The 2018 spring college football rankings, taking the first look at the Ohio Bobcats.
No. 90: Ohio Bobcats
Spring Practice Starts: March 20
Spring Game: April 21
Ohio Bobcats Spring Status
Considering it blew out eventual MAC champ Toledo 38-10, this might have been the league’s best team last year – but choking away a loss to Akron screwed that all up.
This will once again be a typical Ohio team under Frank Solich. It’ll be solid, it’ll go to a bowl, and it’ll be a player in the MAC title chase again.
The offense revolves around Nathan Rourke, one of the nation’s most productive rushing quarterbacks working behind a good line that gets back three starters.
The big, big problem, though, is a defense that loses six of the seven starters up front, including LB Quentin Poling and five of the top nine tacklers.
Ohio Biggest Depth Chart Battle
Linebacker. The Bobcats have to replace the all-around leading playmaker in Poling and his running mate Chad Moore. Evan Croutch is back at one linebacker spot, but who’ll step up in the middle to replace Poling’s 107 tackles and leadership? Moore was third on the team with 78 stops.
Ohio Biggest Issue
The secondary has to be tighter. The Bobcats have the experience – the secondary should be the early strength of the D – but they have to be a whole lot better after picking off just nine passes and allowing 249 yards or more ten times. Teams only completed 57% of their passes, but they went for a whole lot of yards.
Ohio Biggest Positive
The running game. When you get 912 yards and 21 scores from your quarterback, your ground attack is okay. Nathan Rourke will be the star, but A.J. Ouellette is coming off a 1,006-yard, seven score season. Dorian Brown is done, but it’s a deep backfield that should combine forces for well over 3,000 yards again.
Really, Why Are The Ohio Bobcats Ranked Here?
The defense has enough parts back to eventually be okay, but there are way too many losses up front to expect the same production. The offense will do its job again, and the Bobcats will be good, but it’s not the same team as last year, and that one couldn’t get the job done.