First-year head coach Ryan Day is heading into his first Spring Game this Saturday with a few question marks. One of those question marks is who will be the vocal leaders on this team? In seasons past players like Billy Price, Isaiah Prince, J.T. Barrett, and Terry McLaurin were the guys to lift the Buckeyes up after emotional victories and tough losses. Who could be that next great leader this season?
Linebacker Malik Harrison
By far Harrison’s best season as a Buckeye was last season. Harrison recorded 81 total tackles and 55 of them were solo tackles. A lot that he does on the field does not show up in the stat line. Harrison flies all around the football field and is really good in coverage. Harrison showed a lot of emotion during the final three games of the 2018 season. Can Harrison be that outspoken leader for Ryan Day and the Buckeyes?
Safety Jordan Fuller
We know what Fuller can do on the field as he was one the most productive players on the defense last fall. Fuller is an athletic safety that can stop the run and is very productive when defending the pass. Last season Fuller recorded 81 tackles, 61 of them solo and one interception. The senior from New Jersey is expected to be a ball hawk in coverage for the Buckeyes in 2019. Fuller could very well be that emotional leader for the Ohio State secondary.
Wide Receiver K.J. Hill
Just like in 2018 the strength of the Ohio State offense is the wide receivers unit. K.J. Hill is only 48 receptions away from breaking David Boston’s career record at 191. Hill will lead the way in what is an already explosive receiver unit with Austin Mack, Binjimen Victor, Chris Olave and Garrett Wilson. In fact, it would not be surprising if Hill was elected as a captain in 2019. The question is can Hill be the leader Terry McLaurin was last season?
Quarterbacks Justin Fields and Matthew Baldwin
Another unknown question right now is at the quarterback position. The speculation is that Justin Fields will be the starter this fall. As of right now that question is unanswered. Spring practice has moved along and head coach Ryan Day has noted that both Baldwin and Fields have taken snaps with the first team offense. This means the winner of the competition could have a chance to be a leader like J.T. Barrett was during his career in the scarlet and gray.