his senior season. He recorded 40 tackles, six passes defensed and a Big Ten best four interceptions, earning him Honorable All-Big Ten honors. As he displayed in 2012, Howard has good ball skills and foot quickness. Though a bit lean for a cornerback at 6’1 and 198 pounds, Howard makes good reads and is aggressive in run support. But the playmaker has to work on his timing, positioning and discipline. He has the potential to be a contributor in the NFL, but must fix these areas of his game. Howard looks to be a third day pick, as he will likely go in the seventh round.

Nathan Williams- A defensive line/linebacker hybrid, Nathan Williams is, in a way, a lesser-known version John Simon. Williams is a physical tackler who plays with a lot of energy just like Simon, though Williams struggled with a knee injury during his time at Ohio State. He missed the 2011 season because of his knee, but worked his way back into the lineup in 2012. By the end of his senior campaign, Williams looked fully healthy. He certainly played like it, notching 40 tackles, two sacks and four tackles for loss on the year. Scouts may doubt about his ability to stay healthy, but Williams could improve his draft stock with a good Combine. As of now, he is projected to either be picked in the seventh round or go undrafted.

Orhian Johnson- A versatile safety who had to fight for playing time at Ohio State, Orhian Johnson is an intriguing prospect. During his career as a Buckeye, he not only played both safety positions, but also spent time at outside linebacker and cornerback. Though he often had to battle for playing time with higher-ranked recruits, Johnson always found a way onto the field. His size and athleticism certainly had something to do with that. With the talent he displayed at OSU, he could be a solid special teams player in the pros. But Johnson has some obstacles to overcome if he expects to play on defense. He needs to add some muscle, eliminate the “dumb” penalties he has been known to incur and also take better angles in run support. Still, Johnson should earn a spot on an NFL roster, whether he is taken very late in the draft or signed as an undrafted free agent.
Garrett Goebel- As a defensive tackle for the Bucks, Garrett Goebel posted impressive stats. During his senior season, he compiled 86 tackles, two sacks, 12 tackles for loss, two passes defensed and one fumble recovery. Goebel flew under the radar, though, as he was not well-known as a Buckeye. He has not been noticed too much by scouts, either. Though he started every game of his junior and senior seasons, Goebel will most likely not be drafted. He still has a shot to be picked up by a team via free agency, though. Goebel will have to establish himself on special teams or on the practice squad before he gets a major opportunity with an NFL team.

Information from CBSSports.com, OhioStateBuckeyes.com and NFL.com was used in this article. Phrases in quotation marks are words used by Dan Bugler of CBSSports.com.

In Case You Missed It

OSU LogoIn case you missed it is Men of the Scarlet and Gray’s semi-weekly look at items that would interest the casual and hard-core Ohio State fan, be they news items, interesting blog posts or funny memes you probably saw on Reddit last week. It’s all here and it’s all for you. Have a tip that should be included in the next ICYMI? Send it our way!

RECRUITS, RECRUITS EVERYWHERE AND NOT A DROP TO DRINK. As you all are acutely aware, yesterday was National Signing Day, the day that I like to call my birthday-eve-eve, but it is a bonanza for those people who love to follow football recruiting, including our own Slyvester-Yon Rambo. SYR put in 10+ hours of work here around the site, for which we are eternally grateful. Among his work included following Mark Pantoni as he updated his twitter feed as Letters of Intent poured in. He posted new player profiles of Vonn Bell and James Clark, to HUGE gets from Urban and a repost of Ezekiel Elliot’s profile as he reconfirmed his commitment to Ohio State. Again, a HUGE thanks to SYR for his hard work.

On top of that, MotSaG’s multimedia editor, Kade, put together a video of a handful of the more exciting recruits that is basically 6 minutes of drool worthy talent, all coming to Ohio State. James Clark looks like his SPD is 99.

There were a lot of heroes on the OSU coaching staff on the recruiting trail, but Tom Herman’s work landing three great players from Texas was most definitely a coup for the Buckeyes, who usually don’t look to Texas very much for players. Kyle over at Eleven Warriors has a great write up of Herman’s work ethic and determination:

So what’s been Herman’s magic elixir in brining talented Texans more than 1,000 miles away from home to a less than desirable climate? Those three words: persistence, reputation and luck.

Man, I hope Urban can hold on to his assistants for as long as possible.

RECRUITING: WHO WORE IT BETTER, HOKE OR MEYER? Adam Jacobi over at the Bleacher Report compared the two recruiting classes from Michigan and Ohio State, looking to see who got better talent and who filled more talent holes. Spoiler alert: Meyer is better.

What makes this class truly great is what purpose it serves for Ohio State’s needs, however, and there it grades out at a near-perfect 4.22: six “A+”s, three “A”s. Every single signing makes sense in terms of pure talent and what Ohio State needs to accomplish in the coming years.

Ok, that’s not a spoiler, you already knew that.

“ENJOY THE BIG TEN!” That would be someone in Vanderbilt’s War Room after Von Bell announced his intention to sign with Ohio State.

Bell had Vanderbilt on his list, but it was not among the favorites. Franklin knew that, so he tailored his message to Bell when he met with him.

“Let me tell you,” Franklin said. “Ohio State would be a heck of a choice.”

A heck of a choice, indeed.

A GENTLEMAN AND A SCHOLAR. SCORER. SCHOLAR. WHATEVER. Congratulations to Deshaun Thomas for earning the Ohio State Student-Athlete Academic Achievement Award (awarded to student athletes who maintain a 3.0 GPA and while participating on a varisty team)

ON TO THE NEXT LEVEL. Seven Buckeyes have been invited to the NFL combine, held later this month in Indianapolis. Biggest surprise is that Travis Howard was not invited. WFNY has the list.

Get your football fix Open Thread

We’re planning on taking the kids to their first Spring Game today, so I doubt I’ll be able to watch much of it before they get bored, but the DVR will be working overtime so I can catch it on my own. Are you planning on going?

We’ll also be watching the NFL draft with interest when we get back!

Update: Spring game (the half I’ve seen already was great) but I just came in from some yardwork and saw that Beanie fell all the way down to the 31st pick? That was unexpected, to say the least.