With Urban Meyer at the helm, Ohio State has secured the Big Ten’s top recruiting class for three consecutive years. Waves of talent have flooded Columbus, Ohio, and after signing back-to-back classes that ranked No. 2 nationally, the Buckeyes are loaded for another title run in 2014.
Surprisingly, though, that young talent hasn’t made a strong impact on the field. Despite Meyer’s eagerness to get his young players in the fold, Ohio State has kept a lot of its freshmen on the sideline.
After seeing his team finish the 2013 campaign with consecutive postseason losses, Meyer admitted during a press conference in February that the Buckeyes should have played more of their freshmen. He also vowed to correct that mistake moving forward.
That bodes well for a number of true and redshirt freshman.
Opportunity abounds at Ohio State as the Buckeyes are replacing 10 new starters and a few key reserves this spring. Saturday’s spring game will serve as a proving ground for a host of first-year players looking to make an impact.
That starts with the freshmen who redshirted last year.
Cornerbacks Gareon Conley and Eli Apple were both rated 4-star prospects coming out of high school. The Buckeyes could have used that kind of talent in the back end of their defense last year—when they ranked No. 110 out of 123 teams in pass defense—but both rode the pine all season.
This spring, they’re breaking out as playmakers.
Meyer recently lamented not playing Conley,…
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