This year’s freshman class at Ohio State is one of the most anticipated in school history, only made even more exciting by the late addition of defensive end JT Tuimioloau and the recent enrollment of quarterback Quinn Ewers.
Ewers was the top quarterback prospect in the 2022 recruiting class, but then he reclassified to the 2021 class and is now the top quarterback prospect in that class. Tuimoloau’s decision went well past signing day and only wrapped up this summer.
But those two talented freshmen only tell part of the story.
Defensive end Jack Sawyer has arguably been the best player in the state of Ohio since his sophomore season. His spring game trailer of nearly six sacks has ramped up the excitement for Buckeye fans looking forward to his full motion picture release.
Sawyer wasn’t the only freshman starring in the spring game, as receiver Emeka Egbuka led all teams with catches and went over 100 yards receiving on the day. Egbuka came in as the top receiver in the 2021 class and he certainly lived up to his billing. Quarterback Kyle McCord also starred in the spring game, showing folks the kind of aggression that isn’t often found in freshmen quarterbacks. Offensive lineman Donovan Jackson out of Texas arrived in June but has already worked his way into the two-deep at right guard. It’s still very early in his Buckeye career but he is already impressing everyone.
And even with all of those names mentioned above, there is a seventh five-star freshman who may be more anticipated by Buckeye fans than anybody else.
Running back TreVeyon Henderson out of Virginia is just the third five-star tailback signed by Ohio State in the internet era (2002). He joins Maurice Clarett (2002) and Beanie Wells (2006). Those are two significant names in Buckeye lore and they bring a lot to live up to.
Henderson didn’t spend much of his high school career at running back, and wasn’t a full-time ball-carrier until his junior season. Everything he showed as a junior, however, was done on an elite level and it was very easy to project what he could be in college.
Henderson did not have a senior season in high school due to COVID, but he didn’t miss a step in the spring at Ohio State and has only gained momentum during fall camp.
Intel coming out of practices has been a constant stream of TreVeyon Henderson tales, and it’s not just the flies on the wall talking.
“He’s good, he’s electric,” said senior linebacker Dallas Gant last week after practice. “He’s a really smart kid, really intelligent kid, a really good kid. And I think that portrays on the field. He’s very talented. He shows a lot of spark on the field and watching film and stuff. He’s a very talented back.”
Henderson has broken a number of long runs in practice and isn’t doing it with just sheer speed. The thing about great backs is they have a number of distinct traits that can be used for any number of situations. So far, Henderson has been one of those guys who can do whatever it takes.
Going against him every day, the defense appreciates the looks he gives them, and they also look forward to the days when he’s doing it to the opposition.
“Great back,” linebacker Cody Simon said, almost shaking his head and nodding simultaneously. “He’s one of the more talented backs I’ve ever seen. He gets us better every day, I can tell you that. He’s really elusive and he helps us work our techniques and our footwork and everything. So I think he’s gonna really help us this year just when we’re playing really elusive backs and playing really athletic backs.”