Spring game preview: Ohio State


Three spring games are on tap Saturday around the Big Ten, and we're taking a look at each one.

Let's finish today's roundup by examining the LiFE Sports Spring Game at Ohio State.

When: 1:30 p.m. ET, Saturday

Where: Ohio Stadium

Admission: Tickets are $7 in advance and $15 on game day (cash only). Ohio State students and children under 6 are admitted free. Stadium gates open at 10 a.m. ET. Parking is free at lots around stadium except West Stadium and East Stadium lots.

TV: The Big Ten Network will televise the game live. It will also stream live online at BTN2Go.

Weather forecast: Partly cloudy, temperatures between 49-54 degrees, 10-20 percent chance of rain, winds at 13-14 mph.

What to watch for: The Buckeyes will pit the Scarlet team (coached by offensive coordinator Tom Herman) against the Gray team (coached by defensive coordinator Luke Fickell). The coaches held a draft Thursday morning, and here are the rosters. Herman's squad definitely looks stronger on offense with starting quarterback Braxton Miller and four of five projected starters along the offensive line. Fickell's team is stronger in the defensive back seven. The coaches have been talking trash to one another on Twitter (@CoachTomHerman, @CoachFick, @CoachVrabel50, @CoachZachSmith). Good times.

It's the first spring game under new Ohio State coach Urban Meyer, who, along with Herman, has spent the spring installing his up-tempo, spread offense. Don't expect the Buckeyes to show too much Saturday, but the fact they'll be running a no-huddle, spread-based offense with unique personnel groupings and triple-option elements will be a sight to behold for Ohio State fans. It will be interesting to watch the flow of the offense and how many breakdowns occur. Miller won't be live, but he'll be in the spotlight as he runs a system suited to his skill set, but still complex and new.

Meyer has been candid about the need for Ohio State to develop more weapons around Miller. Will a perimeter player or two emerge Saturday? It's possible. Running backs Jordan Hall (Gray) and Carlos Hyde (Scarlet) and tight end Jake Stoneburner, who should see his receptions total skyrocket in this offense, also will be worth watching.

The defense went through some offseason changes, but the scheme will remain mostly the same as Luke Fickell takes over as coordinator. It will be interesting to watch young defenders who played a lot in 2011 but will be counted on even more this season, players like defensive tackle Johnathan Hankins, cornerback Bradley Roby and linebacker Ryan Shazier.