Miller may be returning for his fourth year as the Buckeyes' starter, but the race the replace Kenny Guiton as his understudy could prove to be a crucial one given Miller's injury-plagued past. All indications right now are that Barrett has the leg up over the older Jones in that category, while Collier is a likely redshirt candidate.
Filling in for the Big Ten's reigning running back of the year in Carlos Hyde will be far from a cakewalk, but Elliott could bring a different dimension to the Ohio State offense with his versatility and ability in space. It's now or never for Smith, who has shown flashes and not much else in his four seasons in Columbus, while classmates Dunn and Ball will battle for carries in the Buckeyes' backfield.
With wide receivers coach Zach Smith declaring an open competition in his position group, Devin is far from a lock to start, but the safe bet remains that he'll be on the field this fall. Thomas was reportedly impressive in practice as he redshirted through his sophomore season, while Greene could add a different dynamic with his impressive size and blocking ability. Also, don't be surprised to see Brown take some snaps as a hybrid tight end by the time his OSU career comes to a close.
Junior college transfer Corey Smith is one player in particular who could stand to benefit from an open wide receiver competition, as his position coach stated that he had as good of a fall as possible without actually playing. Spencer showed ability as a blocker but lacked production as a receiver in his first season as a starter, while Dixon may be the most game-ready skill player of the Buckeyes' true freshmen.
At the running back-wide receiver hybrid position in the OSU offense, expect to see Wilson's carries and catches increase, while an abundance of depth should aid his efforts throughout the season. Both Marshall and Samuel possess enough versatility to find their ways onto the field, while Campbell could redshirt given that the Akron native is currently only 16-years-old.
Both Heuerman and Vannett bring a plethora of experience and ability to the tight end position, but the wild card remains Baugh, who has been in and out of trouble since arriving in Columbus less than a year ago. By the end of the season, Heuerman proved to be Miller's go-to target, but don't be surprised if Baugh sneaks his way onto the field -- should he manage to keep his nose clean.
Even the Buckeyes' lone returning starter to the offensive line is playing a new position, with Decker making the switch from right tackle to left. A budding star in the Big Ten, he should provide the anchor that OSU needs in its front five, while Baldwin will provide experienced depth and Taylor will likely redshirt.
Elflein picked up crucial experience in games against Michigan and Michigan State last season and could prove to be a key cog in an otherwise largely inexperienced unit. Knox could also play minutes and isn't expected to redshirt this season, despite his status as a true freshman.
Boren picked up several key game reps early last season and will look to add to the legacy that his family has already established in Columbus. A converted defensive tackle, Price could also help provide the Buckeyes with depth at either guard spot.
Underwood was coming on strong last offseason, before a torn ACL forced him into a redshirt year. Farris has flipped back and forth between the offensive and defensive lines throughout his career, while Meyer has stated a strong desire for Dodson to get his act together and contribute for the Buckeyes. At 340 pounds, Jones is a likely redshirt candidate, despite enrolling early.
Lisle will battle with Baldwin for the right tackle spot, but many around the Woody Hayes Athletic Center have had positive things to say about the redshirt freshman's progress. A true freshman, Jones will be expected to provide depth immediately for the Buckeyes, while Trout will likely redshirt and could ultimately end up at guard by the end of his college career.