Ryan Ginn: I’m not sure he was the best player on the field, but redshirt freshman quarterback J.T. Barrett kept his composure and got the job done in the end. He led the Buckeyes to touchdowns on each of their final three drives and didn’t have an incompletion in the second half, going 4 for 4 for 130 yards and a pair of touchdowns. His debut game wasn’t without flaws – most notably a bad interception in the red zone – but he shook off the nerves and kicked off the season with a win.
Matthew Hager: It would be hard to pick someone other than J.T. Barrett. Aside from his interception in the red zone in the first half, Barrett was solid. Only three incompletions and 276 yards of total offense from a redshirt freshman quarterback is nothing to sneeze at. Add in his momentum-shifting 80-yard touchdown pass to Devin Smith in the third quarter and Barrett passed his first collegiate test with flying colors.
Marcus Hartman: The defense had its share of struggles on the day, but Darron Lee was often one of the bright spots. A heady player who made seven tackles in his first career start, he also came up with a crucial scoop-and-score in the third quarter to put the Buckeyes on top. Lee also had a pair of tackles for loss and was credited with a QB hurry. He displayed the potential to improve down the line and be an asset on a young defense.
Jeff Svoboda: I'm going to have to go with Darron Lee. The redshirt freshman made his first start for the Buckeyes and changed the game with his athletic 61-yard fumble return score that thwarted a Navy drive early in the second half. On the day, Lee finished with seven tackles, including two for loss, and a QB hurry. Facing a team that's difficult to prepare for, Lee more than acquitted himself well. It wasn't a perfect performance but it was a good one for the New Albany, Ohio, native, who figures to be a key part of the defense for the rest of the season.
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