OSU coaches still root for Gators, Irish, Bearcats

Associated Press Published: October 10, 2012

DEPTH CHARGE: Even though everything seems to be going swimmingly for the Buckeyes, the coaches are holding their breaths. They don't believe there is enough depth to get by in case of a crucial injury or two.

On top of everything else — the loss of LB Etienne Sabino (broken leg) and RB Jordan Hall (knee ligament) for at least while longer — Ohio State had to surrender scholarships as part of its NCAA sanctions.

"Everywhere you go across the country, by game six, there are injuries," Hinton said. "(You're allowed) 85 scholarships and right now Ohio State is at 82. It adds up. Those extra bodies all add up, so you never have enough depth."

Meyer half joked that if an OL broke a shoe string, he'd call timeout rather than take out a starter because the backups aren't ready.

He said the shortage of able bodies, due to injuries and due to NCAA penalties, is noticeable.

"We are definitely feeling the issues of a scholarship reduction," he said. "When we lost a couple of defensive linemen, that hurt us bad. It doesn't show up until someone gets a turf toe or someone has an issue, then it really starts to surface. And we're at that point right now."

Hinton, also Ohio State's recruiting coordinator, added, "A couple injuries affect every team, even if it's the No. 2 at that position because your No. 3 really might not be ready. So all of a sudden you go into every game kind of sweating bullets. Because there's an old saying in football: 'Have a pair and a spare.' Coming up with that spare is sometimes a challenge."

MORE LONGHORNS: Ohio State and Texas have agreed to a home-and-home football series that will have the two teams playing in Austin, Texas, in 2022 and in Columbus in 2023.

It's a continued response to major-college programs upgrading their opponents to improve their strength of schedule in the new playoff system still being finalized.

The games will be played Sept. 17, 2022, in Texas Stadium and Sept. 16, 2023, in Ohio Stadium. The schools have met three times previously — a home-and-home arrangement in 2005 and 2006, and in the 2009 Fiesta Bowl — with Texas holding a 2-1 edge.

Ohio State AD Gene Smith said playing teams of Texas' caliber "creates remarkable experiences for our players and fans."


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