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Monday, March 4, 2013
Five questions facing OSU in 2014

By Brad Bournival

Spring practice begins Tuesday at Ohio State, but the Buckeyes never stop recruiting.

On Feb. 6, Urban Meyer and Co. landed the third-ranked team in the nation after a 2012 recruiting campaign that put Ohio State sixth.

There are certain things we know about the Buckeyes as they fine-tune their lineup, and other things that need to be addressed.

Here are five questions facing the school as they turn the calendar completely to 2014:

1. What to do with the offensive line?

The trenches are very shallow in terms of depth. The Buckeyes know that and already have two big names in ESPN Watch List junior Kyle Trout and Marcelys Jones. Expect that number to grow to as many as five or six with Jamarco Jones being one of the key targets Ohio State goes after.

2. We know who QB one is, who is QB two?

The Buckeyes keep playing the waiting game with Clemson commit Deshaun Watson and haven’t offered anyone else at quarterback in 2014. While Ohio State isn’t in any hurry to throw another offer out, it will eventually even if it comes just before its senior advanced camp in June. BuckeyeNation thinks the next offer will go to Drew Barker or possibly Caleb Henderson.

3. Who gets the boot?

With Johnny Townsend ultimately choosing Florida on Feb. 7, the punting game is in a state of flux with the Buckeyes. Drew Basil should enter the spring as the No. 1 punter with Frank Epitropoulos possibly backing him up. The question becomes will Ohio State -- with limited scholarship options -- use one in the recruiting class of 2014. The guess here is the Buckeyes wait until 2015 before taking a punter and putting him on scholarship.

4. What’s up at wideout?

With the top-ranked wide receiver/athlete class of 2013, Ohio State is in no hurry to pluck just any wide receiver out of the air in 2014. The proof comes in the fact Lonnie Johnson and ESPN Watch List Thaddeus Snodgrass appeared ready to say yes to the Buckeyes, but quickly canceled announcement plans. Expect Ohio State to continue its selective process with Corey Smith, Dontre Wilson, Jalin Marshall and James Clark in the fold.

5. How many linebackers will the Buckeyes take?

If Ohio State gets four commitments, don’t be surprised if it keeps them all. Everyone knows the big three of Raekwon McMillan, Clifton Garrett and Dante Booker, but Dillon Bates and Kyle Berger are certainly making the rounds as of late. McMillan, Garrett and Booker are almost assured locks if they decide to give Ohio State their pledge, but the Buckeyes would likely welcome Bates or Berger if either wants to come to Ohio State as well.