This offseason when talking about the failures of 2013, Ohio State Buckeyes head coach Urban Meyer pointed the finger at himself at one point, stating that he made a mistake by redshirting too many players, leaving some talented youngsters off the field that could have made a difference in the team’s national title campaign.
He has already stated that he won’t let the same mistake happen this season, but just how many true freshmen from the 2014 recruiting class will see playing time?
According to Brian Bennett of ESPN, it could be as many as nine:
Meyer told me this spring, as he said often, that he made a mistake by not playing more true freshmen last season. He plans to avoid that in 2014. At the same time, he’s not going to play freshmen just to play them. Barring injuries, it’s safe to say that Raekwon McMillan, Johnnie Dixon, Curtis Samuel and Jalyn Holmes will play. Erick Smith could get a look at safety. Guys like Marshon Lattimore andMalik Hooker could force their way onto the field on special teams, at the very least. The more likely redshirt candidates are offensive linemen, like Kyle Trout and Brady Taylor, and quarterback Stephen Collier. Expect to see a lot of true freshmen on the field for the Buckeyes, but if a whole bunch of them are in key roles, that’s probably not the best sign.
Whether or not those freshmen that redshirted last season would have made any sort of difference, we’ll never know. But, we do know that it certainly won’t be an issue this season.