Ohio State Football: 2024 Buckeye season will hinge on the offensive line

The Ohio State football team is loaded for the 2024 season but the results will hinge on the offensive line's growth.

Nov 5, 2022; Evanston, Illinois, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes offensive line coach Justin Frye takes the
Nov 5, 2022; Evanston, Illinois, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes offensive line coach Justin Frye takes the / Adam Cairns/Columbus Dispatch / USA
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The Ohio State football team is loaded for 2024. Bringing in excellent recruits and transfers alike, Ryan Day and his staff have hit a home run this offseason. On paper, the Buckeye team have to be the most talented team in the country, especially on defense where they return nine starters and added Caleb Downs to the mix.

But for all that has gone right in Columbus this offseason, like in many years, the results of the 2024 football season will hinge upon the offensive line's growth and development. Former Alabama center Seth McLaughlin looks to be taking over the same spot for the Ohio State football team, and he should be an upgrade over Carson Hinzman who was average at best.

Donovan Jackson returns at guard for his senior season. He should be a mainstay, even though his play appeared to have dipped last year. Josh Simmons is probably locked in at left tackle again. It's visible to the untrained eye why offensive line coach Justin Frye went out in the portal and grabbed Simmons last offseason. While still a bit raw, he's probably the most athletic starter the Buckeyes have amongst its offensive line.

The right side of the line is where this season will be won or lost. Josh Fryar, the starting right tackle last year should be kicked inside to guard, or at worst he should be the top backup next year. He struggled at tackle, especially in Big Ten play.

And I believe Ohio State is really hoping that sophomore Luke Montgomery will be ready at right tackle in 2024. He was their best offensive line recruit from the 2023 class as a four-star, top-100 player from Findlay, Ohio. We will find out this Spring if he's up to the challenge.

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But make no mistake, even with all the talent that was added this offseason or was brought back to the roster, Ohio State's season will ultimately come down to how well Justin Frye gets his line to play. And based on what I have seen in the last two seasons under Frye, there certainly is reason to be concerned.