Cardale Jones may have to report with the rest of the Buffalo Bills rookies to training camp in a week, but the former Ohio State quarterback took some time on Wednesday night to help the Make-A-Wish foundation. Rob Wells of WSYX ABC 6 in Columbus was at L.E.P.D Firearms and Range last night as Cardale Jones met with Austin Smith. The 18-year old from Grove City is battling Hodgkin's lymphoma and his wish through the Make-A-Wish foundation was go to the shooting range with Jones.
When asked by doctors what his wish through the foundation would be, Smith was hesitant to ask for anything, feeling there were others out there who deserved it more. While Jones may have been nicknamed "12 Gauge" for his arm, he met his match in the shooting range with Smith. Even though the two had only limited time to spend together last night, Jones says the friendship between the two will stretch long into the future.
While over the past few months not only have a lot of rookies in the NFL realized their dream of being drafted along with signing their first NFL contract, finding out their Madden ratings might be the highlight of their time in the professional ranks so far. Ohio State is well represented in this year's rookie rankings, with Ezekiel Elliott and Joey Bosa being included in EA Sports' rankings of the top-five rookies in Madden this year. Elliott, who was given an 80 overall rating, is ranked second, just behind Jacksonville cornerback Jalen Ramsey. Defensive end Joey Bosa was given the fifth best rating amongst rookies, with Baltimore offensive tackle Ronnie Stanley and Tampa Bay kicker Roberto Aguayo in between Elliott and Bosa.
Even though most players are elated that it's their first time officially being in the popular football game, many weren't quite happy with their rating. Buffalo Bills quarterback Cardale Jones was expecting his throwing power to be rated at 103, and upon finding out he was only given a 96 rating he said the game must have a glitch. Houston Texans wide receiver Braxton Miller was also asked to predict his juke rating in the video game, and after guessing he'd be given a 99, he was told he was only rated at 88. For some the lower than expected ratings can give them a little extra juice on the field to try and saw the Madden developers to up their ratings throughout the season.
"These past couple of weeks have been really special because it's starting to sink in a little bit when you start preparing for the speech. But just the reaction of my teammates, everywhere you go you're known as a Hall of Famer now."
After a 13-year NFL career, in which he was named to the Pro Bowl seven times, it wasn't a question as to if former Ohio State offensive tackle Orlando Pace would be elected into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, but when. Last year Pace missed out on being a first-ballot Hall of Famer, but the night before this year's Super Bowl he was selected to take his place amongst pro football's greatest players. On August 6th, Pace will be inducted in Canton to the Pro Football Hall of Fame, along with Brett Favre, Tony Dungy, the late Ken Stabler, and four others.
It seemed early on that Pace was destined for greatness, as he became just the second true freshman ever to start for the Buckeyes. Along with being named a two-time consensus first-team All-American at Ohio State, Pace also won the Lombardi Award in 1995 and 1996, along with the Outland Trophy in 1996. After being taken with the first overall pick in the 1997 NFL Draft by the St. Louis Rams, Pace continued his dominant play at the professional level. Pace's work on the offensive line is a big reason why the Rams were able to win Super Bowl XXXIV. Now in just a few short weeks "The Pancake Man" will be inducted by his son to take his place amongst the elites of pro football.
"We are very excited about the incoming class of players who we feel will address the positional needs required for the 2016 team. This is a very talented group of players, but also young men who will represent Ohio State in the highest standard possible in the classroom and community."
It has been nearly a decade since the Ohio State men's soccer team narrowly lost out on winning a NCAA Championship, losing to Wake Forest in the title game in 2007. Since then the Buckeyes have made it to the NCAA Tournament five times, but have failed to advance beyond the third round. Last year saw the Buckeyes take home the Big Ten regular season title before they fell to Stanford 3-1 in the third round of the NCAA Tournament. This year Ohio State could be primed for a deeper run in the tournament, as they have brought in the highest ranked recruiting class in school history.
The star of this year's recruiting class is defenseman Andrew Lombard, who transferred from Northeastern University. In 2015 Lombard was named to the under-20 U.S. National Team, and should help to bring some strength and stability to the Ohio State backline. Midfielder Leo Kossaka previously played for Canada's under-17 National Team, and was offered a contract to join the Montreal Impact of the MLS before deciding to come to Ohio State. Players from Ohio will make up five spots of this year's recruiting class, with three of them hailing from the Dublin area. Ohio State's recruiting class has been ranked fourth best in the country according to College Soccer News, giving the Buckeyes a top-10 ranked class for the second consecutive year.
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