Master Teague III, Trey Sermon Primed for Early 50-50 Split in Backfield
The talented and fairly versatile Ohio State backfield certainly has its share of capable bodies for the 2020 season, all striving to follow the success of recent star and current Baltimore Raven J.K. Dobbins.
Dobbins ran for a staggering 2,000 yards and 21 touchdowns last fall, and the Buckeyes will now begin implementing new ball carriers in hopes of not missing a beat.
During Friday afternoon’s media session, offensive coordinator Kevin Wilson mentioned that returning backup Master Teague III and Oklahoma transfer Trey Sermon have been splitting snaps in practice with the first-team offense.
“Master is coming off injury but has a real shot now, especially with the season being delayed,” Wilson said. “Trey has looked very good coming in and catches it well, although we haven’t seen him with pads or in a game environment yet.”
Teague, a redshirt sophomore, still impressively finished seventh in the Big Ten for rushing last season behind Dobbins. He had 135 carries for 789 yards (5.8 average) and four TD’s, good enough to ultimately earn third team All-Big Ten. Teague unfortunately hurt his Achilles tendon early in the spring and has been working back.
Sermon joined the Buckeyes this past spring after three seasons at Oklahoma, where he compiled more than 2,000 rushing yards and 25 touchdowns for the Sooners. He was part of three Big 12 championship and College Football Playoff teams.
An honorable mention All-Big 12 selection, Sermon’s best campaign occurred as a sophomore in 2018 when he scampered for 947 yards and 13 touchdowns on the ground. The latter number ranked him second in the conference.
“Every year you need to have more than one,” Wilson said regarding the position. “Especially with the tempo in the college game now, you maybe need to have three.”
Marcus Crowley is not quite full speed after his ACL injury last November against Maryland. Versatile senior Demario McCall presents a nice hybrid option with dual abilities in the passing game, freshman Steele Chambers demonstrated nice flashes in the first-four games last year before redshirting, and junior Xavier Johnson was just moved up.
Whoever totes the rock will maneuver behind a quality offensive line that features All-American Wyatt Davis at guard, team captain Josh Myers in the middle, third-year starter Thayer Munford at left tackle and plenty others up front.