A year ago Ohio State, coming off a national championship, managed to keep all of its underclassmen from leaving early. A year later it has been quite a different story. Safety Tyvis Powell is the latest underclassmen to declare his intentions to enter the 2016 NFL Draft with a year of eligibility remaining at Ohio State.
Powell was a three-year starter for Ohio State and he has had quite an impact on the success of the program with some key plays along the way. Powell graduated in December, doing so in three and a half years. He also leaves a year early despite his evaluation from the NFL Draft advisory board suggesting he will not be likely to be chosen in the first two rounds of the draft in the spring.
“It doesn’t matter what round it is,” Powell said, according to The Columbus Dispatch. “When I get there, I just want to leave a mark. I’ve never been the top person (coming in) anyway. I’ve always had to work for what I had. It doesn’t matter if it’s first round or second round. It’s all about what you do when you get there. With my work ethic, I’m going to work as hard as I can to stay as long as I can.”
Powell joins defensive end Joey Bosa, running back Ezekiel Elliott, quarterback Cardale Jones and linebacker Darron Lee as Ohio State players leaving the school early for a chance at the NFL. There could be mopre to come as well, with safety Vonn Bell, cornerback Eli Apple and wide receiver Jalin Marshall all reportedly contemplating their futures.
Ohio State’s depth is already taking some dings in 2016 with these early departures, and that could take them down a peg when it comes to predicting who the top team in the Big Ten East will be in the fall. Michigan appears to be on the rise under Jim Harbaugh and certainly has momentum going into the offseason with a blowout of Florida, but Ohio State has recruited exceptionally well under Urban Meyer and the Buckeyes will continue to fill their holes with some good quality players as a result.