The Late Glenn Frey, In An Ode To The 2015 Ohio State Recruiting Class

The anticipation for Ohio State spring football is always tremendous. Tickets for the April 16th spring game are already on sale, with the game two months away. Ohio State just signed an impressive recruiting class for 2016, with seven of the players already enrolled, planning to participate in spring drills.

How does this involve the late, great Glenn Frey, former member of The Eagles? In February 2015, Ohio State signed a talented group of players, with the vast majority redshirting throughout the 2015 season. When I write “vast majority”, I am citing the fact that 21 out of 25 players did not see game action. That amounts to 84% of the 2015 recruiting class.

Glenn Frey wrote the song “New Kid In Town”, a familiar song to Eagles fans. Below are some of the lyrics as I describe some of the players Ohio State fans will have an opportunity to learn about as the April 16th spring game approaches…

“There’s talk on the street; it sounds so familiar
Great expectations, everybody’s watching you
People you meet, they all seem to know you
Even your old friends treat you like you’re something new

Johnny come lately, the new kid in town
Everybody loves you, so don’t let them down”

At quarterback, Joe Burrow has already been named the backup quarterback heading into spring drills. If you think backup quarterback is unimportant, I suggest you go look up the following football season – Ohio State, 2014.

At running back, Mike Weber will throw his hat into the ring to replace early NFL Draft entry Ezekiel Elliott. Weber is one of the members of the 2015 recruiting class who possibly could have played in 2015, if not for an injury that required surgery during fall camp.

At wide receiver, converted quarterback Torrance Gibson, Alex Stump, and K.J. Hill will all battle to impress the coaching staff. Considering Michael Thomas and Jalin Marshall have also declared for the NFL Draft, here is a position group that is open for players to contribute.

Tight end? Nick Vannett has moved on, with Marcus Baugh the only returning tight end with any game experience. A.J. Alexander and Rashod Berry will want to seize the moment, as Ohio State signed three tight ends in Kierre Hawkins, Jake Hausmann, and Luke Farrell who will arrive on campus this summer.

Offensive Line? This was an impressive haul last February, with Grant Schmidt, Kevin Feder, Matthew Burrell, and Branden Bowen…who all redshirted. There are three spots open on the line.

Two open spots along the defensive line should loom large this spring. Jashon Cornell, Dre’Mont Jones, Joshua Alabi, Robert Landers, and Davon Hamilton may all be in the mix here.

Two open linebacker spots, with plenty of opportunities for playing time. Nick Conner impressed in the 2015 spring game, but redshirted due to injury. Justin Hilliard was arguably one of the most recruited players in the class, and redshirted from injury also.

The secondary? Talk about an opportunity, with three open spots, including both safety positions. Joshua Norwood and Damon Arnette can throw their hats into contention.

Don’t forget Ohio State signed a long-snapper last winter. Liam McCullough may be the easiest of the 2015 redshirt freshmen to target for a starting position, as Bryce Haynes has exhausted his eligibility.

Twenty-one out of twenty-five. All eager, able, and hungry to show the Ohio State coaching staff, and fans, what they can do. These players would be wise to remember the words of Glenn Frey…

“There’s talk on the street, it’s there to
Remind you, that it doesn’t really matter
which side you’re on.
You’re walking away and they’re talking behind you
They will never forget you ’til somebody new comes along…”

Stanley Jackson Offers Insights On Playing QB For Ohio State (Part Two)

The battle between J.T. Barrett and Cardale Jones for the starting quarterback position will be the most scrutinized area by both the fans and the media as the Buckeyes prepare for the 2015 college football season. Everyone has an opinion on how it will turn out, but I thought I would go straight to a source who is as well-versed on the subject as anyone.

Stanley Jackson (@Jacksonville8) is a former Ohio State quarterback who knows a thing or two about what it is like to go through a quarterback battle, having experienced it himself with former teammate Joe Germaine during the 1996 and 1997 seasons. Mr. Jackson is an analyst for the Big Ten Network and WTVN 610 radio in Columbus, Ohio. Married with four children, living in Marion, Ohio, Mr. Jackson was kind enough to participate in a telephone interview after a work day at Buckeye State Bank, where he is owner and vice-president. The first part of the interview dealt more upon Mr. Jackson’s career, where part two focuses more upon the impending quarterback battle between J.T. Barrett and Cardale Jones.


CM: What if J.T. Barrett winds up as the starter? Just from my perspective, could you see maybe Cardale Jones getting the second half?

SJ: Coach Meyer has a history of platooning guys, with Chris Leak and Tim Tebow. Here’s the problem with that. Both of these guys have the talent to possibly win the Heisman Trophy or be an All-American. They are both special. I don’t like platooning. I think you have to make a choice. I think back to when Joe and I were platooning, and neither one of us were picked as All-Big Ten; the year Joe was the starter, Joe was All-Big Ten. I would love for them to say that this is an open competition; whoever comes out on top is going to be the guy. As good a run that Cardale Jones had, Cardale became the starter because J.T. Barrett was injured – I don’t think a player should ever lose a job due to injury. I like both kids. I think they are both very worthy, they both deserve it, I think it is going to be a hard fought battle. I would hate to see a platoon system. I hope Coach Meyer picks a guy, and goes with him, no matter who it is. You can sometimes run two different offenses, and that can become confusing for the group as well.

CM: How surprised were you with the news that Braxton Miller was changing positions? Was that something you anticipated?

SJ: I am not very surprised. It was a tough decision for Braxton. My gut tells me that the arm has not healed enough for Braxton to be able to make all the throws. Very rarely do you see a kid make a decision like that when they can still play quarterback and switch; they have a love for the position and they want to prove everyone wrong. You look at Denard Robinson, who has emerged as a good running back in the NFL; everyone knew just from his pure stature that he was not going to play quarterback in the NFL. It took him losing his shoulder at Michigan before he made the position switch. I grieve with Braxton that he had to make the choice, and Coach Meyer is telling everyone to pump the brakes, but I think it is more about Braxton’s health than about a possible NFL career. If Braxton goes out and runs a 4.3, benches well, runs a tremendous shuttle time, the NFL will look at him for sure, because they want athletes. I think Braxton would like to go out with a bang, but I think it is difficult to win the Heisman as a wide receiver or an H-Back. The last wide receiver to win the Heisman also returned kicks (Notre Dame’s Tim Brown in 1987). Also, all of the talent at Ohio State is working against him – are you stealing touches from Mike Thomas, Jalin Marshall, Curtis Samuel, Dontre Wilson, Ezekiel Elliott? All of those players are special football players. It is a tough thing.

CM: You mentioned earlier about your career and how you had a period of growing up, needing to mature, and things you may have done differently. Ohio State recruited two quarterbacks in Joe Burrow and Torrance Gibson. What kind of advice would you give to those players as a former Ohio State quarterback as the season gets closer, as someone who has been down the path they are currently following?

SJ: That’s easy, whether you are redshirting or not. That’s another very interesting battle, because Braxton has moved to the H-Back, so you have to find the third quarterback. Two five-star quarterbacks coming in, both had outstanding high school careers. One of those guys is going to compete to be the third guy. Not that it means whoever wins the battle this year is going to keep that pole position, but that could put you in the catbird seat for when J.T. Barrett graduates. That’s an important race there. Either way, redshirting or not, what I would tell both of those guys is don’t waste a year. It is very easy to waste this year and lay back, not watch film like you’re a starter, not throw balls like you’re a starter, not be attentive at practice like you’re a starter. Then if they take you and have you run the scout team it can make it even easier for you to check out. Don’t check out on these minutes; this is your foundation year. You are building a foundation for the rest of your career at Ohio State. The reality for me is I was in a situation where I was the third string guy behind Bob Hoying and Bret Powers. Tom Hoying, Mark Zban, and I all competed for the third string spot all fall camp, and it was exciting then, but once the battle was over, it was not exciting anymore. Tom and Mark were running scout team, and they were getting more reps than I was because I was the third string guy, and I was watching most of the time, and it lost its luster for me. There were a lot of days when I wasted time, I checked out, and I wasn’t learning or getting better. I wasn’t throwing balls, and I didn’t stay extra after practice; a lot of times, I was probably the first guy off the practice field, so I wasted the year. Don’t waste the year. Every moment is vital. Get better every play.

CM: Last question, and this is more of a personal request. You work for The Big Ten Network as an analyst – I love when they show these Ohio State classic games, but they never show Ohio State defeating Alabama in The Sugar Bowl, or Ohio State defeating Oregon for the national championship. Anyone you can talk to at BTN about playing those games?

SJ: Don’t worry; they are chomping at the bit to play those games. Those are probably the two most watched games in the history of Ohio State football, maybe even The B1G with the beginning of the playoff run. I am not 100% sure, but as we were working those games, we could not show all of the clips. Those games were shown on ESPN and Fox Sports. I am not sure what the deal is with ESPN and how long they get that stuff, but eventually the license will run the course and BTN will be able to show those games. BTN will love to show those games. Those games are still being shown on ESPN. I will certainly go on BTN and ask that question for you.

CM: Do you know if you will be an analyst for BTN at any Ohio State games, like maybe the Hawaii game on September 12th?

SJ: I think they are trying to keep me away from doing any Ohio State games; I have about five games this season. This is my second year providing color commentary. Glen Mason is also a Buckeye, and he is the main guy. He will get to do most of the Ohio State games on BTN.

CM: Your BTN duties begin soon?

SJ: BTN Live, then Big Ten Football And Beyond on Wednesdays, and I will be scattered across the network on Fridays, Saturdays, and Mondays.

CM: You will also be working with Coach Bruce, right?

SJ: That is fair to say. We have a podcast, and we are presently in negotations with WTVN 610.

CM: It is so great to hear you speak about all of the positive things that have come about after your career at Ohio State.

SJ: Thank you. Please be sure to send me a copy of the article when it comes out.

CM: Will do. Thank you, sir.

I cannot thank Mr. Jackson enough for his time and patience with participating in this interview. Please be sure to follow him on Twitter @Jacksonville8, as well as Mr. Jackson’s media opportunities via The Big Ten Network and WTVN 610 AM in Columbus, Ohio.

2015 Ohio State Spring Football Questions: Will It Be “Three’s Company” Or “Three’s A Crowd” At QB?

Beginning March 10th, Ohio State will have fifteen spring football practices before the conclusion of spring practice on April 18th in Ohio Stadium. Over the next few weeks, I will rank the top ten questions facing Ohio State Head Coach Urban Meyer and his coaching staff as the Buckeyes retake the football field after concluding the 2014 season as the national champions.

These articles will be submitted from areas of lowest concern to highest concern. While Ohio State returns the overwhelming majority of its 2014 team, and welcomes in a highly-touted recruiting class, it will be important for Coach Meyer to convey to his team that complacency within the player ranks could derail any hopes of the Buckeyes repeating as national champions in 2015.

9. Quarterback

Key Players/Contributors Lost: None

Key Players/Contributors Returning For 2015: All. Braxton Miller (Redshirt Senior), Cardale Jones (Redshirt Junior), J.T. Barrett (Redshirt Sophomore), Stephen Collier (Redshirt Freshman).

Let’s review from August 2014 to now, shall we?

All was seemingly lost for Ohio State at that point. While Ohio State fans hoped for the best, many prepared themselves for the possibility that Ohio State would not be able to survive the loss of Miller at quarterback and still qualify for the inaugural College Football Playoff.

Then J.T. Barrett emerged. After a disastrous game at home versus Virginia Tech, Barrett regrouped and emerged as a legitimate Heisman Trophy candidate in his own right, setting numerous records before being lost for the season in THE GAME versus That Team Up North.

I seem to recall some joker posting something about Cardale Jones, even before the diagnosis had been revealed about the extent of Barrett’s injury…

Heading into The B1G Championship game versus Wisconsin, Fox Sports’ Gus Johnson summed up what all Buckeye fans were feeling about the newly-designated starter at quarterback…

Needless to say, I’m not going to bore you with how it all turned out. Well, maybe I will give you this little clip that I have personally decided is among my favorite…

After the national championship, many people, including myself, expected Cardale Jones to declare for the 2015 NFL Draft. With no guarantees to start for Ohio State in 2015, and the possibility of a lucrative financial future, Jones stepped up to the podium in the gymnasium at Cleveland Glenville and made the following announcement…

And in the bitter cold on January 24th, 2015, while in Ohio Stadium to honor the 2014 national champions, could there have been a better moment to summarize how blessed Ohio State fans were in 2014, and possibly will be, in 2015?

Getting down to business, here is how the quarterback position will probably be handled this spring ~

Braxton Miller, while coming along in his recovery, will be handled with caution by both Ohio State’s medical staff, as well as coaching staff, this spring. Ohio State Head Coach Urban Meyer stated the same recently in an interview with 97.1 The Fan’s Anthony Rothman…

J.T. Barrett will also be somewhat limited in his spring football participation. While Barrett is no longer on crutches, as he was during the national championship celebration on January 24th, will need to be cautious as well this spring…

With those concerns being publicly stated, this results in Cardale Jones having the opportunity to run with the first team offense for fifteen practices. With new quarterbacks coach/co-offensive coordinator Tim Beck on staff this spring, Jones will have the best chance to cement his role as the starter before Barrett or Miller are fully healthy.

Where does this place Stephen Collier, last year’s scout team quarterback?

Look for Collier to be provided ample opportunities to play this spring, with both Miller and Barrett limited. It would not be a shock to see Collier play substantially in the spring game on April 18th. With newly-signed Torrance Gibson and Joe Burrow arriving this summer, Collier will want to take advantage of any and every chance to impress the coaching staff this spring.

There are always exceptions to every rule. The old football axiom that “if you have two quarterbacks, that means you don’t have one” was shattered by the performances over the last few seasons by Braxton Miller, J.T. Barrett, and Cardale Jones. Will the three quarterbacks prove to Ohio State fans that the quarterback situation at Ohio State is more “Three’s Company” than “Three’s A Crowd”? That question will possibly not be answered until fall camp, so it may be raised as a priority in my mind by that time. Even so, I am guessing Coach Meyer, Coach Beck, and all of the coaches and players at Ohio State will be reassured knowing they have three dynamite players at the most crucial position on the football field.

Buckeyes Land Big Time Recruit

I have to start out with I am sorry. I have not put up a commitment post for the last couple of recruits. I have seriously slacked in my coverage of recruiting because of a new job. Thankfully this newest commit was kind enough to commit on my day off so I have no excuse to not put up a post. So let’s make it a great one. Today’s commitment is one that seemed inevitable and then impossible and finally back to inevitable. So while today’s announcement was a foregone conclusion to many recruiting experts it is great none the less. So let’s break down this future Buckeye and see why it is such a big pick up for OSU.

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Torrance Gibson committed to become a Buckeye at his school today after his Army All-American Ceremony.

Torrance Gibson is a 6’4″ 200 lbs 5 star QB/Athlete from Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Torrance is a Dual-Threat Quaterback with tremendous upside. His athletic ability alone makes some question if he would be a better WR than a QB. He has the speed to outrun the defenses and the agility to make people miss. His throwing ability is underappreciated IMHO. He has a big arm that allows for deep passes. Like many DT QBs though his short to intermediate throws need work. Why throw for 5-10 yards when as a QB you can pull it down and run for 15-20? That is the kind of thing that makes people doubt running QBs. Make no mistake though Torrance Gibson is going to OSU as a QB and will get every chance he can to earn his spot as the starting QB. I also am not a moron Coach Meyer and his staff does a great job taking guys and putting in the best spots to succeed. They turned a Fullback into a Linebacker. A Tight end into a OLman. Sam Hubbard may play every position before he leaves OSU. Torrance will compete to be a QB but has the athletic ability to succeed no matter where he plays and that is why landing him is so important.

247sports ranks Torrance a 4 star the 62nd best player in the country and the 6th best athlete in the country. Rivals ranks Torrance a 4 star and the 103rd best player in the country. Scout ranks him a 4 star and the 45th best player in the country. ESPN ranks Torrance a 5 star and the 13th best player in the country and the 2nd best athlete in the country.

Quarterback Recruiting Class of 2015

osuHelmetFor Ohio State recruit nits, we know how much of a slow start this class has gotten off to.  I am sure people have read over and over again the same comments about how this class is going to stink, blah, blah, blah, etc.  Well, we have been spoiled with Top 3-5 recruiting class since Urban has been the head honcho.  I am here to tell you, that you need not worry.  This class, I assure you, will be top 5, and if not top 5, then top 7.  Is top seven good enough for you fans?  It should be.  The reason for the slow start you ask?  Ohio State is going national.  I understand that Tressel’s way of doing things was getting Ohio’s best, then getting the nation’s best.  With Urban, it’s getting Ohio’s best, along with getting the nations best.  With going after these players, a lot of them will not announce until after official visits.  So, that is why the recruiting class has been off to a slow start.  In this next series, I will be diving into each position, as to what each position, COULD, end up like on National Signing Day.  Now, we will look at the Quarterback recruiting for the 2015 class and which quarterback(s) I think will end up in this class.

Joe Burrow- Athens, Ohio-(Commit)

The newest Ohio State commit, committed to Ohio State a little over a week ago.  The 6-4, 205 pound Dual-Threat quarterback was a little bit under the radar until recently.  He was offered by the staff and committed shortly after.  He had a monstrous junior season throwing for 47 TD’s plus rushing for 9 more.  He has all of the size and strength to be a good quarterback at the next level.  Some of the scouts are already comparing him to Urban Meyer’s old quarterback at Utah, Alex Smith.  We all know how well Alex Smith flourished in Urban’s offense.  I think Burrow fits very well in this type of offense.  A big, strong, mobile, quarterback who moves well.  Burrows has all the size you could ask for in a quarterback and I think his stock will rise after camps and the season.   He is a good get for Urban Meyer and this offense.

Torrance Gibson- Fort Lauderdale, Florida 


I’m sure by now, every person that follows Ohio State recruiting, has heard the name Torrance Gibson.  He is one of the more sought after recruits in the whole nation.  Urban Meyer started on Gibson early and he understands the type of numbers he will put up under Urban’s system.  Without even visiting, Ohio State has remained in Torrance Gibson’s top 5.  At one point they were number three, but have now slipped all the way to number four or five.  He still has not visited and without a visit there is certainly no way he will come to Ohio State.  The trips to Ohio State have been tried, but for whatever reason just could not make it up there.  But, he has been able to go to Auburn a couple of times and Tennessee.  It just questions how much he really likes Ohio State.  I do not see Torrance Gibson being in this class unless he visits Ohio State.  Even if he does, it will be tough to bring him here.

Travis Waller- Anaheim, California


Day by Day, this story is getting very interesting.  Waller has a lot of interest in many schools such as Oregon, Alabama, Notre Dame, and Ohio State. Travis has had a crazy past couple of weeks.  Notre Dame offered him yesterday and a lot of Crystal Balls have been piling in for him and Notre Dame.  Waller told me that he did not understand why so many people switched the Crystal Balls to Notre Dame because, “I never said anything to them except what I think of the school.”   In addition to the Notre Dame offer and many people now thinking they are the favorite, Travis had a little bit of a misunderstanding a couple of weeks ago with Oregon, as he felt like a backup to Oregon and there were reports that they were no longer in the running.  So, instead of listening to all of the different rumors,  I decided to ask Travis himself and he told me, “I felt slighted by Oregon, almost like a backup plan, but I talked to them and they are right back up on the list.”   So his recruitment has been a little hectic lately.  Ohio State has not offered the dual-threat quarterback, but he tells me they stay in contact.  Waller is still planned to visit Ohio State at the end of June.  If Waller does make that visit AND they offer, I think it’s game on.  I think they have just as good a shot as anybody in this race, but Oregon and Alabama will be tough to beat.  If they don’t get Waller, I do not think that they will take another quarterback in this class.



MotSaG Chat with Torrance Gibson

5star_recruit_iconosuHelmetUrban Meyer has an Offensive System that much we all know. Every now and again there comes a high school recruit who fits it perfectly. The 2015 class has a couple of QBs who fit the mold of what Coach Meyer wants and one of them stands out above the rest. Torrance Gibson is a 6’4″ 200 lbs 5 star QB from Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Torrance is a Dual Threat QB who runs a spread offense in HS very similar to what Coach Meyer runs at Ohio State. If you watch his film (see below) you can almost see the similarities to Braxton Miller. He is a great runner and a better passer at this point in his career than most DT QBs. If he ends up at OSU you can be sure they system wont change and the offense will prosper.

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247sports ranks him a 5 star and the 16th best recruit in the country.
Rivals ranks him a 4 star and the 36th best recruit in the country.
Scout ranks him a 4 star and the 3rd best QB in the country.
ESPN ranks him a 4 star and the 11th best recruit in the country.

SYR- If you could please tell us about your home life… Parents, brothers and/or sisters, where you were born, Have you always lived in in the same place?

Torrance- My home is good it’s just me & my mom. I have brothers but they don’t live with me. I didn’t always live here.

SYR- Can you give us your current stats such as height, weight, 40 yard time, bench press, etc?

Torrance- I am 6″4 I weigh 200lbs. My 40 time is a 4.37 & I branch press 235

SYR- Tell us a little bit about your HS FB team such as record and offensive style?

Torrance- My team football record was 14-1 & we ran the spread offense.

SYR- What are your goals for your Senior season?

Torrance- My goals are to win states again, & to throw for 2500 yards & rush for 1,000.

SYR- What college football team did you grow up being a fan of and why?

Torrance- I grew up watching everyone. I never had a favorite college football team, I just love watching football.

SYR- You have offers from all over the country which one was the most exciting for you to get and why?

Torrance- Every offer is exciting because I never thought I would have this many offers before.

SYR- Who would you say is your personal hero and why?

Torrance- My mom because she does so much for me & she is a single parent.

SYR- If you were going to die tomorrow what would your final meal be?

Torrance- Wings & nachos

SYR- Who do you think you compare to most in the NFL or College right now?

Torrance- Well most people say I have speed like Michael Vick & RG3 & I have the build size like Cam Newton.

SYR- Who is your favorite College player of all time? And favorite NFL player of all time if different from College?

Torrance- My favorite college player would be Cam Newton & my favorite NFL player is Michael Vick.

SYR- Do you have a top 5 or 10 schools if yes who?

Torrance- I don’t have a top school I just have a list.

SYR- Do you currently have a leader or leaders yet?

Torrance- No everyone is the same right now.

SYR- Do you know when you would like to announce your commitment, if yes, when?

Torrance- After my final season of high school.

SYR- Have you visited Ohio State yet, if yes how did it go? and do you have any plans to visit them in the future? If yes, When?

Torrance- No I haven’t visit ohio state yet. But I’m planning a trip up there this summer.

SYR- What is your impression of Ohio State and Urban Meyer?

Torrance- Well Ohio state is a great program no doubt about that. But what Urban Meyer did with Ohio state is incredible. There is no doubt in my mind he will he will be in the coaches Hall of fame.

SYR- Do you hear from Ohio State often?

Torrance- Yeah I talk to the coaches every other day & we just talk about football, school, & my family.

SYR- Who is your lead recruiter for the Buckeyes?

Torrance- Mark Pantoni & Tom Herman

SYR- Has Raekwon McMillan or any other Buckeye recruits been in your ear about joining them at OSU?

Torrance- Yeah I wrote Raekwon on Twitter the other day & congratulated him on his commit.

SYR- What would you like Buckeye Nation to know about you that they most likely don’t already know?

Torrance- I want them to know that I am a humble football player/ student athlete & I’m willing to do anything to make myself great & the people around me better & that I love my girlfriend lol (:

You can follow Torrance by clicking @quick_tg6.