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Which former Ohio State safety would you want back in Columbus?

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NCAA FOOTBALL: OCT 08 Indiana at Ohio State Photo by Khris Hale/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Ohio State, otherwise known as “DBU,” is nothing if not a safety/cornerback conveyer belt for the NFL. In the 2020 Draft, the Buckeyes saw Jeff Okudah go No. 3 overall, Damon Arnette go No. 19 overall and Jordan Fuller go No. 199. In recent years, we’ve also seen the likes of Marshon Lattimore, Eli Apple, Malik Hooker, Vonn Bell and Denzel Ward make a name for themselves in the league.

Since Gene already covered the cornerbacks, its time to zone in on the safety position, which happens to be one of the big question marks on Ohio State’s roster as we approach the 2020-21 season.

Fuller is now with the Los Angeles Rams, and its looking like junior safety Josh Proctor will be the next man up. Last season, Proctor played in nine games, and totaled 13 total tackles, one interception and three pass breakups.

While we haven’t seen a whole lot of what he can do, Proctor obviously shows promise. In fact, he’s expected to be less of a Fuller-type safety and more Malik Hooker-esque, meaning he’s likely to take more chances at the position, go for the interception, and overall be a little less reserved than Fuller.

Behind Proctor on the depth chart there’s sophomore Marcus Hooker (Malik’s younger brother), redshirt freshmen Ronnie Hickman and Bryson Shaw, and freshmen Lathan Ransom and Kourt Williams.

There’s really no reason to believe that Proctor won’t be on the field come September, but again, for this series’ purposes, we’re going to imagine a world where Proctor gets injured, loses all his talent, mysteriously vanishes, whatever story you want to go with, and Ryan Day is allowed to teleport any former Ohio State safety and put him in this season’s lineup. Who would you want him to choose?

If it were up to me, I’d go with Malik Hooker. For one, we lost him to the NFL way too soon. He only played one real season as a Buckeye in 2016 before getting drafted No. 15 overall to the Indianapolis Colts. During that season, he racked up 74 total tackles, seven interceptions, three defensive touchdowns and four pass breakups. I miss the electricity Hooker brought to the Buckeyes’ secondary, and while we’ve had insanely good talent succeed him, we haven’t really had a seven-interception guy since Hooker.

The only Buckeye safety to have pulled off more than seven single season interceptions is Mike Sensibaugh, who had eight in 1970 and nine in 1969.

Speaking of which, maybe you’d like Day to bring back Sensibaugh, who is not only tied as the program leader for single season interceptions, but also career interceptions (22).

Another solid option would be Mike Doss, who collected a total of 331 tackles, six quarterback sacks, eight interceptions, eight fumble recoveries and three defensive touchdowns. Doss was also chosen as Defensive MVP of the 2002 Fiesta Bowl 31-24 double-overtime victory over Miami.

We all have our favorite Ohio State safeties, and your first choice will likely be based on the fond memories you have of watching that particular player. But, I urge you to pick your player based on the current 2020-21 roster, coaching staff and schedule. I’d kill to see a Hooker/Wade duo on the field this season (but hey, we just might be getting that with Proctor anyway!)

So, let’s hear it.

Which former Ohio State safety would you want back in Columbus? Let us know in the comments!