It is well known by now who the key players will be for Ohio State as they take on Virginia Tech in a highly anticipated rematch.
Ezekiel Elliott, J.T. Barrett, (or Cardale Jones) and Michael Thomas are all names that come to mind. Lets take a look at some of the players flying under the radar that will be key cogs in Ohio State’s Labor Day match up in Blacksburg.
No. 5- Marcus Baugh:
Redshirt sophomore tight end Marcus Baugh may not be a name you think of when it comes to key players for Ohio State, but he could play a huge role in tonight’s match up with Virginia Tech. Baugh is slated to be the second tight end behind senior Nick Vannett in an Ohio State offense that loves double tight end sets. Even at 6’5, 255 pounds, Baugh is an exceptional athlete. Rated a four-star and top 150 prospect by all the major recruiting rankings out of high school, (Rivals, Scout, ESPN, 247Sports) Baugh has the talent to fill the role Vannett filled last season as an understudy to Jeff Heuerman last season. Ohio State also doesn’t know what it will get out of its receiving core Monday night, so the tight ends could play a huge factor.
No. 4-Gareon Conley:
We all know how important it is to have good defensive backs. Just look at the 2013 Ohio State Buckeyes who’s leaky secondary probably cost them a shot at a national championship. That goes to show the importance Conley will play for the Buckeyes tonight as well as this season. Slotted as the starter at corner opposite Eli Apple, the former number one player in the state of Ohio out of high school (ESPN) will need to show he can hold his own. In his only start last season against Michigan State, Conley looked unsure and not ready to live up to the pressure that comes with playing for Ohio State. Conley’s play against an average VT receiving core will be one of the key aspects in tonight’s match up.
No. 3-Tyquan Lewis:
A lot of talk goes to the other defensive end for Ohio State, Joey Bosa, and for good reason. Bosa is well known as one of the top defensive players in college football. But there is a new defensive end lining up on the weak side for the defending national champions. That man is redshirt sophomore Tyquan Lewis, and his play in tonight’s game will be even more important with Joey Bosa set to serve his one-game suspension. Replacing dependable senior Steve Miller, Lewis has the strength and pass rush ability to be a force on the Ohio State Defense. Lewis was said to have had a great spring and fall camp as the new starter, and it will show tonight in Blacksburg.
No. 2-Tommy Schutt:
Schutt takes over at defensive tackle this season in replace of arguably Ohio State’s most important player on defense last season in departed senior and NFL draft pick Michael Bennett. Now a senior, look for Schutt to step up in place of Bennett and prove himself on one of the nations best defensive fronts. Schutt was also the first player to commit to Urban Meyer’s first recruiting class at Ohio State. Rated a five-star prospect out of high school and the number five defensive tackle in the country back then, (Scout.com) tonight is the night Schutt may finally live up to that billing. Schutt has the ability to penetrate as Bennett was so good at, and should cause problems for the Virginia Tech offensive line.
No. 1-Chase Farris:
Fifth-year senior Chase Farris will start his first game as a Buckeye tonight at Lane Stadium, and he is one the most underrated aspects of the chase to repeat for the Buckeyes. Farris takes over for departed senior Darryl Baldwin at the right tackle spot for the Buckeyes. Farris has paid his dues, switching from offense to defense, back to offense for Ohio State until finally being named starting right tackle for this season. Farris is athletic, (a former high school basketball player) and will need to be tonight facing one the best defensive end tandems in college football. How Farris performs is a very underrated aspect of how Ohio State will performs tonight against the Hokies.
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