Football season won’t be here for a while, but Mark Schlabach has updated his pre-season Top 25 now that national signing day has passed. He has the Buckeyes at #7, which seems about right.
7. Ohio State Buckeyes. The Buckeyes suffered heavy personnel losses from the team that lost to Texas 24-21 in the Fiesta Bowl. Linebackers James Laurinaitis and Marcus Freeman, receiver Brian Robiskie and cornerback Malcolm Jenkins were seniors last season. Then tailback Chris “Beanie” Wells and receiver Brian Hartline decided to skip their senior seasons and enter the NFL draft. Terrelle Pryor should improve in his second season as a starting quarterback, and the Ohio State coaches feel confident about tailback Dan Herron, who filled in well when Wells was hurt in 2008. Pryor must become a better passer during the offseason, and the receiver corps will have to be rebuilt. There won’t be much time for the Buckeyes to jell, however, as USC will play in the Horseshoe on Sept. 12.
The Buckeyes are fortunate tha Mark Sanchez decided to leave USC for the NFL draft. It gives them a much better chance in the early-season showdown.
As a side note, what the heck is Brian Hartline thinking?