Lyons Excited to Begin Buckeye Career

Freshman wide receiver Devon Lyons recently showed what he could do with a fine performance in the Big 33 game, but now the time has come to take it to the college gridiron. The way things sound, Lyons is definitely ready to go.

Just like he had been all day for Photo Day at Ohio Stadium on Wednesday, Devon Lyons was standing around sporting a big grin. He had been holding a conversation with an interested gentleman for the few minutes prior.

The gentleman received a light tap on his shoulder upon exchanging a handshake with Lyons.

"I hope you're not one of them Pittsburgh guys," said a familiar voice.

Quickly the gentleman turned around, and fittingly, the voice spun around behind Lyons, playfully slapping him on the back of the head. Popping out from behind Lyons was Ted Ginn Jr. while giving a wink to the gentleman.

An Ohio boy talking about "them" Pittsburgh guys just served as a reminder that Lyons definitely wasn't in Pennsylvania any more, Toto.

The playful exchange concluded only after Ginn made certain he reminded Lyons of a recent performance at the Big 33 All Star game, where Ginn held Lyons without a catch the entire second half.

The easy-going and joking nature serves as a good indication of just how calm and relaxed a demeanor this 6-4 freshman receiver has even in the face of an extremely tough challenge.

For most 17-year olds, even beginning college away from home is a tough transition, let alone adding in playing college football and dealing with hundreds of media members.

Devon Lyons isn't your typical 17-year old.

"I'm not nervous at all," he said. "I love this atmosphere a lot. I feel right at home."

Lyons, the Woodland Hills High School graduate who turns 18 on September 7th, has always done things just a little quicker and a little better than most.

Playing football since he was 5 years old, Lyons always stood out to friends and family as a playmaker. That was evidenced by his senior year in high school where 14 of his 23 receptions wound up in the end-zone for touchdowns.

His father, Wesley, has the utmost confidence in Devon to succeed.

"This really isn't a big deal to him," the elder Lyons said of his son's adjustment to college ball. "This is still football, just played at a higher level. It's the same game he's played since he was a kid."

It's also not like he hasn't time to get acclimated, either.

After all, Lyons has been in Columbus all summer long working out along with fellow teammates. Lyons has quickly developed a bond with several other players.

"Teddy and I have had a while to get to know one another," Lyons said. "I got to know a lot of the freshmen this summer. It's already helped me out a lot, like today for instance in a running drill that we did."

Ginn's friendship hasn't been the only influential thing to Lyons. He's quite impressed with his game too.

For instance, Lyons took note of Ginn's cover skills in the Big 33 game. The one where the Ohio team put Ginn on Lyons to cover the entire second half and Lyons was unable to catch a pass on Ginn.

"Teddy is a great player, that's for sure," Lyons said.

"As far as the game, I can't really say too much because he's my teammate now," Lyons added with a big smile. "But, let's just say for now that I didn't have any passes thrown my way."

The fact that Lyons didn't catch a pass in the entire second half says more for Ginn's talent than any lacking ability for Lyons. After all, Lyons racked up nearly 130 yards receiving in the first half before Ginn began covering him.

This is also the same Lyons that turned down scholarship offers from Michigan, Miami, Oklahoma, and most any other notable program in the nation -- just to be a Buckeye.

The receiver position, according to some, might not have even been his best position.

In high school, Lyons was a safety first and foremost. Last season, Lyons recorded 52 tackles and four interceptions. The Insiders ranked Lyons as the 17th best receiver in the nation, a ranking that may have been significantly higher if Lyons played receiver earlier or more often in high school.

He has quickly impressed many of the upper classmen who have worked out with him this summer. In fact, there has even been a buzz created about how impressive Lyons is with catching the football.

Despite the hype, Lyons has no expectations for how much -- or even if -- he will play this season. But he's most certainly hoping to ultimately start.

"I think that it's very possible," he said. "If I work hard and play the way I know how, I think anything is possible."

It won't be long before Ohio State fans take quite a liking to him.

"They (the fans) can expect a class individual and a great person," Lyons said of himself. "I've got a great attitude, a great work ethic, and I'm going to do everything it takes to excel at the next level."

Lyons glanced up at the goal post in the south end zone, almost envisioning he will be there quite often.

"This is definitely a great atmosphere," he said with a big sigh of relief.

Lyons isn't in Pittsburgh anymore, he's at Ohio State.

He's most definitely arrived.


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