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Ohio State’s Garrett Wilson and Matthew Baldwin have unfinished business from high school

The Lake Travis teammates will be looking to win the championship that eluded them.

NCAA Football: U.S. Army All-American Bowl Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

“I think everyone knew that Garrett might end up at Ohio State because that’s his family’s roots, but Matthew going to Ohio State ... It stunned a lot of people. He doesn’t have any ties to Ohio State, and there’s really not an Ohio State pipeline to Lake Travis necessarily.”

Thomas Jones, Austin American Statesman community sports editor, on wide receiver Garrett Wilson and quarterback Matthew Baldwin via Colin Gay, The Lantern

Georgia transfer quarterback Justin Fields is the new Buckeye who is getting the most headlines this offseason, but the most intriguing true freshman coming to Columbus is wide receiver Garrett Wilson. Ryan Day let Wilson know of Ohio State’s interest since Day took over as a co-offensive coordinator in 2017. The hard work Day put in on the recruiting trail paid off, as Wilson decided Ohio State was the right place for the wide receiver to showcase his talents.

Wilson isn’t the only Lake Travis star who will be suiting up for the scarlet and gray the next few years. Matthew Baldwin, who started at quarterback for Lake Travis in 2017, has already spent a season in Columbus. Baldwin threw for 3,842 yards and 44 touchdowns for Lake Travis in 2017, with Wilson hauling in 96 catches for 1,764 yards and 26 touchdowns. The lone season as starter at Lake Travis didn’t have a happy ending though, as Baldwin injured his knee on the first play of the Texas 6A State Championship Game.

When Day first took over as a co-offensive coordinator at Ohio State, the Buckeyes highlighted their running game more, but that didn’t stop Day from telling Wilson he envisioned Ohio State with more of a pass-heavy offense. Wilson got a glimpse into what Day had in mind this year when Dwayne Haskins threw for 51 touchdowns. Baldwin and Wilson also talked regularly during the season, and Baldwin was able to give Wilson an idea on what life would be like at Ohio State.

Even though Fields is likely to get the first crack at the quarterback position for Ohio State this year, it doesn’t matter to Wilson who will be throwing the football to him, the wide receiver just wants to make an impact early on. It certainly doesn’t hurt Ohio State that Wilson and Baldwin feel like they have some unfinished business after they weren’t able to win the state title in high school. While it almost feels like a given that Wilson will put up some big numbers before his time in Columbus is up, don’t sleep on Baldwin doing the same when his number is called.

“I’m a physical back and I feel like I can do it all.”

Ohio State freshman running back Marcus Crowley via Dave Biddle, Bucknuts

With Mike Weber declaring for the NFL Draft, as well as Brian Snead deciding to transfer out of the program, Ohio State is going to need a running back to step up behind starter J.K. Dobbins. One running back who is already stating his case to see some early playing time is Marcus Crowley.

After a junior season in which he ran for 1,210 yards and 12 touchdowns, Crowley really made a name for himself in 2018 when he was named Florida’s Gatorade Player of the Year after rushing for 2,325 yards and 28 touchdowns. Crowley verbally committed to Ohio State in early November, and officially signed his letter of intent during the early signing period in December.

Crowley enrolled in January classes at Ohio State, allowing him to take part in Mickey Marotti’s strength and conditioning program. Even though he has been a part of the program for just a short time, Crowley has already seen significant changes, already adding nearly 10 pounds of muscle. With the guidance of Marotti and running backs coach Tony Alford, it wouldn’t be a surprise if Crowley made some noise on the field for Ohio State in 2019.

“He’s been great in practice. And I think like any freshman you get knocked around a little bit and yelled at by the coaches — It’s a long season and that can get the best of you at times, but if we’re not correcting you, that’s when you start to worry. I think he understands it.”

Ohio State men’s basketball coach Chris Holtmann on forward Justin Ahrens via Marcus Hartman, Dayton Daily News

Justin Ahrens hasn’t even seen 100 minutes on the court this year, but head coach Chris Holtmann is happy with the progress he has seen from the freshman forward so far. Ahrens only saw more than 10 minutes on the floor once before the start of 2019, but his workload picked up a bit when power forward Kyle Young missed four games due to a stress fracture in his foot.

During his high school career at Versailles High School, Ahrens became the Midwest Athletic Conference’s all-time leading scorer. Ahrens hasn’t been able to showcase his scoring abilities during his short time at Ohio State, but Holtmann is confident Ahrens’ scoring touch will come around in time. Holtmann has been impressed with Ahrens’ approach and attitude so far, and the results will show when his number is called more in the future.

Ohio State’s men’s tennis team has started the season 9-0, which has led to the Buckeyes earning the No. 1 ranking in the UTSA poll and the No. 1 seed at the ITA National Indoor Championships. The top ranking and seed come on the heels of Ohio State defeating No. 5 USC 5-0 on Tuesday. Ohio State also has wins over No. 10 Stanford and No. 24 Georgia this season.

Ohio State now will turn their attention to the ITA National Indoor Championships this weekend in Chicago. The Buckeyes won the tournament in 2014, and will begin their quest for another title on Friday afternoon when they square off with No. 16 Tulane. If Ohio State is able to beat Tulane on Friday, they’ll move on to face the winner of a matchup between Stanford and Virginia.