By Jim Baird | AM Football Briefing
ELFLEIN HEALTHY: When you play offensive line it isn’t a helpful development to lose the use of one of your arms. That’s what happened to Pat Elflein when he suffered a pinched nerve in the spring. Expected to anchor Ohio State’s line this season, Elflein has taken it slow since a May surgery. At Wednesday’s practice he was back in action, Bill Landis writes on Elflein being back at full go.
D-LINE DIRTY DOZEN: How many will rotate in on OSU’s defensive line? According to defensive line coach Larry Johnson, it may be 12. 12? OSU rotated eight last year, 12 could represent A) a lot of depth, or B) a thinness between quality at the top and mid-tier of the rotation. No matter who gets in, you can be sure that Johnson will have them inspired to go, Tim May with more.
LEGION OF BOOM MEETS ZEKE: The third week of preseason saw Zeke get loose to the tune of 48 yards on 7 carries, including this 13 yard dash into the Seattle secondary. Zeke was sidelined with a hamstring injury for the first two weeks of preseason.
BOSA LOSES BLACK STRIPE: Freshmen Nick Bosa and Malik Harrison were the latest to lose their black stripes signifying their arrival to the Buckeye team, WATCH. Ari Wasserman with the list of freshmen who have lost the stripe so far.
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FROM THE ASHES?: Former Buckeye Co-Defensive Coordinator Chris Ash has his hands full. The first year head coach is aiming to give a pulse to a Rutgers program that last year went 4-8 overall and 1-7 in the Big 10. How’s he doing? So far so good. A look at Ash’s new culture at Rutgers — and DJ Durkin at Maryland — and their fast starts on the recruiting trail. Matt Brown previews what you need to know for when Ohio State plays the Scarlet Knights.
CFB SEASON STARTS TONIGHT – WHAT IS HAWAII DOING?: It’s here. At 10:00 PM EST on ESPN Hawaii and Cal kickoff the 2016 college football season in Sydney, Australia. Cal is a 22.5 point favorite. Sydney isn’t of course close to any college football team, so it’s interesting to see how the clubs are handling their week 2 schedules. Cal is smart. They have a week 2 bye and won’t play until September 10 in San Diego, a 10:30 PM kick against the Aztecs. Hawaii has long held the gold medal for craziest in-season travel schedule — but their approach after Sydney is perhaps most reasonably characterized as clinically insane. The Rainbow Warriors fly 9,439 to play That School up North in Ann Arbor on September 3. For those keeping score at home, it is approximately 24,874 to travel around the earth’s equator — so Hawaii will travel about 38% of the way to play their first two games. The game against the Wolverines is also a noon kickoff. And, add in the fact that Ann Arbor is 14 hours ahead of Sydney, and you’ve got the ingredients for what may be the strangest two-game travel stretch in college football history. That Team Up North is 41 point favorites, here’s to hoping the jet-lagged Rainbows cover.
1) Players eager to get on special teams, Bill Rabinowitz, Columbus Dispatch – August 26
2) Depth Chart Analysis, Complete 2016 Preview and Predictions, Ben Axelrod – Bleacher Report – August 26