When a bunch of competitive football players get into one room, there's bound to be some trash talk. That was certainly the case Tuesday afternoon at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center.
Seniors were divided up and placed on the Scarlet and Gray teams by head coach Jim Tressel and his staff and the groups then held the annual spring draft. Alex Boone and James Laurinaits announced the picks for the Scarlet, while Marcus Freeman and Malcolm Jenkins handled that duty for the Gray.
There was plenty of talk during the draft and after.
"We're going to kill them," Alex Boone said. "This game's going to be over at halftime. They're coming out with a white flag, I guarantee it right now."
The Scarlet won the coin toss and the right to choose the first position. One team picks a position and the player it wants from that position. Then the other team picks a player from the same position until all the players at that spot on the depth chart have been taken. Then the other team picks a position and a player until all positions and players have been selected.
Thaddeus Gibson was the first overall pick, made by the Scarlet after that squad's senior leaders picked the "Leo" defensive lineman position. Offensive lineman Alex Boone announced the pick and then held up Gibson's No. 90 jersey.
Boone said the choice was an easy one.
"We came in and in two seconds we looked at the board (with which seniors were assigned to which team) and knew right away what we wanted to do," Boone said. "We knew right away that we were going to take Thad first."
Solomon Thomas – the only other Leo on the depth chart – then went to the Gray team. Gray then chose the defensive end position and took Lawrence Wilson, who was the first overall pick in the 2007 draft.
Overall, the Scarlet ended up with seven defense linemen (although Chris Rietschlin will not play) while the Gray had only five. Members of the Gray squad wanted to trade to get another linemen at the end of the draft, but the Scarlet turned down every request.
"All we wanted to trade for was D-linemen," Malcolm Jenkins said. "They didn't want to trade, and that's fine with us. We'll go with who we've got."
Jenkins said the Gray's squad will be lead by its defense.
"We've got a good secondary," said Jenkins, who has himself, Nick Patterson, Donald Washington, Andre Amos, Kurt Coleman, Aaron Gant and Rocco Pentello manning the secondary. "We got everyone we need."
Before the squads selected their players, several were announced as being out for Saturday's game. Tailback Chris "Beanie" Wells, receiver Brian Robiskie, guards Steve Rehring and Ben Person and defensive end Rob Rose were among those who will not play.
Even so, Wells was placed on a squad. Tressel assigned him to the Gray.
"We're going to get him a whistle and clipboard," Tressel said.
Also in attendance, but obviously not playing, was Vernon Gholston. He entered the meeting room near the end of the draft and asked which team he would be playing for.
"I'm trying to get into the draft, too," said Gholston, who should be drafted by a NFL team later this month.
Starting quarterback Todd Boeckman was assigned to the Scarlet. He will only play in the first half, however. The Scarlet selected Antonio Henton to play the second half, leaving Joe Bauserman to play the second, third and fourth quarters for the Gray. Tressel also assigned Henton to play the first quarter for the Gray.
Former Buckeye QB Mike Tomczak will serve as the honorary head coach of the Scarlet, while one of his favorite targets, Cris Carter, will perform honorary coach duties for the Gray. Darrell Hazell will be the head coach of the Scarlet, and Luke Fickell will be the head coach of the Gray.
The annual spring game will start at approximately 1:30 p.m., following a men's lacrosse game vs. Denver at 11 a.m.
Assigned To Squads
CB – Shaun Lane, SS – Jamario O'Neal, MLB – James Laurinaitis, SLB/FB – Curtis Terry, DT – Nader Abdallah, DT – Chris Rietschlin, WR – Kyle Ruhl, OT Alex Boone, OG – Ben Person, OT – Jon Skinner, TE – Rory Nicol, QB – Todd Boeckman, P – A.J. Trapasso.
FS – Nick Patterson, CB – Malcolm Jenkins, WLB – Marcus Freeman, DT – Bryan Gray, WR – Brian Robiskie, OT – Doug Ebner, OG – Kyle Mitchum, OG – Steve Rehring, TE – J.D. Larson, TE – Brandon Smith, WR – Ben Kacsandi, RB – Maurice Wells, K – Ryan Pretorius.
Listed as out for Saturday
Mike Adams, Michael Brewster, Garrett Hummel, Josh Kerr, Ben Person, Chris Roark, Steve Rehring, Jon Skinner, Chris Wells, Brian Robiskie, Jamario O'Neal, Rob Rose, Donnie Evege.
"Leo" Defensive end:
Scarlet – Thaddeus Gibson
Gray – Solomon Thomas
G – Lawrence Wilson
S – Cameron Heyward
G – Mark Johnson
S – Tom Ingham
S – Brian Hartline
G – Dane Sanzenbacher
S – Ray Small
G – Taurian Washington
S – Devon Torrence
G – Grant Schwartz
S – Jake Stoneburner
G – Ryan Shuck, Ricky Crawford (both assigned by Jim Tressel)
G – Bryant Browning
S – J.B. Shugarts
G – Andrew Miller
S – Jimmy Cordle
G – Andrew Moses
S – Scott Sika
G – Jake Ballard
S – Brandon Smith (assigned by John Peterson)
S – Doug Worthington
G – Todd Denlinger
S – Dexter Larimore
G – Donald Washington
S – Chimdi Chekwa
G – Andre Amos
S – James Scott
G – Devon Torrence (who will play two series)
S – Connor Smith
G – Zach Slagle
S – Evan Blankenship
G – Chris Malone
G – Kurt Coleman
S – Anderson Russell
G – Aaron Gant
S – Nate Oliver
G – Rocco Pentello
S – Eugene Clifford
S – Austin Spitler (who will play some fullback)
G – Etienne Sabino
G – Ross Homan
S – Brian Rolle
G – Andrew Sweat
S – Jermale Hines
G – Tyler Moeller
G – Brandon Saine
S – Dan Herron
G – Marcus Williams
S – K.C. Christian
G – Joe Gantz
S – Bo DeLande
S – Antonio Henton (will play the first quarter with Gray, last three with Scarlet)
G – Joe Bauserman (will play the second half with Gray)
G – Jon Thoma
S – Brent Bartholomew
S – Jake McQuaide
G – Patrick Howe
G – Aaron Pettrey
S – Devin Barclay, Michael Mattimoe
G – Spencer Smith
S – Ryan Lukens (assigned)