Probably since he can remember, it has been Jeremiah “Boogie” Knight’s dream to play college football for Ohio State. Growing up in the Buckeye State, Knight has been surrounded by OSU football his entire life.
Knight, a running back out of Jefferson, Ohio, will begin to live out his fantasy as an Ohio State football player when he joins the team this summer as a preferred walk-on.
“Since I was little that was my dream,” Knight told Scout of playing for OSU. “So, I followed it and I’m really excited about it.”
As a preferred walk-on, Knight is guaranteed a spot on the 105-man roster that includes 85 scholarship players. Interestingly, he was moments away from not being a Buckeye, though.
“I was days or minutes from committing to Marshall,” Knight explained. “I had a scholarship offer from Marshall and I was about to commit there. (Ohio State assistant director of player personnel Eron) Hodges, he hit me up. Out of nowhere he just followed me on Twitter. (The Ohio State Football Twitter) account did first and told me to message him and I did. Then he called me, and was saying how he loved my film – he had just found it that day. He was just saying it was great and he’d really love for me to come down. Then I came on a visit.”
From there, it was a done deal.
A day after Knight announced via Twitter that he committed to Ohio State, he received a message from a former Buckeye who was once in his position.
“When I came in, their preferred walk-on that was a team captain was Joe Burger,” Knight said. “He followed me on Twitter. He shouted me out on Twitter and was like, ‘Keep the tradition going.’ He said it was a great experience.”
Burger completed his Ohio State career last season as a fifth-year senior. The Cincinnati native, who received a scholarship prior to his final season at OSU, earned playing time on defense at linebacker and was a significant contributor on special teams throughout his time as a Buckeye.
“I think it’s more of a sense of pride,” Burger told Scout of what his message to Knight means. “There’s a certain sense of pride in a walk-on that’s able to play valuable minutes and plays for the team. So, I think that’s kind of what I was referring to, valuable walk-ons that actively contribute to the team being better because of you.”
Knight, who will play a new position at Ohio State, has a few qualities the Buckeyes like.
“They said I’m really twitchy and quick,” the 5-10, 200-pounder said. “They really like my explosiveness and quickness. I am a running back, but I’m going to go to slot – that’s what they said. I’m like 198, 200. They’re trying to get me to 210, but they said that shouldn’t be a problem. My strength is good and everything. Just work on my top-end speed and just go through the program and get better every day.”
Knight’s shiftiness is a trait he’s apparently always had because that is how he landed the nickname “Boogie.”
“When I was little, I would always be running around and juking,” he said. “Just running and messing around. I never walked. My mom said I always ran. So that’s where it came from.”
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