Person Has Big Plans For This Summer

Ben Person

Xenia, Ohio, offensive lineman Ben Person discussed his summer schedule, including time he expects to spend working out at Ohio State. Person will be among 10 future Buckeyes on display at Saturday's Ohio All-Star Classic at Crew Stadium (7 p.m., ONN).

One player to keep an eye on during Saturday's Ohio All-Star Classic (7 p.m., ONN) at Columbus Crew Stadium is offensive lineman Ben Person of Xenia.

The 6-4, 320-pound Person, who will play for the South all-stars, has designs on playing for the Buckeyes as a true freshman this fall.

"One of the coaches told me he thinks I have a good chance to play," Person said. "That's my goal. My goal is to at least make the two-deep and not get redshirted. But if I get redshirted I would not have a problem with that. I just want to play."

Person could play guard or tackle at the college level. His preference?

"I don't really have a preference," he said. "I think at the college level I would probably be a good fit at guard."

Person is enjoying a chance to get to know some of his future OSU teammates this week.

"It's very exciting," he said. "I'm getting a chance to spend some time with some of my future teammates. Like I'm getting to know Sirjo (Welch) pretty well. Everybody here is a great athlete and everybody here is college material, so this is kind of like playing in a college game."

Person said he is planning to remain in Columbus after Saturday's game and begin working out at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center.

"Chad Hoobler and I are pretty good friends," he said. "Chad and I and three guys from Pennsylvania are going to move into the dorms at Ohio State this Sunday and start working out this summer. Then, in July, I'll be playing in the Big 33. The guys from Pennsylvania are Rory Nicol, Kyle Mitchum and Devon Lyons."

Person talked about his goals for the summer conditioning program.

"I talked to Coach Heacock and Coach Bollman," he said. "I asked them how much they want me to weigh. They said not to worry about my weight, but just to report in shape and to just keep getting stronger. If you're in shape, it doesn't matter how much you way. To me being in shape means you're slim. You don't look gross. You can play all four quarters. You're just in shape. You have confidence.

"If I had to say, I'd say I'd like to be at 305."

After months of waiting Person is glad his OSU career is soon to begin.

"I'm very excited," he said. "I'm also a little nervous. It will be a big change in my life. I'm moving away from home. But I'm very excited, more excited than anything, and a little bit anxious.

"I expect to get in there into the weight room and get stronger and faster and get in the best shape I can. I expect to compete and just do the best I can."

Person will be among 10 future Buckeyes on display during Saturday's Ohio All-Star Classic, sponsored by Grange Insurance.

Also playing for the South team will be Alex Barrow (Dublin Coffman), Erik Haw (Columbus Independence), Chad Hoobler (Carrollton), Jonathan Skeete (Gahanna Lincoln), Brandon Underwood (Hamilton) and SirJoseph Welch (Columbus Beechcroft). The South squad will be coached by Steve Channell of Trenton Edgewood.

OSU signees on the North squad include Brandon Smith (Euclid), Shaun Lane (Hubbard) and Curtis Terry (Cleveland Glenville), who was a late addition to the game. The North will be coached by Mentor‘s Steve Trivisonno.

The Ohio All-Star Classic was played in Columbus Crew Stadium for the first time in 2001 after being held in Massillon or Canton from 1977-2000. The Ohio All-Star Classic was also held in Columbus in 1975 and 1976 when the game was contested in Ohio Stadium.

The players have a full week of activities planned. They will visit Children's Hospital, Columbus City Council, a Clippers baseball game and have a swimming night at a Columbus area pool. Plus, the annual Ohio All-Star Classic banquet is scheduled for Friday night.

Tickets are available for $10 at the Crew Stadium box office. Call (614) 447-CREW for more details.

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