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Why is this news?: Ohio State marching band alumni show support for Jon Waters, Justin Hilliard's stock rises

All the big Ohio State news in one handy place.

"We, the undersigned, feel that your swift decision to terminate Jon Waters as Director of Marching & Athletic Bands is a miscalculated overreaction, and urge you to reconsider."

-Eric Bond, Petition Organizer

It looks like the Ohio State community isn’t taking the firing of former marching band director Jonathan Waters lying down. Two recent events have shown that the disgraced former boss of The Best Damn Band in the Land still has plenty of supporters in Columbus. Today a collection of marching band alumni marched across campus to demand that Ohio State reinstate Waters as its band director. The march began at the marching band facility in Ohio Stadium and ended at Bricker Hall, the building housing Ohio State’s administrative offices.

While the alumni marched, a petition was circulating online arguing for Waters’ reinstatement.

The petition was started by Eric Bond, a former staff member for Waters at Ohio State. The petition states of Waters "When it comes to the organizational culture, few have been as adamant or worked as hard as Jon Waters to improve the culture in recent years. This was mentioned in a couple of the "official" statements in the report, and surely in numerous personal accounts, letters, and emails that have been shared in recent days."

As of last count, the petition stands at around 5,200 signatures. While it is unlikely that the petition will lead to Waters’ reinstatement, it does stand as a testament to the fact that many in the Ohio State community still stand behind Waters.

The new ESPN 300 rankings are out and one Buckeye pledge saw his stock rise significantly. Outside linebacker Justin Hilliard of Cincinatti’s Saint Xavier High School is now ESPN’s 11th-ranked player in the country. This makes him the top-rated OLB in the nation and also the highest-ranked recruit in the state of Ohio.

Hilliard, who pledged to the Buckeyes on July 7, is joined in the top 100 of the rankings by two other future Buckeyes. Defensive end Jashon Cornell (Cretin-Derham Hall HS) checks in at number 18. Athlete Eric Glover Williams of Canton McKinley is ESPNS 100th-ranked prospect. Buckeye cornerback recruit Jamel Dean of Cocoa High School in Florida just missed the top 100, checking in at 112 on the list.

Ohio State’s 2015 class, which grew by two last week, now sits at sixth in the rankings.

"We’re not really adding time on to the academic year, just spreading it out and giving athletes a more balanced experience."

-Todd Yeagley, IU Soccer Coach

The push to split the NCAA soccer season into two halves gained a major supporter in Indiana’s national championship-winning head coach Todd Yeagley. In an interview with the Bloomington Herald Times, Yeagley said "Not as much travel, not as much quick recovery, less class time missed and better development – a lot of positives that go with the full-year model."

The split-season model for the college soccer season would involve a 25-game schedule spread out over the fall and spring semesters. Conference championships would be held in May with the College Cup taking place in June.

It was announced today that incoming OSU Freshman Will Grimmer will be in the field for the Junior PGA championship this Tuesday in Bryan, Texas. A student at Mariemont High School, Grimmer picked the Buckeyes over offers from schools like North Carolina, Illinois, and Virginia Tech. OSU’s world-class golf facilities weighed heavily in his decision. Grimmer’s biggest claim to fame is the course-record 59 (11 under par) that he shot in 2013 at Pinehurst No. 1.