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Three Buckeyes make ESPN top-50 list

A trio of OSU football players are projected to have a big 2019 season.

NCAA Football: Big Ten Conference-Football Championship-Northwestern vs Ohio State Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

“Keep in mind that this is a projection of what players will do in 2019 and not necessarily a career achievement award of what they’ve done to this point. In other words, everybody will surely agree with our selections, and there won’t be any cries of favoritism for this conference or cries of bias against that conference.”


As we inch closer and closer to the start of college football, we are almost out of preseason lists and rankings season. The key word is almost, as ESPN just put out their top-50 projection for who they think will be the best players in 2019. To nobody’s surprise, Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence tops the list, followed by Alabama QB Tua Tagovailoa. While the ballot is heavily populated by members of the Tigers and Crimson Tide, there are also three Buckeyes that made the cut, headed by none other than defensive end Chase Young.

Young is the highest ranked Ohio State player on the list, coming in at No. 9. Coming off a sophomore year in which he lead the Bucks in both sacks (10) and tackles for loss (15.5), Young is finally fully healthy and ready to really show his true potential in 2019. The junior, who is already built for the pros at 6-foot-5, 265 pounds, is projected by many as a top-five pick in next year’s NFL Draft. Young is looking to become just the second player in program history to record double-digit sacks in multiple seasons, the only other being Mike Vrabel.

Junior running back J.K. Dobbins makes the list at No. 35, falling down from No. 23 last year after a bit of a sophomore slump in 2018. The first running back in Ohio State history to record 1,000-yard seasons in both his freshman and sophomore year, a third-such performance would tie him with Archie Griffin as the only Buckeye with three 1,000-yard rushing seasons. Entrenched firmly as RB No. 1 on the depth chart, with a QB adept at running the option, Dobbins should bounce back in a big way this season.

Finally, despite having never played a single snap at Ohio State, quarterback Justin Fields comes in at No. 49 on the list. Fields has been regarded as an incredible talent ever since high school, and will have a chance to show out in a Buckeye offense built almost perfectly for his skill set. If he is able to live up to expectations, Fields could very well be one of the best players in all of DI in 2019.

Other notable players on the list include Wisconsin’s Jonathan Taylor at No. 6, Purdue’s Rondale Moore at No. 12 and Michigan’s Shea Patterson at No. 26.

Kyle Snyder continues to dominate the wrestling world and make both the Buckeye faithful and team USA proud. Snyder earned his second-straight gold medal for USA Wrestling as he defeated Jose Diaz of Venezuela at the Pan American Games.

After falling behind 3-0 early, Snyder turned it up a notch with a 9-0 run to come away with an easy 9-3 win. Snyder was shocked by his opponent’s early success, but was glad he was able to experience some adversity and respond to it.

“It seemed like he was prepared for it,” Snyder said. “I need to be a little more stingy in that position. It’s good to experience all types of situations to prepare you for your future matches.”

Overall, the USA won 15 medals, with six in men’s freestyle, five in women's freestyle and four in Greco-Roman. The men’s freestyle team was able to take home a medal at every weight class. The team will now look forward to the 2019 World Wrestling Championships, taking place in Kazakhstan on Sept. 14.

Malik Hooker is good at football

This isn’t really news I just wanted an excuse to post a Malik Hooker highlight.

Check out the former ballhawking Ohio State safety making a sweet one-handed interception in Colts training camp as he preps for his third season in the NFL. Hooker started in all 13 games he played in a season ago, recording two interceptions and a fumble recovery to go along with 41 combined tackles.

Former Ohio State quarterback Tate Martell transferred from the program in search of a starting spot upon the news of Justin Fields’ intentions of joining the Buckeyes. After being granted an immediate eligibility waiver for 2019 as a member of the University of Miami, it appeared as though he was in line to be the Canes’ starter this season. Instead, Martell will have a bit more work to do, as Miami head coach Manny Diaz has announced redshirt freshman Jarren Williams will be the starting QB in the team's season opener against Florida.

Martell, the No. 2 dual-threat quarterback in the 2017 class appeared in six games for the Buckeyes in 2018, completing 23 of 28 passes for 269 yards and a TD, while adding 128 yards and two TDs on 22 rushing attempts. He entered Canes preseason camp in a battle for the starting job with both Williams and the returning N’Kosi Perry, who struggled in 11 games for Miami last season.

Early season depth charts are usually a little fluid, and if Williams struggles, it would not be surprising to see Martell get some time and perhaps even earn the starting spot down the road.

Diaz has not yet named the official backup to Williams at this time.

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