- Dan Graziano, ESPN Staff Writer
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Paul Schwartz of the New York Post called one of Johnathan Hankins' college coaches to get the scoop on the New York Giants' second-round pick. And what Ohio State defensive coordinator Luke Fickell told Paul was to expect ... well, a fat guy:
“He’s not going to have veins in his arms or look like somebody where you’re going to go ‘Oh [expletive],'" Fickell said. “He’s going to have a gigantic smile on his face, he’s going to be happy-go-lucky but his body is not going to impress everybody. It’s not going to be ‘Oh [expletive], there’s Justin Tuck.’ Not going to see the veins bursting out. Like abs, everybody’s got ’em, some are just covered up. His are covered up.’’
What we have here is a roly-poly rookie known as “Big Hank’’ by everyone at Ohio State, a jumbo-sized defensive tackle the Giants believe can consume opposing running games with his girth. When Marc Ross, the Giants’ director of college scouting, described Hankins as a “wide-body’’ he spread his arms out to his sides to indicate a rather large bottom. Based on ability, plenty of scouts had Hankins as a first-round talent. But that body, oh, that body.
“That’s one of those reasons he ends up where he is, there are some negative things,’’ said Fickell, who served as Ohio State’s interim head coach in 2011 after Jim Tressel was suspended and eventually resigned. “He looks fat. He looks chubby. Yeah, he’s not a great-bodied guy.’’
Now, obviously, this isn't any kind of alarm bell. Hankins was a very productive player at Ohio State. Fickell raves in the same story about his balance, and says concerns about his stamina are misguided. And as a run-stuffing defensive tackle, Hankins' primary job is to be in the way, so being really big is probably something of an asset. I just thought this was kind of a funny little note on a guy about whom you'll surely be hearing much more in the coming weeks and months.