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LB Malik Harrison (1st Team All B1G, 3rd Team All-American, Baltimore Ravens)

Discussion in 'Buckeye Alumni' started by MD Buckeye, Dec 4, 2015.

  1. scarletngray

    scarletngray Gold Pants

    Brought the lumber on Saturday.
  2. ScriptOhio

    ScriptOhio Everybody is somebody else's weirdo.

    brodybuck21 and scarletngray like this.
  3. Dryden

    Dryden Sober as Sarkisian Staff Member Tech Admin

    Malik Harrison’s final act and a reminder of Luke Fickell’s mark on Ohio State
    By Bill Landis

    COLUMBUS, Ohio — Kevin Wilson walked out of the Ohio State coaching staff war room Tuesday afternoon, took a left at the end of the hall and then a quick right into the tight ends’ room. The staff was preparing for a team meeting at 2:30 p.m. and then breakout sessions with their position groups before resuming practice for this week’s game against Cincinnati. There’s an alternative version of this story in which Buckeyes linebacker Malik Harrison would be one of the players sitting in Wilson’s meeting room.

    Go back four years to when Harrison was still at Walnut Ridge High School and every college coach who walked through those main doors off of Livingston Avenue on the east side of Columbus had a different vision for what Harrison would be. He was a quarterback, receiver, running back, safety and linebacker for the Scots, basically whatever coach Byron Mattox needed him to be week to week.

    Wisconsin, which had the advantage of signing a couple of Walnut Ridge players in previous recruiting classes, saw Harrison as a tight end. Wilson, who was the head coach at Indiana at the time and an offensive guy his entire career, saw a 6-foot-4, 220-pound kid who could be a monster receiver.

    “We were throwing the ball a lot, had some big receivers that had done really well and he was an offensive guy, such a skilled basketball player,” Wilson said. “He’s transitioned into being a tremendous linebacker for us, but I thought he could’ve been a heck of an offensive player.”

    Then-Ohio State assistant Luke Fickell had Harrison pegged as a linebacker, but mostly saw an under-the-radar talent that the Buckeyes would be crazy to let get away. It was just a matter of whether Urban Meyer would ever come on board with an offer for a three-star local kid who oozed potential but maybe didn’t have an obvious natural position. We know by now how that turned out.

    “We were in it heavy,” Wilson said, “and I actually thought if he hadn’t been offered here, we had a legitimate shot to get him.”

    That’s how Harrison nearly became a receiver in one of Wilson’s explosive Indiana offenses. When he got to Ohio State, it was still unclear where he’d end up. Meyer mentioned defensive end, linebacker or tight end as potential endgames for Harrison during his National Signing Day news conference in 2016. Harrison settled at linebacker, where he’ll help guide the defense in an intriguing matchup against Fickell’s Bearcats this Saturday. On one side you’ll have a former Buckeyes player and coach coming back home looking to spring an upset; and on the other a star-studded roster with remnants of the kind of lower-rated local players whom Fickell always championed even as Meyer scoured the country for blue-chippers and chased recruiting titles.

    If not for an offer in the eleventh hour, which came in December of his senior year after Fickell’s constant lobbying, Harrison could be at Indiana or Wisconsin, and likely on the other side of the ball. Now he’s thriving at linebacker, serving as good of an example as any of Fickell’s eye for local talent, and how his fighting for spots for those players often turned out well for Ohio State.

    In last Saturday’s season-opening win against Florida Atlantic, Harrison had five tackles, two for loss, and a sack. Two of those tackles, one on a running back in the backfield and another on a tight end coming across the middle of the field, were among that hardest hits handed out by a Buckeyes defender over the last few years. It was one game, but if there was a poster boy for the new defensive staff’s promises of fast and sound play, it was Harrison.

    “It’s allowing us to play,” Harrison said. “You see us having fun. Not really thinking and just go out and play.”

    Cont'd ...
    brodybuck21 likes this.
  4. brodybuck21

    brodybuck21 THE OHIO STATE UNIVERSITY Staff Member Fantasy Baseball Champ

    dude is such a beast. been a fan of his ever since my son's high school scrimmaged ridge. he wouldn't stop raving about what an athlete malik was
    DaddyBigBucks likes this.
  5. brodybuck21

    brodybuck21 THE OHIO STATE UNIVERSITY Staff Member Fantasy Baseball Champ

    6 — Senior linebacker Malik Harrison has 6.0 tackles for loss, which is good for sixth in the nation and second in the Big Ten behind Michigan State defensive end Kenny Willekes’ 6.5.
  6. ScriptOhio

    ScriptOhio Everybody is somebody else's weirdo.



    Well before the end of his junior season, Malik Harrison had already made up his mind. Even though an NFL team likely would have selected him in the draft this spring, he planned to return for one more year at Ohio State.

    In the final games of the 2018 season, Harrison finally began to scratch his potential. The 6-foot-3, 240-pound specimen, who has enough athleticism to have thrived on the basketball court at Walnut Ridge, had 10 tackles in the Big Ten title game against Northwestern and racked up seven tackles with two tackles for loss and a sack in the 62-39 destruction of Michigan.

    This year, he has appeared to take his game to another level. Through three games, Harrison has 14 tackles, including six tackles for loss and a pair of sacks.

    “I anticipated this last year when I was making my decision,” Harrison said on Wednesday. “I'm glad to be back.”

    Thus far, he doesn’t have any regrets, and if he continues playing this way, he’ll almost certainly end up as a higher NFL draft pick next spring than he would have been had he left college after his junior season.

    First-year linebackers coach Al Washington has played a significant role in Harrison’s development. Ever since the preseason, Harrison has cited Washington’s lending him added confidence as one of the reasons for him feeling better this fall than in years past.

    “I'm playing faster and just having fun,” Harrison said. “Last year, I felt like I wasn't really confident in my game. But this year coming out, well the last couple games, I started to build up my confidence. These first three games, just building up every day, stacking my chips.”

    As he stacks those chips, he’s thinking big.

    Harrison said he and Washington have had “numerous conversations” about him developing into one of the best linebackers in the nation. On Tuesday, having seen Harrison play well for three weeks in a row, Washington verbalized that thought to the public.

    “I think Malik has a chance to be one of the best in the country, and I'll tell him that,” Washington said. “I'm honest. I think he has the ability, but you've got to exercise that ability every day.”

    Entire article:
    bucknut502 and brodybuck21 like this.
  7. ScriptOhio

    ScriptOhio Everybody is somebody else's weirdo.

  8. brodybuck21

    brodybuck21 THE OHIO STATE UNIVERSITY Staff Member Fantasy Baseball Champ

  9. RhodeIslandBuck

    RhodeIslandBuck I Got Game

    One of the least talked about All-American quality seasons in recent memory.
    brodybuck21 and ShowMeBuck like this.
  10. Buckeye86

    Buckeye86 I do not choose to discuss it

    Are we going by Jabrill Pepper standards? Because he no doubt is a solid LB who has consistently performed well all season, but his stats are nowhere near what I’d typically consider All-American caliber.

    Edit: his tfl is elite at 14.5, his sacks are good at 4.5, his total tackles is middle of the pack at 61. Hawk and Laurinaitis, and most other LBs not named Peppers, are at 100 if not well over it in their AA seasons.
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2019
  11. Onebuckfan

    Onebuckfan classof76

    He could be featured more in the D. He does the Grunt work and erases mistakes when the front four isn’t assignment sound.
  12. RhodeIslandBuck

    RhodeIslandBuck I Got Game

    He might not be an All-American at seasons end because of not playing enough ball (consequences of blowing everybody out) to put up huge tackles numbers.

    That being said, his quality of play when he's on the field is, IMO, All-American.
  13. OregonBuckeye

    OregonBuckeye Semper Fi Buckeyes

    His tackle numbers would be higher on a worse defense and a worse team. He's definitely an AA-quality LB
    brodybuck21 and Fungo Squiggly like this.
  14. RB07OSU

    RB07OSU #7 aka Vick the human joystick Staff Member BP Recruiting Team

    Malik is having a real nice season. He is an excellent LB, but his stats are a casualty to our DL. Our DL gets to the ball before Malik gets a chance. I call that a good problem. But for real, its going to be awhile before anyone convinces me that we have a LB in the ballpark of Hawk...that dude was the real deal.
    brodybuck21 likes this.
  15. brodybuck21

    brodybuck21 THE OHIO STATE UNIVERSITY Staff Member Fantasy Baseball Champ

    4 pairs of gold pants. Well done young man. Special powers indeed

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