Buckeye Sports File Photo

Countdown To Kickoff: Best Buckeye Ever To Wear No. 21

As the countdown to Ohio State's season opener against Bowling Green gets closer, the Buckeye Sports staff is continuing its Best Buckeye Ever series. We stand just 21 days from kickoff, so it is time to reveal our pick for the Best Buckeye Ever to don that number.

There are just three weeks to kickoff in Ohio Stadium against Bowling Green, and we at Buckeye Sports are set to unveil our pick for the Best Buckeye Ever to wear the No. 21. 

While the No. 21 hasn't appeared on a Heisman winner, it has been worn by some pretty solid former Buckeyes. To start, we will name our second runner up on the list, former Ohio State defensive back Zack Dumas. 

Dumas was a three year starter in the Ohio State secondary from 1987-89 and while he never really put up big stats, his hitting ability is what he was best known for, specifically this hit in his final game as a Buckeye against Auburn. During his senior season, Dumas collected 75 total tackles, ranking second on the team behind only Derek Isaman. 

Our runner up at No. 21 in Ohio State history is punter B.J. Sander. While he was the Buckeyes punter for just one full season, he made the most of it, collecting OSU's only Ray Guy Award, given annually to the best punter in the country. Sander was a first team all-Big Ten selection in 2003 and his stellar senior season led to him being selected in the third round of the 2004 NFL Draft by the Green Bay Packers. Sander didn't last long in the NFL however, as he was released by the Packers before the 2006 season. 

Our pick as the Best Buckeye Ever to wear No. 21 at Ohio State goes to former safety Nate Salley. Like Dumas, Salley was a three year starter in the Buckeye secondary from 2003-05 and a captain as a senior. 

A national champion as a freshman, Salley was one of many Buckeyes that never lost a bowl game. During his time in Columbus, Ohio State won three Fiesta Bowls and the 2004 Alamo Bowl. Salley's best statistical season came in 2003, when he recorded 77 total tackles and five pass breakups as a true sophomore and first year starter. During his final campaign at Ohio State, Salley earned first team all-Big Ten honors and was drafted in the fourth round by the Carolina Panthers where he spent three seasons. 

The full list of No. 21's at Ohio State can be seen below. Agree with our list? Make sure to weigh in on our premium message boards. 

Andrulis, Frank..........................1970

Benis, Michael K. .....................1960

Burton, Arthur F...................1967-69

Campbell, Parris...................2014-15

Carlin, Earl V........................1939-40

Cook, Donald ........................... 1936

Delaney, Kevin ......................... 1985

Dumas, Zach .......................1986-89

Forte, Trevon............................ 2015

Gentry, Tyson .......................... 2004

Johnson, Kenneth E..................1961

Johnson, Ricky.............. 1977-78, 80

Jones, Tim................................ 1985

Kern, Carl ............................ 1972-73

Maloney, Robert........................1937

McDaniel, Devlin...................... 2013

Midlam, Max.........................1974-76

Moore, C.J................................ 1999

Parnell, Chris...........................2000

Patillo, Tim............................1991-94

Perini, Pete E....................... 1947-48

Peterson, William J. ................. 1952

Plank, Ernest V. .........................1943

Richardson, Kevin ...............1982-84

Russell, Anderson ........2006-08-09

Russell, Jake.............................2011

Salley, Nate ..................2002-04-05

Samuels, James........................1957

Sander, B.J. .........................1999-03

Sanders, Charlie ...........1995, 97-98

Sheehee, Greg....................1993-94

Thomas, Earl .......................1934-35

Whinnery, Glenn....................... 1933

Wood, Jamie ................... 2010-11-12


Buckeye Sports Top Stories