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Buckeye Bits: Matt Barnes on replacing Jordan Fuller, new “EQUALITY” helmet decal, more

All of the latest Ohio State news from around the beat and beyond.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: DEC 28 CFP Semifinal at the Fiesta Bowl - Clemson v Ohio State Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Troy Smith days until Ohio State football! Hopefully Big Ten teams have learned a lesson or two from the conferences who are currently playing because, well, those conferences are in shambles. All I have to say is, take in every. single. snap. this season because the next game is not guaranteed. I don’t care if the score is 59-0 against Rutgers at the beginning of the fourth quarter and our third-strings are already on the field. Don’t turn the channel.

Anywho, let’s get into today’s headlines, which include some safeties and specialists talk, fans being mad at players voicing their opinions and the circus that is the SEC.

From around Land-Grant Holy Land...

Another weekend of standout performances for Ohio State commits

Gene Ross, LGHL

The future of Ohio State football is bright, as incoming Buckeyes continue to stand out in their high school seasons.

Column: I’m excited for Justin Fields to become the best quarterback in Ohio State history

Matt Tamanini, LGHL

Same, Matt. Same.

Yesterday’s Bits

Gene Ross, LGHL

Speaking of the best quarterback in Ohio State history, Fields met with the media yesterday to talk about his goals, his coaches and more. Check out yesterday’s Bits to hear what the G. Q. B. O. A. T. had to say.

From around the gridiron...

Ohio State’s safeties coach and special teams coordinator Matt Barnes met with the media on Wednesday to discuss his position group, beginning with safeties Marcus Hooker and Josh Proctor. He said he thinks both are “outstanding players and outstanding young men,” but their skill sets are different, which allows them to play in different spots.

Barnes also went into replacing now-Los Angeles Rams safety Jordan Fuller, saying he’s tasked with replacing more than just his physical presence (which he’s not so worried about), but also his football mind and consistency.

The self-proclaimed “football junkie” also announced that Bradley Robinson is currently in line to start at long snapper this season, but nothing is set in stone. He is battling Liam McCullough’s brother, Roen, for the job.

But Barnes wasn’t ready to let us in on the other position battles happening inside the special reams room.

Next at the podium was safety Marcus Hooker, who began by saying it’s been great having Kerry Coombs back, even though “they do get yelled at a lot,” and that he and Proctor bring out the best in one another due to their different skill sets.

Must run in the family, eh? He also said Ohio State’s receivers haven’t made life easy for him in practice.

Following Hooker was — you guessed it — Josh Proctor, who said he often goes back and watches the Clemson-loss for motivation, and that he’s working on becoming a leader like Fuller.

Next up were the specialists, punter Drue Chrisman and kicker Blake Haubeil. Chrisman said he and Robinson have been working together during the offseason, finding any field they could since they weren’t allowed to punt/snap at the facility.

Chrisman also said that Terry Mclaurin was the best punt gunner he’s ever worked with, and that Chris Olave and Proctor have spent time at gunner in practice.

Last but not least, Haubeil said he’s been spending his offseason working on consistency.

For more quotes and position updates, check out Eleven Warriors Presser Bullets.

The Buckeyes are expected to wear a decal with the word “EQUALITY” on their helmets this season, written in black capital letters on the lower back of the helmet.

This will likely result in weeding out the fans who don’t agree with this sentiment. One can only hope.

Hopefully Ohio State makes the cut!


From around the hardwood...

The Basketball Buckeyes will begin their 2020 season in Sioux Falls, South Dakota this year as part of the season-opening Crossover Classic, which was originally scheduled as the 10th annual Battle 4 Atlantis event in the Bahamas (but you know... coronavirus). In what will be a three-day, three-game event, Ohio State’s first-round matchup will be the Memphis Tigers, and is set to tip at 4:30 p.m. on Nov. 25 at the Sanford Pentagon.

The NCAA also announced their future host cities for the first, second and regional rounds of the 2023-2026 NCAA Tournaments. Columbus, Ohio is included on that list for the first and second rounds in 2023, while the yearly “First Four” round will continue to be played in at the University of Dayton Arena.

From everywhere else...

Florida’s game against LSU, originally scheduled for this Saturday, has been tentatively rescheduled for Dec. 12 after the Gators reported 21 positive COVID-19 cases.

This news comes just a few days after Florida head coach Dan Mullens asked that fans “pack the swamp,” due to Florida’s governor lifting attendance restrictions. Mullens apologized for those comments, and his athletic director more or less told him to stick to sports.

Ole Miss’ game against Arkansas might be next on the postponement list, as Lane Kiffin announced that they are dealing with their first COVID-19 “issues.”

If Ole Miss’ situation escalates between now and Saturday, three SEC matchups will not be played this weekend.

And just minutes before this article goes live, it was announced that Alabama head coach Nick Saban and athletic director Greg Byrne have tested positive. No. 2 Alabama plays No. 3 Georgia Saturday night.

While Saban may be our enemy any other day of the week, we definitely don’t delight in this news. I hope he, Byrne and everyone else in the SEC who has tested positive makes a speedy recovery!

And, sure, we can rag on the south all we want, but we don’t really have room to talk.

We’re not even close to going back to “normal,” because people refuse to wear a cloth over their face. It’s as simple as that. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

And I’ll leave you with this pure moment between J.K. Dobbins and Billy Price.