At least 1 New LB Will Make an Immediate Impact for Ohio State

Urban Meyer is putting together a major offensive line haul in the 2017 class. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports
Urban Meyer is putting together a major offensive line haul in the 2017 class. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports /

At least one of these two outstanding linebackers could make an impact for Ohio State next season.

Urban Meyer was in need of two linebackers in his 2017 Ohio State recruiting class. He landed a 5 star linebacker from Texas and a terrific 4 star player from Indiana.

Baron Browning is 6’2, 229 pounds and is listed is the No. 1 linebacker in the nation in the 247Sports Composite. He was the 4A Defensive player of the year in Texas. Browning was also a finalist for the Butkus Award as the nation’s top linebacker and was named a U.S. Army All-American.

There is a good chance Browning could play middle linebacker for Ohio State. He is a big, fast, athletic linebacker Urban Meyer may need next season.

With Raekwon McMillan gone, there will be a big void in the middle. There is no shortage of talented linebackers who may be able to play inside or outside for the Buckeyes, it’s just that they haven’t been able to stay healthy.

Every linebacker will have a chance to compete for the starting middle linebacker position. There will be open competitions for backup spots at a couple of positions as well with Joe Burger and Craig Fada graduating.

Browning is already enrolled at Ohio State so he will have plenty time to work on his strength and conditioning with coach Mick before next season. He will also have spring football to get acclimated to the speed of the game at the college level, and become familiar with the defensive scheme to prepare for fall camp.

I fully expect Browning to make an impact on special teams and as a part-time player next season similar to how McMillan was used his freshman season.

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Pete Werner is an athletic 6’3, 220 pound 4 star linebacker and a top 300 player. It appears he has the frame to pack on weight and muscle to move inside if need be.

I’ll be honest with you, I can’t find a lot of info on Werner. About all I have heard about him is that he is a darn good football player who can do it all, and his father played in the NFL. That’s always a good thing.

From his highlights, Werner reminds me somewhat of a smaller version of Sam Hubbard in high school. He is fast, athletic and hits a ton.

Urban Meyer has to be happy with the two linebackers in his 2017 Ohio State class. Having two versatile players like Baron Browning and Pete Werner, with the uncertainty in the linebacking unit, may pay dividends as early as next season.

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I wouldn’t be surprised if both saw playing time as true freshmen. They may be too talented to keep on the sidelines for a year.