Teams & Conferences

Ohio State QB J.T. Barrett Returning. What Does It All Mean?

Ohio State QB J.T. Barrett Returning. What Does It All Mean?

Ohio State quarterback J.T. Barrett returning for his senior season. What does it all mean?

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It means Ohio State is a preseason top five team, possibly No. 2

This was the transitional season, and even though it all ended in a thud, the Buckeyes still got to the College Football Playoff.

Next year, even without LB Raekwon McMillan, C Pat Elflein, S Malik Hooker, CB Gareon Conley, and a few other key parts, the Buckeyes will be a killer.

This was a very young, very inexperienced team in some areas, and everything turned out just fine. Now, with Barrett back, Ohio State gets its veteran leader, to go along with RB Mike Weber, and most of the top receivers. If Curtis Samuel returns, the offense will be as strong as ever, while the defensive front should be dominant from the start. There will be more defections to come, but the Buckeyes will still be the favorites to win the Big Ten.

Barrett is better than you think

Everyone watched the problems against Clemson in the Fiesta Bowl disaster, and he might have sputtered and struggled against Michigan State and Michigan, but he completed 62% of his throws with 24 scores and seven picks – three of them in the last two games – while running for 845 yards and nine scores. He gets dogged because he doesn’t take the top off the defense, and he doesn’t look the part of a dropback bomber, but he’s a gamer who knows how to pull games out of the fire. Yeah, he deserves to be part of the Heisman chase – just like he belonged to be in it this year.

But was Barrett really a top pro prospect?

Sort of, but not really. He’s not all that big, and he’s not a polished passer, but he’s got the skills for someone to have taken a mid-round flier on if he came out this season. Next year, he could work his way into a second rounder if he can show more downfield passing ability and be more consistent. At the immediate moment, going into next year’s draft, he’ll be behind Oklahoma State’s Mason Rudolph, Washington State’s Luke Falk, and Wyoming’s Josh Allen – with more talents certain to rise up.