When Tom Herman left the Ohio State coaches box to run his own program at Houston, one of the end results was former Houston starter John O’Korn electing to leave the program.
O’Korn, who had an outstanding freshman season for the Cougars, had lost his job the previous fall to one of his wide receivers after failing to maintain much consistency in his second fall of football.
After considering Texas and a number of other programs, O’Korn ultimately landed at Michigan, where he was presumed heir apparent to another transfer, former Iowa QB Jake Rudock.
While Harbaugh was able to turn Rudock from an NFL after thought into a practice squad member of the Detroit Lions, O’Korn, some early offseason hype and all, wasn’t ever to quite make the same leap and ultimately lost out on the quarterback job to Wilton Speight.
Speight had been outstanding for much of the 2016 season, but struggled against Iowa’s defense in a hostile prime time environment. And during the Wolverines final drive, Speight took a hit that’ll apparently cost him the remainder of the regular season.
As first reported by MGoBlog, Speight evidently has suffered a broken collarbone and is out for the rest of the season. O’Korn is almost assuredly going to replace him, with former Michigan bowl gamer starter (and fairly persistent transfer rumor) Shane Morris also possibly considered.
Ohio State fans remember how their season expectations changed after J.T. Barrett was lost against Michigan two seasons ago and certainly how things went down after losing Braxton Miller in fall camp months earlier.
While no one’s saying O’Korn can live up to that same standard of understudy performance, it’s worth asking: should Ohio State get past the Wolverines in their season finale (which is a big if with or without Speight), would not having O’Korn negatively impact Ohio State’s playoff case in any way? The Wolverines still have to get past ever plucky Indiana before then too.