No team is perfect, and despite the positive momentum Ohio State is riding into the season, a number of issues should be of concern to Urban Meyer.
The Buckeyes, who rank No. 2 in the AP and coaches polls, don’t have a lot to worry about offensively, but a young defense will need to grow up quickly if Ohio State is to remain a title contender.
Some of those issues can be handled by good coaching, but some will persist regardless of the coaches’ preventive measures.
Here are three of Meyer’s biggest concerns heading into the season.
Lack of Depth at Linebacker and Offensive Line
Ohio State’s already thin linebacker depth took a hit this offseason when sophomores David Perkins and Luke Roberts transferred.
Additionally, starting middle linebacker Curtis Grant suffered a concussion early in fall camp, forcing walk-on sophomore Joe Burger into a starting role. Grant isn’t expected to miss much time, but his injury shows how thin the Buckeyes are at linebacker, and Burger’s insertion into the starting lineup shows Ohio State’s touted freshmen aren’t ready to step in just yet.
The Buckeyes’ depth along the offensive line is an even bigger concern.
According to Doug Lesmerises of The Plain Dealer, the five offensive line starters saw 98.8 percent of the action last year, meaning Ohio State’s backups got in on 10 of an available 837 plays.
With left tackle Jack Mewhort, left guard Andrew Norwell, center Corey Linsley and right guard Marcus Hall returning, the Buckeyes have a strong group of starters but a very inexperienced group backing them up.
One play could force that inexperience onto the field.
Continue Reading: Ohio State Football: 3 Biggest Concerns for the Buckeyes in 2013