What a whirlwind of a week it was for the Ohio State Buckeyes. Last Friday morning, news broke that Chase Young was suspended indefinitely for violating an NCAA violation, one in which he supposedly received money from a family friend to pay for his girlfriend to attend the bowl game last season. The key thing here is that the star defensive end paid the loan back. Then, the scarlet and gray decided to dominant Maryland, 73-14, in a game that the starters only played the first half.
Heading into this weekend’s game against Rutgers, the NCAA announced on Wednesday that Young will only face a two-game suspension, meaning that after he already sat out the game against the Terrapins, Young will return for the game against the Penn State and then Michigan to close out the regular season.
So, why does this all matter outside of the fact that Ohio State is without the most dominant player in college football? It’s tough enough for a defensive player to win the Heisman Trophy (only Charles Woodson has done so since the award debuted in 1935), Young missing any time would greatly impact his odds, in fact, it would basically mean that he’s out of the running for it.
Given that Young is only out two games, he can still possibly make it to New York for the ceremony as a top-three candidate, but the chances of him winning the most prestigious individual award in college football are now slim to none.
With that said, Justin Fields’ odds benefited from Young’s fall, as the quarterback is now No. 4 in ESPN’s latest Heisman Watch:
Notable: It was just another day at the office for Fields, who threw for three TDs and ran for another — all in the first half — in a blowout win over Maryland. He threw for 200 yards as Ohio State shredded the Terps’ defense and stayed undefeated on the year.
Quotable: “We went through a little adversity this week,” coach Ryan Day said. “Adversity reveals character, and our character was at the forefront of this game. I felt we came out and showed we’re made of something special here.”
Due to missing the game against Maryland and now the upcoming game at Rutgers, Young fell from No. 2 to No. 5 in the latest rankings:
Notable: Young sat out OSU’s blowout win over Maryland Saturday because of a possible NCAA violation. The latest news is that the Buckeyes expect Young to be handed a four-game suspension for accepting a loan from a family friend. Any absence puts a huge dent in Young’s Heisman candidacy, which was picking up steam the past two weeks.
Quotable: “Chase Young has proven what a great player he is. … He’s the best player in [the 2020 NFL] draft.” — ESPN’s Mel Kiper Jr.
Young may no longer really be in the Heisman race, but Ohio State will get a healthy, anxious, and angry defensive end when he returns, which only means bad things for opposing offenses. Good luck, Penn State, Michigan, and whoever else lies ahead for the Buckeyes.
Bovada‘s top-10 Heisman odds:
Some key things to notice in the odds: