No. 1 recruit among most likely frosh to see field for Buckeyes against FAU

In his final press conference before Ohio State opens the season against Florida Atlantic, coach Ryan Day gave a rundown of which first-year players are most likely to see the field.

He named receivers Garrett Wilson and Jameson Williams, running backs Steele Chambers and Marcus Crowley, center Jack Miller, linebackers Craig Young and Cade Stover, but perhaps the most noteworthy was Zach Harrison.

A 6-foot-6, 255-pound defensive end from Lewis Center Olentangy Orange, Harrison was the top-rated player in Ohio last year, and securing his signature in December was the first major win of Day’s career as Ohio State head coach.

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Despite playing his high school ball just north of Columbus, Harrison strongly considered Michigan before deciding to stay closer to home.

His path to early playing time, though was not exactly clear. Aside from being seen as a fairly raw prospect, Harrison joined a position group that is thoroughly stocked with talent both young and old at Ohio State.

And yet he has found his way into the depth chart anyway.

“He has that athleticism, but the thing that surprised us when he got here is really how mature he was in his approach,” Day said. "Played tough, practiced tough, practiced hard, had a very mature approach about him. And so I think his ceiling is through the roof. And now he's just gonna get some experience.”

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While coaches used to have hard decisions to make as far as who to prepare for early playing time, a new rule allowing players to get into up to four games without losing their ability to take a redshirt season has eased some of the pressure.

"Everybody's got to be ready to roll because of the four-game rule,” Day said. "We want everybody to have an opportunity to play, so they all have to be ready to roll.”

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