Josh Kerr Adds Depth On O-Line

Josh Kerr, the younger brother of OSU linebacker John Kerr, is one of three freshmen scholarship offensive linemen on the roster this season. He originally signed with the University of Miami, but never played for the Hurricanes. He has already cracked the two-deep at right tackle, but could end up redshirting in the end.

When offensive lineman Josh Kerr arrived at Ohio State last winter quarter on scholarship, it was a move that flew somewhat under the radar.

The younger brother of OSU senior linebacker John Kerr originally signed with Miami (Fla.) out of Strongsville High School in 2004. But he never played for the Hurricanes and decided to look elsewhere. When Ohio State stepped up with an offer, he quickly accepted.

"I never even went to Miami," Kerr explained. "I never went down the university. I guess things didn't happen the right way and they told me I didn't have a scholarship down there anymore. I signed a letter of intent and everything and I was ready to go, but they told me I didn't have a place there anymore.

"So, Ohio State called me up and said they would offer me a scholarship. So, I accepted and came here right away."

Kerr (6-5, 283) is one of three freshmen offensive linemen on the team, joining Bryant Browning and Connor Smith. And Kerr has wasted no time in making an impact as he is currently listed on the two-deep at right tackle behind starter Kirk Barton.

It might be best in the long run for Kerr to redshirt this season, but if the coaches want him to play, he is more than ready.

"I'm actually a true freshman. I could redshirt and have five years left," Kerr said. "But, everyone wants to play. If you don't want to play there is something wrong and you're at the wrong place. So, I definitely want to play. But if I'm redshirted that means I have a great opportunity to play against some great defensive linemen like (Quinn) Pitcock on the scout team. That would be a great opportunity and would give me more experience because he's going high in the NFL draft, probably. So, it would be great both ways."

The Kerr brothers didn't attend the same high school. John is a graduate of Cleveland St. Ignatius.

"It's just how it worked out," Josh Kerr said. "Strongsville is more known for offensive linemen and I really liked the coach there. I thought he was running a good program and I thought my class was a really good class and I wanted to stay with them."

But, for one season at OSU, they will finally get a chance to play on the same team together.

"Oh yeah, it did work out perfectly," Kerr said. "It's always been a dream for me and John to play together. For one year, it's a great opportunity.

"Coming here, he told me what to expect about everything. Just little things like what to look out for and it's been a great thing to have around. I mean, not a lot of freshmen have an older brother on the team to even look up to and show them around."

And it's nice for Josh Kerr to see his brother get a chance to start at the weakside linebacker position. John Kerr has not played significantly since his freshman season at Indiana in 2002.

"Oh yeah. We've both went down some hard roads and it's great to see the ultimate coming through," Josh Kerr said. "It's just exciting for him to finally get the opportunity to play here at Ohio State."

The younger Kerr is not accustomed to playing right tackle, but he is growing into the position.

"Yeah, it's good," he said. "I barely played tackle in high school. I've been more of a guard most of my career. So, them coming and telling me to play there… it's not bad. It's an adjustment."

Kerr saw a lot of action in OSU's jersey scrimmage on Friday and looked solid. Eariler in the week, he gave a scouting report on himself as a right tackle.

"What I do better is run blocking," he said. "So, I've got to work on pass blocking. In high school, we were always running, running, running, running. I'm more of a run guy and I've got to work on my pass blocking. My pass blocking is there, it's just all getting the game back since I haven't played in two and a half years."

Kerr has adjusted to big-time college football pretty well and he credits OSU offensive line coach Jim Bollman.

"I like Coach Bolls," he said. "He is really knowledgeable about the game and he knows what he's talking about. I just started really in the spring and I'm just starting to know him, but he's a great guy and he's definitely a go-getter who always wants to win."

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