2024 Offensive Line Discussion

Discussion in 'Football Talk' started by OSUBasketballJunkie, Dec 31, 2023.

  1. OSUBasketballJunkie

    OSUBasketballJunkie Proud to be a Buckeye Staff Member

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  2. OSUBasketballJunkie

    OSUBasketballJunkie Proud to be a Buckeye Staff Member

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  3. TexasBuckeye

    TexasBuckeye Well-Known Member

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    Terminate Frye.
    Go Bucks
     
  4. OSUBasketballJunkie

    OSUBasketballJunkie Proud to be a Buckeye Staff Member

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  5. OSUBasketballJunkie

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    OFFENSIVE LINEMEN (17)
    Returning Starters: Josh Simmons, Donovan Jackson, Carson Hinzman, Josh Fryar
    Other Returners: Luke Montgomery, Tegra Tshabola, Enokk Vimahi, Zen Michalski, George Fitzpatrick, Joshua Padilla, Austin Siereveld, Miles Walker
    Newcomers: Seth McLaughlin (Transfer), Deontae Armstrong (Freshman), Devontae Armstrong (Freshman), Ian Moore (Freshman), Gabe VanSickle (Freshman)
    Departures: Matt Jones, Victor Cutler, Jakob James, Trey Leroux

    Even with four of last season’s primary starters returning, the offensive line remains Ohio State’s biggest question mark for the 2024 season after its struggles during the regular season ballooned into a wholly ineffective performance in the Cotton Bowl.

    While Jackson and Simmons should remain starters, McLaughlin likely replaces Hinzman as Ohio State’s starting center. Fryar could theoretically move inside to right guard to replace Jones, where Tshabola and Hinzman could also be candidates to start, while Montgomery should push for a starting job at offensive tackle. Still, Ohio State would benefit from adding another plug-and-play starter on the line if it can land another upgrade from the transfer portal.

    Ohio State’s overall scholarship numbers along the offensive line are right where the Buckeyes want them. All of the players listed above should factor somewhere into the two-deep, as could any of the other returners, while Moore and the Armstrong twins could also push for backup jobs as early enrollees. But it’s not yet certain entering the spring whether the Buckeyes’ current roster includes the full starting five they need to achieve their championship goals this year.
     
  6. OSUBasketballJunkie

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  7. TexasBuckeye

    TexasBuckeye Well-Known Member

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    O-Line = 800# gorilla in the room.
    Go Bucks
     
  8. OSUBasketballJunkie

    OSUBasketballJunkie Proud to be a Buckeye Staff Member

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    LEFT TACKLE
    1. Josh Simmons
    2. Zen Michalski
    3. George Fitzpatrick

    LEFT GUARD
    1. Donovan Jackson
    2. Austin Siereveld
    3. Devontae Armstrong

    CENTER
    1. Seth McLaughlin
    2. Carson Hinzman
    3. Joshua Padilla

    RIGHT GUARD
    1. Josh Fryar
    2. Enokk Vimahi
    3. Toby Wilson

    RIGHT TACKLE
    1. Luke Montgomery
    2. Tegra Tshabola
    3. Ian Moore

    Jackson is the only lock to remain a starter on Ohio State’s offensive line following the unit’s 2023 struggles, though Simmons is the clear favorite to remain the starting left tackle given that Ohio State has not yet added a transfer offensive tackle. McLaughlin is expected to be the starting center after holding that role at Alabama for the past two seasons.

    The right side of the offensive line is the biggest question mark on Ohio State’s entire depth chart. Fryar started all 13 games at right tackle in 2023, but his struggles in pass protection should open that position back up for competition.

    Montgomery and Tshabola are the likeliest candidates among returning offensive linemen to emerge as new starters; if one of them can lock down the right tackle job (or if Ohio State adds a transfer offensive tackle in the post-spring window), that could precipitate a move inside for Fryar, who has experience playing guard and a skill set seemingly better suited for playing that role.

    Tshabola and Montgomery could also be candidates to start at right guard, as could Hinzman and Vimahi, though Hinzman will have to prove himself all over again this offseason after getting benched for the Cotton Bowl while Vimahi’s performance against Missouri didn’t inspire much confidence in his starting potential.
     
  9. OSUBasketballJunkie

    OSUBasketballJunkie Proud to be a Buckeye Staff Member

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  10. OSUBasketballJunkie

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    • Ohio State will take a chance to evaluate its offensive line in the spring. "A fresh set of eyes, 'What do you see?' And he sees some talent. ... We're gonna have a really competitive spring and see if we have enough."
     
  11. OSUBasketballJunkie

    OSUBasketballJunkie Proud to be a Buckeye Staff Member

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    ON OHIO STATE'S OFFENSIVE LINE
    • Day said Ohio State's offense performs well when it can be efficient in running between the tackles and recording explosive plays in the passing game. "When we are at our best, we have had a combination of those two things."
    • "Seth McLaughlin is a great addition to the room."
    • "Donovan Jackson should be one of the best guards in the country."
    • "You are not gonna see a more talented player than Josh Simmons."
    • Day said Josh Fryar has "swing ability" to play tackle and guard. He said Luke Montgomery will get some reps at guard this spring.
     
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  14. OSUBasketballJunkie

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    Offensive Line
    LT: Josh Simmons
    LG: Donovan Jackson
    C: Seth McLaughlin
    RG: Josh Fryar
    RT: Luke Montgomery OR Tegra Tshabola

    OT Depth: Zen Michalski, George Fitzpatrick, Ian Moore
    IOL Depth: Carson Hinzman, Austin Siereveld, Joshua Padilla, Enokk Vimahi

    The biggest question mark heading into the 2024 season for Ohio State is far and away the offensive line. The Buckeyes’ front was not up to par in 2023, and was one of the biggest reasons why the program was unable to reach its ultimate goals. With that in mind, all five of the players who started among that group are returning, but that doesn’t mean all of them are remaining atop the depth chart or playing the same position this time around.

    Three spots on the offensive line are more or less set, all of which are on the left side. Josh Simmons, a former San Diego State transfer, had some early struggles with the rise in competition in Columbus, but was one of Ohio State’s best offensive linemen by season’s end, and can really take the next step this season if he can cut down on the penalties. Former five-star Donovan Jackson will maintain his spot at left guard despite some inconsistencies, while Alabama transfer Seth McLaughlin comes in to take over at center.

    Which brings us to the question marks: right guard and right tackle. We can assume that Josh Fryar will earn one of those two spots, with a move back to his more natural position at right guard the most likely outcome after serving as the team’s starting right tackle last season. If that is in fact the case, then the largest position battle of all this offseason will be at right tackle, with at least two but potentially more players competing for the job.

    That battle figures to be either Luke Montgomery or Tegra Tshabola’s to lose. Montgomery was a four-star prospect and a top-100 overall player in the 2023 class, and the 6-foot-4, 302-pound sophomore is in prime position to make a run at the starting job. Tshabola, who was just outside the top-100 on the 247Sports Composite but was a top-40 player overall by 247Sports’ own rankings in 2022, will be his biggest competition. Tshabola is potentially better suited as a guard, but at 6-foot-6, 322 pounds was originally recruited as a tackle, and that is where Ohio State’s current need exists.

    Of course, the Buckeyes could very well look to the transfer portal in the spring window to fill that right tackle spot, much like they did with Simmons last offseason. Other guys on the roster among potential tackles include Zen Michalski, George Fitzpatrick and incoming freshman Ian Moore.
     
  15. OSUBasketballJunkie

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  17. OSUBasketballJunkie

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    RIGHT GUARD/RIGHT TACKLE
    No position battle carries more importance this spring than that which will take place on the right side of the offensive line. The biggest question mark on Ohio State’s roster as it is currently constructed is whether the Buckeyes have the players they need at right guard and right tackle, so how the potential starters at those positions perform this spring will determine how urgently the Buckeyes need to pursue offensive line help in the post-spring transfer window.

    While Josh Fryar is a returning starter at right tackle, he had too many lapses in pass protection last season for the Buckeyes to hand him the starting job for 2024 simply. He could still end up winning the battle for the job, but he’s expected to face competition from Luke Montgomery and Tegra Tshabola this spring.

    All three of those players could also be candidates to fill the vacant starting job at right guard following the departure of Matt Jones. Enokk Vimahi could also factor into that competition – though he’ll need to be much better this spring than he was in the Cotton Bowl if he’s going to be a viable starting candidate – as could last year’s starting center Carson Hinzman, who has been displaced from that job with the addition of McLaughlin.

    “Josh has a little bit of a swing capability there. So he's going to be on the right side right now. And we're going to take a look to see what the right combination will be on the right side now that we lost Matt,” Ryan Day said earlier this month when asked about the possibility of Fryar moving to guard. “He's going to play tackle, he's going to play a little bit of guard, and we'll kind of see how that shakes out as the spring goes on.”
     
  18. OSUBasketballJunkie

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    MONTGOMERY STARTS AT RIGHT GUARD
    Perhaps the biggest personnel question entering spring practices is who will start on the right side of Ohio State’s offensive line this year. For at least the start of Tuesday’s opening practice, Luke Montgomery appeared to be first in line to start alongside Josh Fryar on the right side – though maybe not at the positions you’d expect.

    Montgomery opened spring as the first-team right guard while Fryar took the first-team reps at right tackle, the position he started at last year. Returning starters Josh Simmons, Donovan Jackson and Carson Hinzman took the first-team reps at left tackle, left guard and center.

    Transfer center Seth McLaughlin began the spring repping with the second-team offensive line at center, though there’s a good chance he’ll supplant Hinzman in the starting lineup once he gets some Ohio State practices under his belt. The rest of the second-team offensive line consisted of Zen Michalski at left tackle, Austin Siereveld at left guard, Enokk Vimahi at right guard and Tegra Tshabola at right tackle.
     
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