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Ohio State will see a familiar face in Indiana

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An offensive lineman who traded in Scarlet and Gray for Crimson and Cream and an All-American safety highlight the transfers from Ohio State during the Urban Meyer era.

Former Buckeye Timothy Gardner during his days at Ohio State
Former Buckeye Timothy Gardner during his days at Ohio State

When the Ohio State football team makes its way onto the Memorial Stadium Field Turf Saturday afternoon, a former Buckeye will be waiting for them on the opposite sideline in an Indiana jersey.


Current Hoosiers offensive lineman Tim Gardner was a member of Ohio State’s 2013 recruiting class. But, Gardner waded into some trouble in Columbus and never saw game action. Eventually, the Indianapolis native found a second chance an hour south of home at Indiana.


With many Ohio State players going up against a former teammate Saturday and ex-Buckeye Jeremy Cash garnering four national player of the week honors for his role in Duke’s upset victory over Georgia Tech last weekend, there's no better time to list all of the players that transferred to another school since Urban Meyer took over at Ohio State in November 2011.


The list includes players that left Ohio State with the intent of suiting up for another program, but did not play again for whatever reason. The list also comprises players who originally signed a letter of intent and/or enrolled with Ohio State, but does not incorporate players who left the program for medical (Devan Bogard, Conner Crowell, etc.) or non-medical reasons (Chris Carter, Antonio Underwood, etc.)


2011 season/offseason


Jaamal Berry


Reason for leaving: Berry was charged with assault and disorderly conduct in November 2011, and parted ways with Ohio State the following February.


Ohio State stats: Berry redshirted as a true freshman in 2009. The next year, Berry was Ohio State’s top kick returner and the team’s fourth-leading rusher. In 2011, Berry returned seven kicks for a 21.4-yard average.


Next school: Murray State.


The Latest: Berry moved on to Murray State, an FCS school, so he was eligible to play right away in 2012. That fall, Berry averaged over seven yards per carry on 95 totes and added 234 yards receiving. In 2013, Berry was Murray State's top rusher, running for 697 yards and five touchdowns. He added 200 yards receiving.


Brian Bobek


Reason for leaving: A touted center prospect coming out of high school, Bobek fell behind Corey Linsley and Jacoby Boren on Ohio State’s depth chart under Meyer.


Ohio State stats: Bobek saw limited action as a freshman in 2011 before transferring.


Next school: Minnesota.


The Latest: After sitting out the 2012 season per NCAA transfer rules, Bobek sat again in 2013 with a medical issue. Bobek saw action in three games in 2014, but has earned the starting center spot this season as a redshirt senior.


Jeremy Cash


Reason for leaving: Once Meyer was hired, Cash, a safety, decided to pack up and leave for Duke in what appeared to be a serious leap of faith.


Ohio State stats: Cash appeared in five games for the Buckeyes in 2011, making three tackles.


Next school: Duke.


The Latest: Cash has blossomed in Durham after sitting out the 2012 season as a transfer, picking up various All-American honors after the 2013 and 2014 campaigns in which the Florida native picked up 233 tackles, 20 tackles for loss, 11 pass breakups, six interceptions, six forced fumbles, and 5.5 sacks. Cash has started 31 straight games for the Blue Devils, and his 2015 season is off to a flying start, as he ranks first on Duke in tackles (34), tackles for loss (eight), forced fumbles (three), and sacks (1.5). In Duke’s upset of Georgia Tech last week, Cash paced the Blue Devils with 12 tackles, three tackles for loss, and a sack. He added four quarterback hurries and a pair of forced fumbles. In the days after his sterling performance vs. Georgia Tech, Cash collected four separate national player of the week honors.


David Durham


Reason for leaving: Durham, a defensive lineman in high school, sat out the 2010 season as a redshirt, then played in five games during the 2011 season following a position switch to fullback. Durham didn’t feel like he would be a fit for Meyer’s spread system, so he left the program in February 2012.


Ohio State stats: None.


Next school: Pittsburgh.


The Latest: Durham sat out the 2012 season as a transfer. In the 2013 and 2014 seasons, Durham moved back to defensive end and totaled 21 starts, racking up 51 tackles, four tackles for loss and three sacks.


Taylor Graham


Reason for leaving: A pro-style quarterback, Graham figured he would be a poor fit for Meyer’s offense and exited Columbus. Graham, an Illinois native, redshirted as a true freshman in 2010 and did not see any action in 2011 as a backup.


Ohio State stats: None.


Next school: Hawaii.


The Latest: Over the 2013 and 2014 seasons, Graham appeared in eight games for Hawaii, completing 47.5 percent of his passes for 595 yards, three touchdowns and six interceptions.


Kenny Hayes


Reason for leaving: Hayes left Ohio State for undisclosed reasons in August 2012 after redshirting the 2011 season as a true freshman.


Ohio State stats: None.


Next school: Toledo.


The Latest: Toledo’s records show no indication that Hayes ever suited up for the Rockets.


Jordan Whiting


Reason for leaving: Whiting, once a highly-touted linebacker prospect out of Louisville, redshirted the 2009 season and saw minimal action in 2010. Whiting was on the Ohio State roster in the 2011 season, but apparently did not see the field.


Ohio State stats: One solo tackle and one assisted tackle.


Next school: Louisville.


The Latest: Whiting never played a down for the Cardinals because of a failed drug test.


2012 season/offseason


Dominic Clarke


Reason for leaving: Meyer cut Clarke loose in January 2012 after the defensive back was charged with drunken driving and, in a separate incident, was also arrested on a disorderly conduct charge. In the latter situation, Clarke allegedly fired a BB gun on Ohio State’s campus.


Ohio State stats: Clarke played in 25 games for the Buckeyes from 2010-11, recording 26 tackles and four pass breakups.


Next school: Illinois State.


The Latest: Eligible to play right away in 2012 after transferring to Illinois State, a FCS school, Clarke played in 24 games from 2012-13. He logged 75 tackles and 13 pass breakups.


Tim Gardner


Reason for leaving: Gardner was charged with obstruction of official police business during the summer of 2013 and was sent packing without ever playing a down for Ohio State.


Ohio State stats: None.


Next school: Indiana.


The Latest: Gardner spent the fall of 2013 at a prep school, then committed to Indiana in December 2013. After sitting out the 2014 campaign as a transfer, Gardner was among many Hoosiers suspended for Indiana’s 2015 opener, but he has played in the team’s last three games.


Najee Murray


Reason for leaving: Murray, a cornerback, departed Ohio State following a violation of team rules just before the start of the 2013 season.


Ohio State stats: Murray played in six games for Ohio State in 2012 before his season was cut short by a torn ACL.


Next school: Kent State.


The Latest: Murray played in eight games for the Golden Flashes in 2014, which included a return to Ohio Stadium for a 66-0 Week 3 loss to the Buckeyes. Through four games this fall, Murray, a junior, has eight tackles (one for loss) and five pass breakups.


Joey O’Connor


Reason for leaving: O’Connor, an offensive lineman from Colorado, redshirted as a true freshman in 2012. After announcing his decision to leave Ohio State in January of 2013 due to what seemed to be trouble adjusting to life in Columbus, O’Connor joined a new program a short time later.


Ohio State stats: None.


Next school: Colorado State.


The Latest: After sitting out the 2013 season as a transfer, O’Connor was forced to give up football due to recurring knee injuries.


David Perkins


Reason for leaving: Rumors of Perkins’ departure from the program began to circulate in the spring of 2013. The defensive end’s separation from Ohio State became official when he transferred in June 2013, which came not too long after Perkins was arrested and charged with four misdemeanors.


Ohio State stats: Perkins suited up in nine of Ohio State’s 12 games as a true freshman, collecting five solo tackles and a pass breakup. Perkins most famous (or infamous) moment was when he delivered a bone-crushing hit to Brutus on Student Appreciation Day in April 2013.


Next school: Illinois State.


The Latest: From 2013-14, Perkins tallied 17 tackles for loss, 12 sacks, and three forced fumbles for the Redbirds. Through three games this fall, Perkins has 2.5 tackles for loss and two sacks.


Se’Von Pittman


Reason for leaving: Meyer flipped Pittman, a touted defensive end prospect, from Michigan State to Ohio State in December 2011. Pittman had to sit out the 2012 season with a knee injury and transferred in June 2013.


Ohio State stats: None.


Next school: Akron.


The Latest: After sitting out the 2013 season as a transfer Pittman logged 36 tackles, 6.5 tackles for loss, and a sack in 12 games during Akron's 2014 slate. Through four games this season, Pittman has nine tackles, 4.5 tackles for loss, and one sack.


Verlon Reed


Reason for leaving: Reed’s potentially-promising career as a wide receiver at Ohio State was cut short by a knee injury during the 2011 season. After he recovered, Reed could not find any playing time, and he decided to transfer in January 2013.


Ohio State stats: Reed accumulated 140 yards on 11 touches in 2011, but notched just one catch in 2012.


Next school: Findlay.


The Latest: Reed chose to attend the University of Findlay and play right away at the Division II school after leaving Ohio State. Reed moved back to quarterback, his position in high school, and took off. Over two seasons, Reed appeared in 22 games and threw for 4,503 yards, 22 touchdowns, and 17 interceptions. Reed added 1,023 yards and nine touchdowns on the ground.


Ricquan Southward


Reason for leaving: The wide receiver left Ohio State for personal reasons in October 2012 while he was redshirting as a true freshman.


Ohio State stats: None.


Next school: Arizona Western.


The Latest: Southward turned up at Arizona Western, a junior college, for the 2014 season. He finished with five catches for 118 yards and one touchdown in three games. Colorado Mesa, a Division II school in Grand Junction, Colorado, tweeted in February that Southward had signed with the school, but he does not appear on the team's roster.


Tyrone Williams


Reason for leaving: Williams was given the boot from the Buckeyes in October 2012 for a violation of team rules.


Ohio State stats: Williams redshirted the 2010 season as a true freshman, then caught five passes in eight games in 2011. Williams had no receptions in 2012 before he was kicked off the team.


Next school: Ohio Dominican.

The Latest: Judging from Ohio Dominican’s records, Williams never suited up for the school he reportedly was intent on transferring to in January 2013.


Stay tuned for Part II.