One of the most important positions on the Ohio State Buckeyes’ roster is backup quarterback.
As Kenny Guiton proved last year, the Buckeyes’s No. 2 signal caller can be called upon at any time and possibly be forced to win the game.
Quarterback Braxton Miller has been plagued by multiple nagging injuring over the past two seasons. Guiton played in 15 games during that time and started two contests. Guiton was a senior, though. And Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer has been searching for a new backup.
Meyer may have found found one.
Redshirt freshman J.T. Barrett has taken a “slight lead” in the competition, according to The Columbus Dispatch‘s Tim May.
“And that’s because of his (taking advantage of his) opportunities,” Meyer told May.
It was only a matter of time before Barrett moved up the depth chart. Barrett was a highly regarded four-star recruit in the 2013 class. Sophomore Cardale Jones, on the other hand, wasn’t recruited to Columbus by Urban Meyer and his staff.
It simply took the younger signal caller time to develop and gain confidence.
“He was always kind of a quiet guy,” Meyer said. “He’s starting to act like a quarterback.”
The Buckeyes may need Barrett to mature quickly. Miller is still recovering from offseason shoulder surgery. Meyer has repeatedly stated his starting quarterback is “right on schedule” in his recovery, but Barrett needs to be ready in case he has to play against the Navy Midshipmen or Virginia Tech Hokies in weeks one and two.
Miller’s status will become more clear at the start of the week.
“He scrimmaged today; just limited throws is where we’re at right now,” Meyer said. “We’re expecting Monday to take a big step.”
One of the most consistent pieces of Wisconsin’s passing attack, such as it is, will be on the shelf for the foreseeable future.
A UW official confirmed to madison.com that Austin Traylor sustained a right-arm injury in Saturday’s loss to Iowa. As a result, the tight end will be sidelined for the rather broad period of 4-8 weeks.
At best, Traylor could return for the Nov. 7 game against Maryland after missing contests with Nebraska, Purdue, Illinois and Rutgers. At worst, he’d miss the remainder of the regular season, but could return for a bowl game, and perhaps the Big Ten championship game if the Badgers were to earn another berth.
Because he’s already played in five games this season, Traylor would not be eligible for a medical hardship waiver if he were to miss the remainder of the year.
Traylor is tied for the team lead in receiving touchdowns with three while his 15.6 yards per reception is tops on the team. He’s third in receiving yards with 156 and tied for fourth with 10 receptions.
With each passing day, it appears Miami won’t be able to avoid one of the most talented and productive running backs in the country.
Thursday, Dalvin Cook returned to practice for the first time this week. Cook suffered a hamstring injury in the first quarter of Florida State’s win over Wake Forest this past Saturday, and had spent the previous two days of practice riding a bicycle while the rest of his teammates prepped for the in-state and conference rivalry game against The U this Saturday.
The Palm Beach Post wrote that Cook showed “no signs” of the hamstring injury that had some worried about his availability in Week 6.
Head coach Jimbo Fisher, who said Wednesday he doesn’t “ever count Dalvin out” because of his healing ability, will meet with reporters later this evening and could address Cook’s status for the weekend then. Or, he could play to keep the Hurricanes guessing, even as most assume the All-ACC back will be on the field.
Cook is far and away FSU’s leading rusher, with his 142.5 yards per game good for eight in the country and his six rushing touchdowns tied for 20th.