Smashing Debuts: Patterson, Youboty

Five true freshmen debut against Washington, others wait to see if they'll get in against San Diego State. Here, David Patterson discusses his first sack as a Buckeye.

Two Ohio State freshmen admitted that appearing in the team's season opener with Washington was an overwhelming experience. Defensive tackle David Patterson and cornerback Ashton Youboty were among five true freshmen who saw action in the team's 28-9 win over the Huskies.

Patterson made his first big play as a Buckeye when he sacked UW quarterback Cody Pickett inside the final minute.

But Patterson, a Warrensville Heights, Ohio, product, could not enjoy his moment in the spotlight.

"I kind of regurgitated a little -- I threw up," he said.

Patterson did not see action until late in the contest. But he was glad to get a chance to show what he can do.

"At first, before the game, I was really nervous," he said. "Then, the game started and I just started watching our guys on the defensive line. I was watching Will and Tim and Simon and Darrion. They really got it going. That's when I wanted to get out there. They were getting me pumped up.

"Will and Darrion would come over and say, `Are you ready?' They told me that if I make a mistake not to worry and just go hard. They've been preparing me all the way."

Patterson had a feeling he would get into the game. As the game wound down, he sensed his time was coming.

"Right before I got in, all of the freshmen were like, `Dave, if you get in, you've got to do something.' They wanted me to get a sack for the freshmen," he said.

Everybody got their wish as Patterson and fellow tackle Marcus Green executed a textbook stunt, freeing Patterson to go after Pickett. He sacked the All-American candidate for a 12-yard loss.

"The stunt went perfect," Patterson said. "I think Marcus got the attention of the tackle and there was no one around the outside. I just took off at him. I probably should have gone up field with my shoulder. Luckily, I got his feet and he went down. It was exactly the way Coach (Jim) Heacock talks about every day."

Patterson said the play will help him in the future.

"That lets me know I can perform on this level," he said. "I can be comfortable on the field. I am the only freshman playing on the defensive line. The other guys are pumping me up and encouraging me."

Well Worth It

Youboty, a native of Houston, made a decision last December to graduate from Klein High School a semester early and enroll at OSU in January. That allowed him to go through winter conditioning and spring drills with the team. All of that hard work paid off as Youboty saw as much action as any of the true freshmen in the opener.

He worked as the team's fourth cornerback, behind starters Chris Gamble and Dustin Fox and reserve E.J. Underwood. Youboty finished the night with three solo tackles.

"I was especially happy to get out there and see how it feels," Youboty said. "I practice every day against Michael Jenkins and Drew Carter, but this was a new experience. I went against (UW's) Reggie Williams. I had faced some good receivers in my district back in Texas, but he was at another level.

"I felt like just from the experience I can only get better."

Youboty talked about sitting behind Gamble this season.

"There is a lot of talent out here and he's really good," Youboty said. "I'm trying to get up to his level by next year."

Youboty had played in front of 55,000 at Ohio Stadium for the spring game. But this experience was different, he said.

"I thought I knew what to expect after the spring game," he said. "But this was a whole another level with 105,000 people. It was loud. I was just happy to be out there. I was ready to go."

Youboty admitted he was glad he made the decision to enroll early.

"It was worthwhile," he said. "I figured that out after spring ball, when I reached No. 2 on the depth chart. So I guess I already knew it. But this reinforced it.

"I had a lot of my friends calling me before the game. I think I can only go up from here."

A Fresh(man) Look

Joining Patterson and Youboty on the field for the first time were true freshman Ira Guilford, a tailback; Louis Irizarry, a tight end; and Donte Whitner, a safety.

OSU's game report also listed wide receiver Tony Gonzalez and Devin Jordan as playing, but they did not.

Other true freshmen on the fence regarding playing time this year include offensive lineman Kirk Barton, defensive end Marcel Frost, wide receiver Dareus Hiley, linebacker/defensive back Curt Lukens, defensive lineman Brandon Maupin; and linebacker Reggie Smith. If none of these players see action this week against San Diego State, it is likely they will be redshirting this year.

Redshirt freshmen seeing their first game action included quarterbacks Justin Zwick and Troy Smith; wide receivers Roy Hall and Santonio Holmes; defensive back Michael Roberts; offensive linemen Doug Datish and T.J. Downing; tight end Stan White Jr.; and defensive linemen Quinn Pitcock, Jay Richardson and Joel Penton. Junior running back Roshawn Parker also debuted.

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