Mewhort Ready To Step Up

Ohio State is high on its potential starting five offensive linemen, including sophomore Jack Mewhort. The one-time four-star recruit has waited behind three-year starter Bryant Browning and All-Big Ten standout Justin Boren but looks ready to step in and be counted upon at left guard this fall.

Jack Mewhort can play anywhere Ohio State offensive line coach needs him to up front, but the Buckeyes will settle for seeing him fill a hole at left guard this fall.

It seems like the four-star recruit from Toledo St. John's has had to wait a while for his opportunity to bust into the starting lineup, but reality is he remains just a sophomore in terms of eligibility.

He enrolled in time for spring practice in 2009 and has practiced at guard, center and tackle during his time in Columbus, including a redshirt that first season.

Although the composition of the roster sometimes makes it impossible, Bollman likes to see most of his linemen go through a two-year apprenticeship, and Mewhort can see why.

"It's a mental game playing the offensive line here," Mewhort said. "It's a crazy system and there's a lot to learn. Everybody's head is spinning when they first get here. Some guys get it right away. We've got a couple of young guys who came in like that this year, so if you can get the mental aspect of it down that's like 80 percent of the game. That's the mental battle." 

The coaches have asked a lot of Mewhort as he bided his time. He has spent a lot of time inside but saw some reps at tackle this past spring.

Now he looks to be penciled in at left guard between new starter Andrew Norwell at left tackle and stalwart center Mike Brewster, and he is looking forward to stepping up.

"I definitely have an opportunity in front of me. We're all working hard, and I'm going to do all I can to make the most of my chance to contribute," Mewhort said.

"Every spring and every camp you gain a little more and retain a little more from the last time. There are definitely improvements not just in me but in everybody. I can just see it. I've been here a long time now it feels like, so my skills are starting to get a lot sharper so it feels good now that I've been through it a lot." 

He acknowledged the value of learning every position on the line but said he enjoys guard.

"I feel like i've got a pretty good grasp on the O-line," hew said. "I've played a lot of positions so that helps piece it all together, knowing what to do at tackle, knowing what to do at guard, knowing some of the calls at center. I feel like I can be pretty comfortable everywhere, but I love it at guard because you're inside and you can grind." 

Brewster expects to see Mewhort develop into a big-time player.

"He's my roommate. He's a great athlete - reminds me a lot of myself in his work ethic and stuff," Brewster said.

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