Ohio State Has Big Weakness Heading Into 2020, Says ESPN
Ohio State has a big weakness heading into 2020, says ESPN.
The Buckeyes are fresh off a reasonably successful 2019 campaign. They made it to the College Football Playoff as a two-seed and arguably should have been the one-seed.
Although the team ended up losing to Clemson before making it to the National Championship Game, the defeat came in controversial fashion.
A lot of people thought that, if not for some bad calls, Ohio State would have emerged victorious.
In 2020, quarterback Justin Fields figures to be an early frontrunner for the Heisman and the Buckeyes return a lot of starters.
Barring some catastrophic preseason injury, Ohio State figures to be in the top two or three in every poll at the start of next season.
This week, ESPN college football insider Mark Schlarbach took a closer look at what big issues each top program will have to contend with next season.
In the case Ohio State, he identified the defense as an area to keep an eye on.
“The Buckeyes made it to the College Football Playoff with a completely balanced team on offense and defense,” he wrote.
“The offense has quite a few pieces coming back in 2020, including quarterback Justin Fields, but the defense is where there are some big holes that need to be filled.
“Defensive coordinator Jeff Hafley was hired away by Boston College, and defensive end Chase Young, defensive tackle Davon Hamilton, linebacker Malik Harrison, cornerbacks Jeff Okudah and Damon Arnette, as well as safety Jordan Fuller, are all gone, along with a few others,” he continued.
“That is a lot to lose, especially with the rise in nearly every stat since Hafley was hired.
“If that unit can continue to progress, or at least not regress, Ohio State could have another playoff appearance.”
With the return of Kerry Coombs, some of the concerns regarding the defensive side of the ball should be somewhat dealt with.
Is it a lock that Ohio State surpasses the heights the program reached in 2019? Probably not.
But is there a good chance it will happen? Absolutely.
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