Ohio State offensive line commit Ben Christman did a little bit of everything for his team in the season opener on Friday night. The Richfield (Ohio) Revere star saw his team’s season start a week later than many high schools around the state of Ohio and the Patriots lost a hard fought battle to Aurora, 12-7.
Christman, however, made plays in all three phases of the game. The 6-foot-6, 300-pound prospect recorded numerous pancakes on offense, playing mostly left tackle but also some right guard. While one would expect Christman to dominate along the offensive line, he also recorded a sack and a pair of tackles-for-loss at defensive tackle and he blocked a pair of PAT’s, making his presence felt in every phase of the game
I expected to see Christman dominate an undersized Aurora defensive line on Friday night, which he did. What I did not expect was for him to play so many snaps in a season opening game. Christman’s team is a week behind most in the state and it was impressive how well conditioned he seemed given all of the chaos that COVID-19 has caused the preparation process.
He showed the raw power and mean streak we’ve always seen out of him, but his explosiveness at defensive tackle was equally impressive.
Make no mistake though, Christman is an offensive lineman all the way at the next level and I continue to feel he could play either tackle or guard in college depending on need and getting the best five on the field.
Christman is a mauler in the run game but also plays pretty light on his feet for a 300-pounder. Like with most high school offensive linemen, he’s going against physically over-matched defensive linemen at the high school level so there will be an adjustment period once he starts routinely lining up against elite athletes that are also in his weight class.
But Christman has proven capable of winning those matchups in camp settings in the past, so it’s not a completely unknown variable here.
I’ve had Christman in my top 3 in Ohio for more than a year now and he didn’t do anything on Friday that would make me question his ability as a Top 100 type of prospect nationally. This is an extremely strong Ohio class, especially within the top 10, so the competition will be pretty fierce among that group as we start to consider our final rankings for after the season.