COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ohio State opened the spring with nine cornerbacks. It appears the Buckeyes will head into the 2017 season with a less crowded cornerbacks room.
Sophomore cornerback Rodjay Burns announced he’s transferring, becoming the second cornerback to leave Ohio State since the end of spring. On May 9, it was reported that Joshua Norwood is leaving Ohio State for Georgia Southern. Burns is heading to Louisville, where he was originally committed before flipping to the Buckeyes late in the 2016 recruiting cycle.
Ohio State brought in five incredibly talented cornerbacks in the class of 2017, which figured to stir up the depth chart. In addition to JUCO prospect Kendall Sheffield, a former 5-star recruit, Ohio State signed 5-star cornerbacks Jeffrey Okudah and Shaun Wade and 4-star cornerbacks Amir Riep and Marcus Williamson. Riep was the only player in that group who didn’t enroll early, so the depth chart battle began in spring practice.
Ohio State cornerbacks
|Damon Arnette||Redshirt sophomore||★★★|
|Kendall Sheffield||Redshirt sophomore||★★★★★|
|Jeffrey Okudah||True freshman||★★★★★|
|Amir Riep||True freshman||★★★★|
|Shaun Wade||True freshman||★★★★★|
|Marcus Williamson||True freshman||★★★★|
Burns and Norwood were both 3-star prospects who committed to Ohio State late in the recruiting process after flipping from another school. Burns, a native of Louisville, Ky., had been committed to Louisville before officially visiting the Buckeyes in January 2016. He committed to the Buckeyes shortly after his visit, though Louisville almost swayed him back into playing for his hometown school. It took a visit from head coach Urban Meyer four days before National Signing Day to keep Louisville at bay.
Burns came into a talented cornerbacks room and appeared to be a redshirt candidate. However, Ohio State put him on the field in the fourth quarter of a 77-10 win against Bowling Green in the 2016 season opener. Burns opened his career with a bang, returning an interception 75 yards for a touchdown in his college debut.
He played sparingly the rest of the way, though, appearing in seven games and recording just one tackle.