Final AP poll has some surprises, players join Ohio State receiving corps and more

Colin Gay

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Today is Wednesday, Jan. 11, and this is your Ohio State Wake-Up Call. 

 That’s all folks

The morning after the Clemson Tigers hoisted the College Football Playoff National Championship Trophy on Monday night after the 35-31 win over Alabama, the AP published its final Top 25 of the season. There were some surprises.

The Big Ten really suffered as a conference after struggling in bowl games. After the 31-0 loss to Clemson in the Fiesta Bowl, Ohio State fell three spots to No. 6, behind two Pac 12 teams (USC and Washington) and a Big 12 team that the Buckeyes had defeated during the regular season. However, the Buckeyes were still ahead of the Big Ten champion Penn State, who lost to the Trojans in the Rose Bowl.

We will see if this poll has any bearing on next year’s early rankings.


 Every streak ends

After starting Big Ten play with four straight wins, No. 11 Ohio State (14-5, 4-1) suffered its first conference loss this season – 94-75 to Michigan State (13-4, 3-1).

Two things affected the Buckeyes on Tuesday night. First, Ohio State only shot 31.1 percent from the field and a miserable 25 percent from behind the 3-point line. Guard Kelsey Mitchell, the reigning Big Ten Player of the Week, had only 13 points, making only four field goals on 18 attempts. Forward Stephanie Mavunga, who had nine points, led the team with 15 rebounds.

The other problem for the Buckeyes: Spartans guard Tori Jankoska was a one-woman scoring machine against the Buckeyes defense, scoring 42 of Michigan State’s 94 points and breaking the school’s single-game scoring record. The Spartans’ all-time leading scorer shot 56 percent, making eight 3-pointers on 19 attempts. She was effective both on and off the ball with seven assists, six rebounds and two steals.

Ohio State will end its two-game road trip in West Lafayette, Ind., where the Buckeyes will take on Purdue (11-6, 2-1) at 3:30 p.m. on Jan. 15. The game will be televised on ESPN2.

A different Zone 6

Ohio State wide receivers coach Zach Smith will have new players in his practices next season. After seeing the field mostly in a special teams role in his first two seasons, DB Eric Glover-Williams is shifting over to the offensive side of the ball and joining the receivers.

As Land of 10 writer Ryan Ginn wrote, players raved about Glover-Williams when he was a scout quarterback before the Fiesta Bowl, if you can’t tell by this highlight reel below. 

“Before the games, we sit with Coach Smith,” Worley said. “Me, Marshon (Lattimore) and Malik tell him, ‘Y’all need to put him on offense or punt return.’ He’s the real deal with the ball in his hands. At Ohio State, there’s a lot of guys behind the scenes that a lot of people don’t know that help this team in so many ways. Eric Glover-Williams has helped this team in a tremendous amount of ways.”

However, Glover-Williams isn’t the only one. 2017 recruit Brendon White looks like he’s joining Smith and the receiving corps this fall. White was deemed as an athlete coming into Ohio State and has played multiple positions, including wide receiver, outside linebacker and quarterback. 

With two more options, we will see which receiver gets more comfortable by the time the 2017 season starts.

Underdog narrative 

After Clemson’s 35-31 win over Alabama to secure the 2017 National Championship, coach Dabo Swinney had to get some things off his chest. 

After being the underdog in 2017 after losing to Alabama in the 2016 National Championship, he called out Fox Sports’ Colin Cowherd, who had called his Clemson team a fraud during the regular season. As Swinney listed names of teams the Tigers beat in 2016, including Ohio State in the College Football Playoff semifinal, he made sure that people knew that his team was nothing to mess with.

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