ESPN Puts You In OSU's Huddle

ESPN continued its tour of preseason practice sessions for college football with today's stop at Ohio State. Local media members were also granted a rare glimpse at what was happening at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center. We share some news and notes from the morning practice and take a stab at an unofficial depth chart with 10 days to go before the season opener with Miami (Ohio).

ESPN continued its tour of college football preseason practice settings today at Ohio State. The so-called Worldwide Leader in Sports was on hand for the morning workout at OSU's Woody Hayes Athletic Center.

The Buckeyes practiced in shells (helmets and shoulder pads) for two hours under the watchful eyes of about a half-dozen ESPN cameras as well as ABC's Gary Danielson and ESPN's Chris Spielman. ESPN is scheduled to show highlights at 1 p.m. The entire practice session was also open to local media members as well.

The early portion was devoted to special teams. The team will reconvene this afternoon for the preseason edition of the special teams scrimmage at Ohio Stadium. Presumably, the losing team will walk the three-quarters of a mile back to the WHAC from the Horseshoe. (Check the site after 6 p.m. for coverage of the kick scrimmage.)

As far as injuries, most of the team's injured players seemed to be back in action. Quarterback Justin Zwick was back doing most drills after recovering from his ankle sprain. Todd Boeckman was still taking a number of reps with the first team, though, as Zwick eased back into action.

Split end Santonio Holmes and offensive tackle Alex Boone were also back in the mix after missing the jersey scrimmage on Saturday.

It appeared that flanker Albert Dukes (shoulder) and linebacker Mike D'Andrea (knee) were working out individually on the side with designs on getting into the action sometime soon.

Safety Jamario O'Neal and defensive end Doug Worthington each missed a portion of the practice, but appeared to return and were fine at the end.

Tight end Rory Nicol and center Jimmy Cordle remained sidelined with one foot in a protective boot. As coach Jim Tressel said on Saturday, it may be several weeks before either of them return to full-go.

The sides went 11 on 11 for only about 15 minutes and, with only shells on, there was no tackling. Most of the practice was spent in position drills and breakdown sets -- inside (where they work on the run game) and perimeter (working on the pass).

The offense also worked briefly on an option game, something that was used as well in last Saturday's scrimmage.

As for some practice notables:

* Freshman DL Ryan Williams got his hand on a pair of passes from Troy Smith during one 11-on-11 session.

* Holmes appeared to be full-go, catching a deep pass during a receiver-on-DB drill.

* TE Marcel Frost made a great leaping grab of a pass from Smith. With Nicol out, Frost could get quite a look at tight end.

* Smith connected with Roy Hall on a deep pass play during another 11-on-11 drill.

* Rob Schoenhoft connected with walk-on Derek Harden on a picture perfect deep pass as well.

* Freshman DE Lawrence Wilson was drawing kudos from his teammates on his play during pass rushing drills.

* OL Doug Datish seems to be the utility man. He was seen taking reps at tackle, guard and even at center, backing up Nick Mangold with Cordle on the shelf. The impression I got was that Datish and senior walk-on John Conroy were with the starters and most everybody else spent the day with the scout team.

* Things move fairly quickly at practice, but we can take a stab at a possible depth chart based on what we saw today. OSU will release the official depth chart for the opener on Monday.


SE -- Santonio Holmes, Roy Hall or Devon Lyons

LT -- Steve Rehring, Alex Boone

LG -- Rob Sims, Kyle Mitchum

C -- Nick Mangold, Doug Datish (also backs up at tackle and guard, as needed)

RG -- T.J. Downing, John Conroy (plays either RG or LG), Ben Person

RT -- Kirk Barton, Steve Winner, Jon Skinner

TE -- Ryan Hamby, Marcel Frost

FL -- Ted Ginn Jr., Anthony Gonzalez

QB -- Justin Zwick, Todd Boeckman (Troy Smith will obviously factor after the first game)

TB -- Antonio Pittman, Erik Haw or Brandon Schnittker

FB -- Stan White Jr., Dionte Johnson


DE -- Jay Richardson, Lawrence Wilson, Ryan Williams (Doug Worthington factors in here somewhere as well, but he missed time today)

DT -- Marcus Green, David Patterson (may also still rep some at end as needed), Sian Cotton

DT -- Quinn Pitcock, Joel Penton, Nader Abdallah

DE -- Mike Kudla, Alex Barrow, Tim Schafer (Vernon Gholston remains out with an injured wrist, it appears)

WLB -- A.J. Hawk, Curtis Terry

MLB -- Anthony Schlegel, Chad Hoobler, Ryan Lukens (Mike D'Andrea would be in here, too)

SLB -- Bobby Carpenter, Marcus Freeman (things moved awfully quickly, but Austin Spitler, James Laurinaitis and John Kerr would be somewhere in the LB group as well)

CB -- Ashton Youboty, Malcolm Jenkins, Donald Washington

CB -- Tyler Everett, Michael Roberts or Brandon Underwood or Sirjo Welch (those three seemed to be rotating with different groups)

FS -- Nate Salley, Brandon Mitchell, Nick Patterson (Mitchell returns to the nickel back slot)

SS -- Donte Whitner, Curt Lukens or Jamario O'Neal (hard to gauge with O'Neal some of the time)

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