OFFENSE: Troy Smith-QB, Justin Zwick-QB, Stan White-FB, Roy Hall-WR, Tim Schafer-OT, Doug Datish-C, T.J. Downing-OG
DEFENSE: Jay Richardson-DE, David Patterson-DT, Quinn Pitcock-DT, Antonio Smith-WLB, John Kerr-WLB, Brandon Mitchell-SS

Gonzalez, Robiskie and Heisman hopeful Ginn make it so foes can’t double cover any of them. Nagurski winner James Laurinaitis and Marcus Freeman are the core of the entire D, which will only get better due to their range.

Quarterback/Defensive Tackle

Smith has been the difference between very good and greatness, but can he be replaced? Pitcock and Patterson penetrated and plugged the middle and will be missed.

WR Ted Ginn
LB James Laurinaitis

* DEPTH CHARTS were only designed as a simplistic gauge for listing players that departed and players that received the most playing experience (consistent starters). NationalChamps.net recognizes the importance of missing personnel data not listed such as redshirts, transfers, injuries, incoming recruits, back ups and alternates. Their coverage will begin with our full 2007 Preseason Preview due out this coming spring.
Returning Starters/
Key Players
QB Todd Boeckman-Jr ..
TB Antonio Pittman-Sr Chris Wells-So
WR Ted Ginn-Sr ..
WR Brian Robiskie-Jr ..
WR Anthony Gonzalez-Sr Brian Hartline-So
TE Rory Nicol-Jr Jake Ballard-So
OT Alex Boone-Jr ..
OG Steve Rehring-Jr ..
C .. ..
OG .. ..
OT Kirk Barton-Sr ..
K Aaron Pettrey-So Ryan Pretorius-Jr
DE Lawrence Wilson-Jr ..
DT .. ..
DT .. ..
DE Vernon Gholston-Jr ..
SLB Marcus Freeman-Jr ..
MLB James Laurinaitis-Jr Larry Grant-Sr
WLB Ross Homan-So Terry Curtis-Sr
CB Malcolm Jenkins-Jr ..
CB Donald Washington-So ..
SS .. ..
FS Jamario O'Neal-Jr Anderson Russell-So / Nick Patterson-Jr
P A.J. Trapasso-Jr ..

The new leadership at QB will tell much as to how far next year’s Buckeyes can go. Enter drop-back hurler Todd Boeckman, an understudy for the past few years who will be thrust into the limelight. Boeckman has the arm and pedigree to succeed, but how long he takes to properly adjust to real game pressure dictates the potential of this offensive juggernaut. RB Antonio Pittman’s prowess will ease him in – Pittman’s experience and ability should keep DLs respectful, though losing Stan White could affect the impact of the running game more than losing linemen Datish and Downing inside. But Alex Boone will have the QB’s blindside (only 14 sacks allowed by entire OL). Depth with Chris Wells (top prep RB in ’06 recruiting class) should keep defenders tired as he and Pittman rotate early and often. The star of this offense – and a potential Heisman finalist – is WR Ted Ginn. Still, he is but one of the talented Buckeyes at receiver (Gonzalez, Robiskie) who can burn foes deep as well as via short routes with YAC. Ginn also explodes on punt returns, though coaches need to find a new kick returner to keep Ginn healthy. Then there is the defense, which was supposed to need 2006 to adjust to six new starters in the back seven. Coach Tressel improved his legacy even more by fielding a D that shut most foes down for 60 minutes. Nagurski Award winner (in his first year starting) Jamie Laurinaitis leads a group of sophomores and juniors that will play with cohesion and determination to make each game a shutout, and they can hold up their end of that bargain. But the DL is the biggest team concern with Richardson, Pitcock and Patterson departing. Soon-to-be juniors Vernon Gholston and Lawrence Wilson, along with over-achieving Robert Rose (3.5 sacks in his seven tackles), look like they should tow the line on the outside, so it is only inside that needs extra attention in spring/summer practice(s). The LBs are rangy enough to be able to help in this area, though teams that spread the Buckeye defenders may find the most success running between the tackles. Kickers Pettrey and Pretorius went a combined 3-for-5 from 50+, and both are back. If ’06 is any indication, be sure not to underestimate Tressel’s ability to take supposed weaknesses and turn them into definitive strengths. The Buckeyes look to be reloading for another run as the nation’s best. Without Texas on the horizon, only trips to the Big House and Happy Valley seem to be in their way.



9-1 Youngstown State
9-8 Akron
9-15 @ Washington
9-22 Northwestern
9-29 @ Minnesota
10-6 @ Purdue
10-13 Kent State
10-20 Michigan State
10-27 @ Penn State
11-3 Wisconsin
11-10 Illinois
11-17 @ Michigan