The Locker Room
Go beyond the shows!Here in The Fan Locker Room you'll get insight and commentary from your favorite Fan personalities and reporters. Everything is game here, so you're guaranteed to find out what 97.1 The Fan thinks.
The voice of OSU Women's basketball Marty Bannister hosts the rest of the voices of Big Ten Women's basketball to preview the upcoming Big Ten Women's basketball tournament. Who's the favorite in the tournment? Who are the sleepers? And who do the voices of the Big Ten believe will be the conference's player and coach of the year? The women's Big Ten Tournament begins Wednesday March 4th at Sears Centre Arena in Hoffman Estates, Illinois.
CBJ RW Corey Tropp doesn't score often, he only has 1 goal all of this season, but this called off goal might be one of the greatest of all time....
Jeff Heuerman 6'5" 254 pounds
- 26 reps on the bench press
- second best performance on the bench of this year's tight ends
- did not participate in other testing (40-yard dash, three-cone, etc.) as he's recovering from an ankle injury
- Cleveland.com suggests the Browns have a real need at tight end that Heuerman could fill
Devin Smith 6'0", 196 pounds
- 4.42 seconds on the 40-yard dash
- 10 reps on the bench press
- 39.0" vertical jump
- 122.0" broad jump
- 4.15 second 20-yard shuttle
- NFL.com compared him to DeSean Jackson
- reporters who cover the Bengals, Browns, Chargers, Bears, and 49ers have all written about Smith in conjunction with their teams
Michael Bennett 6'2", 293 pounds
- did not participate in testing because he's still recovering from a groin injury
- was widely cited as one of the most impressive at the podium during media interviews
- the Detroit Lions seemed especially interested in the defensive lineman
Doran Grant 5'10", 200 pounds
- 4.44 seconds on the 40-yard dash
- tied for third best time on the 40-yard dash of this year's corners
- 21 reps on the bench press
- second best performance on the bench of this year's corners
- 33.0" vertical jump
- 116.0" broad jump
- teams linked to Grant have included the Patriots, Broncos, Steelers, and we know he interviewed with the 49ers
Ohio State's Pro Day is March 13th.
Lettuce take a moment to enjoy the high-fiber workout of Nick Foligno and Ryan Johansen. The two Blue Jackets forwards squash the corny notion that you can’t play with your food.
Now enjoy as you watch them pepper the net.
You know, I think that first “vegetable” might be an avocado. Technically, that’s a fruit. How do you like them apples?
Foligno certainly didn’t like having to pay up after (spoiler alert) losing the race.
“Don’t quit your day job, Foligno,” might be my favorite Morgan Freeman line since…Oh, heck. Everything Freeman says is an instant classic.
Like these videos? They were uncovered by the great Alison Lukan. I’m giving her a hat tip, you should give her a follow.
Oh, and speaking of Twitter, I really appreciated this gem in response to today's post.
That hasn't earned him any goodwill with at least one of the locals, though...
Terrelle Pryor contacted my parents to rent one of our houses... My dad told him no and ended the conversation with a GO BLUE!!! — Haley Fournier (@hafournier) February 19, 2015
So for all the recent talk about great the Duke/North Carolina basketball rivalry is (and last night's game was fantastic), today score one for Ohio State/Michigan.
Hat tip to friend and colleague Tim Hall.
Today is day one of the NFL combine. The first group of players to arrive in Indianapolis includes former Buckeye tight end Jeff Heuerman as well as the other members of his position group, place kickers, special teamers and offensive lineman.
Eventually, there will be four Buckeyes sweating under the scouts' microscope, and of these, one seems to stand out in the mind of NFL Network draft analyst Mike Mayock.
"Devin Smith...tracks the deep ball maybe better than anybody in this draft," Mayock said. "A lot of guys can't."
Pointing out he also expects Smith to run a forty-yard dash in less than 4.35 seconds, Mayock added, "He's got kind that of that center fielder skill to track the ball in the air, and that's rare, and when you combine it with his speed, that's a big weapon."
Smith and the other wide receivers, quarterbacks and running backs report for orientation tomorrow.
The next day, it's linebackers and defensive lineman checking in, and Mayock feels Michael Bennett should go somewhere in the second round and is one of eight defensive tackles he would consider a "high-level" player.
"I like Michael Bennett," Mayock said. "He needs to be in a system where he plays 3 technique in a 4-3. I think his quickness and explosion is what sets him apart."
The last group in Indianapolis is comprised of defensive backs, including one final Ohio State Buckeye.
"As far as Doran Grant," said Mayock, "he's kind of sneaky because his measurements, I don't think are going to jump off the board, but he's a really good football players, and from all I've heard, he's a great kid and a hard work ethic kid. He's the kind of guy I would bet on."
Mayock projects Grant to go "in the middle rounds."
The NFL Network's coverage of the combine starts with the on-field workouts Friday, and, of course, we'll be telling you how the Ohio State players are doing on 97.1 The Fan.
And for what Mayock had to say about the Browns and the upcoming draft, listen below:
It's the time of the season again where Bracketology talk begins to heat up. Beginning with the road trip tomorrow to East Lansing to face off against Michigan St., the Bucks have just a few more games to state their case as a tournament team and improve their tournament seeding.
Carpenter & Rothman spoke with two NCAA tournament experts this week to get a feel of where they Bucks are currently standing. ESPN's Joe Lunardi says that the Buckeyes are in the 7 seed range righ now, while CBSSports.com's Jerry Palm has the Buckeyes on his extended list of "bubble" teams. Get the inside information of where these experts have the Buckeyes at the moment and why they have them in that position...
Today, dear reader, I'm using you as my therapist. (Thanks in advance.) You see, most times when you write a column or blog or book or anything really, they tell you not to write something obvious.
How engaging is a dissertation on 2+2=4 going to be, right?
But today, for the sake of my sanity, I have to share this: No, Roquan Smith is not Rosa Parks.
I have to share this, because this seemingly straightforward truth is not so straightforward to everybody.
Enter Alabama columnist Kevin Scarbinsky.
Now, the work of Scarbinsky, at least that which I'm familiar with, is normally very good. He's a talented writer, and typically insightful. He's shown an ability to be extraordinarily gracious in the past, revisiting stories when he didn't them just right. In other words, don't take what I'm about to say as an indictment on his ability or common sense in general.
However, Scarbinsky today said he made a comparison that could be considered "over the top, out of line, disrespectful," and he's absolutely right. It is indeed all those things.
What was Scarbinsky comparing? Rosa Parks role in the civil rights movement, and Roquan Smith's refusal to sign a letter of intent, which allows him to wait until the first day of class for him to pick which college football team he'll play for.
What Smith is doing is worthwhile and perhaps trendsetting. Too many athletes are bound to a school only to have their coach or position coach leave after Signing Day. Indeed Scarbinsky's defense for using the Rosa Parks metaphor is that the issue is deserving of attention, so he needed an attention-grabbing analogy...
BUT I CAN'T HEAR YOUR POINT OVER MY OUTRAGE, KEVIN!
(Again, Kevin whom I otherwise like.)
Rosa Parks was arrested. She lost her job. She received death threats. The price of her taking a stand was very, very high.
In case you were unaware, Roquan Smith is not risking a lynching for what he has done.
In the comments section of his column, Scarbinsky asks readers why they are downplaying Parks' courage. He doesn't see the irony of how he's done exactly that by drawing a parallel between what Parks did and what Smith is trying to do.
He's asked by one reader why he didn't make the more reasonable comparison between Smith and Curt Flood, the late Cardinals outfielder who challenged baseball's reserve clause and and set the stage for free agency.
"Curt Flood is a good comparison and one I considered" Scarbinsky's responds. "But his name doesn't resonate with as many people today." Yes, and there's a reason for that. Flood also didn't risk his freedom and his life.
We've seen this a few times lately: Well-meaning people hoping to spotlight something important, only to distract from the issue by instead casting an even brighter spotlight on their own attention-grabbing tactics. (Think of the Nationwide commercial that aired during the Super Bowl.)
If you want to compare Rosa Parks and and Roquan Smith, in other words, you can do what my friend did and highlight what the two actually have in common.
@LoriSchmidt I don't think Rosa ever signed an NLI— Fro (@CPFro3) February 12, 2015
Ohio State head football coach Urban Meyer spoke in front of the Ohio Senate today as his national champion Buckeyes were honored at the Statehouse.
And a big thank you to Michael Hartley, who reminded us that Senator Cliff Hite is the same Cliff Hite who once coached in Findlay. Considering he is famous for starting his son, Ryan, over Ben Roethlisberger, we're really hoping that Hite didn't actually provide Meyer with any advice on his quarterback competition. I mean, we love Gigi Meyer and all, but...
Find out what you need to know about what they're calling #Elite15. Check out this interview with Bucknuts.com recruiting analyst Bill Kuerlic!
Mike Weber’s commitment to OSU is doubly sweet for Buckeye fans. They landed a quality running back…plus, he had decomitted from Michigan less than a month earlier. In fact, he decomitted as Michigan was losing to Maryland, 23-16. This is despite the fact that he said he’d been a Michigan fan since age 5. Oh, and did we mention Wolverines coach Jim Harbaugh was a teammate of Thomas Wilcher, Weber’s high school coach? The Detroit Free Press notes that, “Weber made the Detroit Free Press Dream Team after rushing for 2,268 yards and 29 touchdowns on 224 carries this past season (10.1 yards per carry). He topped 5,000 yards and 50 TDs for his career. He surpassed 400 yards rushing in a Division I state quarterfinal win over Chippewa Valley.” His entire playoff run was incredibly impressive, in fact. In his four postseason games alone, Weber rushed for a total 890 yards and 13 touchdowns. Finally, Weber was the leading rusher in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl with 48 yards on 10 carries. Ohio State had to hold off a late charge from the Wolverines to sign Weber. Harbaugh and Weber met January 28th to discuss the possibility of his coming to Ann Arbor. Sources: Detroit Free Press, MLive.com
Isaiah Prince is a rarity in football: a player who decommitted from Alabama. He is considered the top player out of Maryland, and took a hard look at the Terrapins as well before deciding on Ohio State. What do the Buckeyes get in Prince? He’s a 6’6” offensive lineman who recovered from a broken ankle his junior year to help spearhead an attack that ran for more than 3,700 yards this past season. He was also a participant in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl. Sources: The Washington Post, CBS Sports
Maybe no player in this class had their recruitment more discussed and dissected than quarterback Torrance Gibson. Maybe that’s because his recruitment started clear back in eighth grade, when the Miami Hurricanes became the first team to offer him a scholarship. His athleticism, also evidenced by the fact that he runs the 200 and 400 meters in track, was clear even back then. Of course, that was years before he led the spread offense of American Heritage High School to the school’s first ever state title his junior season and followed that up with another Class 5-A Championship his senior year. Over the course of his high school career, he threw for 4,094 yards and 44 touchdowns with just 7 interceptions in 421 pass attempts. About the only knock on his game was that his completion percentage was sub .500. During his final season, he completed 112 of 240 passes for 1,959 yards, with 21 touchdowns and just three interceptions. Gibson, also a prolific rusher ran for 1,012 yards, averaged 7.4 yards per carry, and scored 13 times. He played in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl, where he was 5/8 for 47 yards. Such achievements were not going to be ignored by other colleges, and Gibson was making visits to Auburn and LSU, even after committing to the Buckeyes. One last note on Gibson: He wears number 6, because he’s the youngest of six children raised by a single mom. Sources: The Orlando Sentinel, Bucknuts.com
An All-State wide receiver out of Arkansas and the Arkansas Farm Bureau Division 7A/6A Offensive Player of the Year, KJ Hill originally said he wanted to play for the home-state Razorbacks. Then he decided to at least consider offers from Alabama and Ohio State. Hill really liked Lane Kiffin’s Crimson Tide offense. He eventually chose OSU, however, making it a very good day for THE universities of the world. Hill’s senior season, he was on the receiving end of 58 catches, totaling 1,023 yards and 11 TDs in a pro-style scheme. He also had 7 rushing touchdowns. Hill is a basketball player, too, hoping his team can repeat last year’s championship performance. This year on the court, he had a 24-point effort in one quarter of a game against Little Rock Central, a game his team ultimately won 86-55. Sources: The Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, The Arkansas News