Tuesday, April 20, 2010


Photo of Terrelle Pryor by The Buckeye Times' Darla Dunkle-Hudnell

COLUMBUS — Wednesday in the team room at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center in Columbus, the Ohio State football seniors will hold their annual Scarlet and Gray (spring game) draft.

The seniors will be divided into two sides (Scarlet and Gray) by OSU head coach Jim Tressel and they will select their non-senior teammates for Saturday's spring game.

Except, they don't just pick the players out of the blue, they do it by position and choose back and forth until they are finished with said position. For example: say the Scarlet choose tailback Dan Herron. Then the Gray would draft a tailback like Jordan Hall. Then the Scarlet go with Jaamal Berry. And so on and so forth ...

Of course, that to me is fairly predictable. So, I am going to do a top 10 spring game mock draft (including seniors) as I feel it would go if the sides could just pick the best players regardless of position, class or injury status.

Here's how I see it going if that was the format they used:

1. Terrelle Pryor QB (6-6, 233, Jr.)
Why? Let's face it, you always want to begin a draft with a quarterback. When the face of your team, the leader of your team and the best athlete of your team are all the same guy, well ... you select him No. 1. Duh!

2. Cameron Heyward DE (6-5, 288, Sr.)
Why? When the quarterback is off the board, the next place you look is a defender who can get to the quarterback. Last season, Heyward led the Buckeyes in sacks (6.5) and was second in tackles for loss (10). This season, he is bigger, faster, stronger and another year more experienced. He is virtually unblockable. He's a no-brainer at No. 2 spot.

3. Michael Brewster C (6-5, 293, Jr.)
Why? You always want to get protection for your quarterback early in the draft. Sure, left tackle is usually where you look first, because he protects the right handed quarterback's blind side. Unfortunately, the Buckeyes don't have a tackle I would select this high in the draft. So, the next most important position on the offensive line is the center. He is the quarterback of the line, he reads the defense and makes all of the blocking calls. Brewster does that job to perfection. He is one of the best in the nation at the center position.

4. Brian Rolle MLB (5-11, 218, Sr.)
Why? When you wear No. 36 across your jersey at Ohio State (former OSU great Chris Spielman's number), you better be able to bring it. Rolle does, every single game he plays. The middle linebacker is perhaps the most important position to the Buckeyes defense and Rolle anchors down his role with high intensity and superb football instincts. He may be a little undersized at the position and many may not like taking him this high in the draft. However, I remember all those teams passing on former Chicago Bears linebacker Mike Singletary for the very same reasons. He's now in the Hall of Fame.

5. John Simon DT (6-2, 270, So.)
Why? Some may think selecting Simon in the top five is a little bit of a reach. This is my "going on potential" pick. Simon has been unstoppable this spring, using his high motor and incredible strength to manhandle whomever is in front of him. I've had a feeling about Simon all spring (and off-season for that matter) and after watching him dominate last Saturday's jersey scrimmage with two sacks, two batted down passes and a fumble recovery for a touchdown, I have no problem taking the first-year starter this high in the draft.

Plus, he scares the hell out of me.

6. Justin Boren G (6-3, 320, Sr.)
Why? Please see the last line in the description of my No. 5 pick.

7. Devon Torrence CB (6-1, 200, Sr.)
Why? If there's a shutdown cornerback in the draft, you usually take him high. Now, I'm not saying that Torrence is a "shutdown cornerback" just yet, but I do see all of the attributes of one. Plus, when you select Torrence, you're getting a great athlete who can also return punts and kicks.

8. Ross Homan OLB (6-0, 227, Sr.)
Why? Homan is the "safe" pick of my top 10. The senior from Coldwater not only led the Buckeyes in tackles last season (108), but he also tied for the lead on the team in interceptions (5), as well. Homan is always around the football and he's one of the most steady forces, on one of the best defenses in the country.

9. Brandon Saine RB (6-1, 219, Sr.)
Why? Saine emerged late last season as the No. 1 tailback on the team because of his powerful running style and the ability to catch it downfield. Saine has the size and speed of a prototype NFL tailback. He will have a huge impact this season on the Buckeyes run to Glendale. Solid character guy as well.

10. DeVier Posey WR (6-2, 213, Jr.)
Why? It's always nice to snag a No. 1 type receiver in the top 10 and Posey definitely fills the bill. Posey has great size, good speed and excellent instincts out on the edges, giving Pryor a big play target, as well as a top flight possession guy. Posey would be higher on this list if his hands were a little more consistent. In fact, he has top five talent, and as soon as his hands get to the point where they're automatic (and I think he's getting there), he will be a top three player on the Buckeyes.