The Ohio State football program's remarkable offseason turnaround

A lot of Ohio State football fans were down in the dumps with how the season ended. Since then, the Buckeyes have engineered an excellent offseason and turned attitudes from fans around heading into 2024.

Jan 17, 2024; Columbus, OH, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes football coach Ryan Day speaks to family
Jan 17, 2024; Columbus, OH, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes football coach Ryan Day speaks to family / Adam Cairns/Columbus Dispatch / USA

The Ohio State football program had one of the worst ends to the 2023 season of any major team. They lost their third straight game to TTUN and then laid a complete egg in the Cotton Bowl against Missouri. Things were looking bleak for the Buckeyes.

Then, something amazing happened. Ryan Day circled the wagons in a way I wasn't sure he was capable of. He turned a bad situation into a great start to 2024 using the transfer portal and a great finish to the early recruiting period. Now, there's a lot of optimism in Columbus.

Ohio State added a lot from the portal. They added a stud offensive lineman, one of the best safeties in the country, a new starting quarterback, one of the best running backs in the country, and a solid tight end. That's a heck of a haul for one offseason in the portal.

Not only did the Buckeyes make a lot of additions in the transfer portal, they were able to bring a lot of players back. Jack Sawyer, J.T. Tuimoloau, Ekeka Egbuka, Denzel Burke, and Lathan Ransom are all back. Those are all key players to a team that has national championship aspirations.

I've been critical of Day's ability to win big games. I will continue to be until he's able to prove he can beat great teams with his own players. But I have given credit to Day for the type of leader he is. His players truly love him and play hard for him. They want him to be proven right when he takes a chance on him.

Not every coach has those qualities. Because he has those qualities, he's been able to make Ohio State football fans very excited for the 2024 season. He has a team that should be a no-doubt CFP qualifier and one that should be in the Big Ten Championship game.

Next. Next story. Three worst head coaching hires in Ohio State football history. dark

We'll see how the Buckeyes are able to put it all together in the Fall. But so far, so good.