News broke May 8 that the American Football Coaches Association is set to propose a rule to the NCAA that would allow redshirts to play in a maximum of four games per season, including bowl games. This proposal comes in the wake of players such as Christian McCaffery and Leonard Fournette deciding to sit out their bowl games to prepare for their upcoming NFL careers.
While the rule is a long way from being passed or even considered at this point, we are going to look at three Buckeyes in the 2017 class that could benefit from this rule if it is passed before the season starts.
1. Brendon White, wide receiver
The Olentangy native has been practicing with the Buckeyes since December after graduating early from high school and would be a prime candidate to get playing time in a few games this season. The downside for White is the Buckeyes currently have a plethora of wide receivers in Zach Smith's unit and playing time at the position will likely be scarce. That said, White is a versatile player having played defensive back and quarterback in high school in addition to wide receiver. While he might not catch a pass this season, he could be in the mix for playing time on special teams and should an OSU wide receiver decide to sit out a bowl game or suffer an injury, White could perhaps crack the lineup late in the season.
2. Josh Myers, offensive line
As we have seen in recent years, the Ohio State reserve linemen have not exactly lived up to expectations. Should Demetrius Knox and the likes of Matt Burrell, Gavin Cupp, etc., continue to struggle, it could open the door for someone like Myers to see the field. The Buckeyes have seen three linemen (Kyle Trout, Evan Lisle, Tyler Gerald) leave the program since January, something that could benefit a guy like Myers who comes in highly recruited. The downside for Myers is the Buckeyes return four out of five starters up front from a season ago. However, should a situation like last year's Fiesta Bowl occur, Myers could be considered for some late playing time.
3. Amir Riep, defensive back
We could have gone with a few young Ohio State defensive backs here, but we will go with Riep for a few reasons. Riep is the only defensive back in the 2017 class to not early enroll, which could put him behind the likes of Jeffrey Okudah, Isaiah Pryor and Marcus Williamson. While its unlikely any of them see significant time on defense, it is likely that trio will play on special teams for Urban Meyer. Riep is a candidate to play on special teams as a freshman as well, but only if there is room for him. Should this rule get passed, Riep would likely see time on special teams and maybe even defense in a blowout or a bowl game should someone decide to sit out a postseason contest.