Aug. 2, 2011

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Heading into the first full week of NFL training camps, 47 Ohio State Buckeyes – the most of any Big Ten Conference school – appear on active rosters of 22 teams in the National Football League. The St. Louis Rams lead the way with five former Buckeyes while the Minnesota Vikings and the San Francisco 49ers each have four former Buckeyes on their fall camp active roster.

Ohio State’s total could grow, as well, with several former players listed as unrestricted free agents and seeking to sign a contract.

A total of 344 players from the Big Ten are currently on NFL active rosters. After Ohio State’s total of 47 is Iowa with 42 NFL roster players, Nebraska with 37, and Michigan and Penn State round out the Top 5 with 35 players apiece. Wisconsin and Illinois have 30 players apiece in camp and are followed by Michigan State (25) and Purdue (24) with Northwestern, Minnesota and Indiana all tied with 13 players. (Note: the Big Ten school’s totals were as of Monday morning, Aug. 1.)

Ohio State also has six of its former players coaching in the NFL – Jeff Davidson (Minnesota), Pepper Johnson (New England), Dick LeBeau (Pittsburgh), Fred Pagac (Minnesota), Tim Spencer (Chicago) and Tim Walton (Detroit).

And at least seven former assistant coaches/graduate assistants at Ohio State are also coaching in the NFL.

The complete list of Buckeyes in the NFL (based on roster checks of all 32 teams on and on each team’s official web site) is below:

Arizona Cardinals
 RB Beanie Wells -3rd year

Baltimore Ravens
 OG Justin Boren – Rookie
 LS Kevin Houser – 11th year (currently an unrestricted free agent)

Buffalo Bills
 S Donte Whitner – 6th year (currently an unrestricted free agent)
 CB Ashton Youboty – 6th year (currently an unrestricted free agent)

Carolina Panthers
 CB Chris Gamble – 8th year
 TE Ben Hartsock – 8th year

Chicago Bears
 LB Vernon Gholston – 4th year
 WR Dane Sanzenbacher – Rookie

Cincinnati Bengals
 DB Nate Clements – 11th year
 K Mike Nugent – 7th year

Cleveland Browns
 WR Brian Robiskie – 3rd year

Detroit Lions
 LB Bobby Carpenter – 6th year (currently an unrestricted free agent)
 DT Quinn Pitcock – 5th year
 OG Rob Sims – 6th year

Green Bay Packers
 LB A.J. Hawk – 6th year
 DT Ryan Pickett – 11th year
 RB Brandon Saine – Rookie

Indianapolis Colts
 WR Anthony Gonzalez – 5th year

Kansas City Chiefs
 DB Donald Washington – 3rd year

Miami Dolphins
 WR Brian Hartline – 3rd year
 DE Robert Rose – 2nd year
 Austin Spitler – 2nd year

Minnesota Vikings
 LB Ross Homan – Rookie
 WR Michael Jenkins – 8th year
 DB Devon Torrence – Rookie
 DB Antoine Winfield – 13th year

New Orleans Saints
 DB Malcolm Jenkins – 3rd year
 DT Dexter Larimore – Rookie
 DE Will Smith – 8th year

New York Giants
 TE Jake Ballard – 2nd year
 OC Jim Cordle – 2nd year

New York Jets
 WR Santonio Holmes – 6th year
 OC Nick Mangold – 6th year

Oakland Raiders
 DB Chimdi Chekwa – Rookie

Philadelphia Eagles
 DB Kurt Coleman – 2nd year
 LB Brian Rolle – Rookie

Pittsburgh Steelers
 DB Will Allen – 8th year
 DE Cam Heyward – Rookie

San Francisco 49ers
 OT Alex Boone – 2nd year
 DE Thaddeus Gibson – 2nd year
 WR Ted Ginn – 5th year
 LB Larry Grant – 4th year

St. Louis Rams
 OG Bryant Browning – Rookie
 LB Na’il Diggs – 12th year
 DB Jermale Hines – Rookie
 LB James Laurinaitis – 3rd year
 LS Jake McQuaide – Rookie

Tampa Bay Buccaneers
 DT Doug Worthington – 1st year

Washington Redskins
 DB Anderson Russell – 2nd year
 DE Darrion Scott – 5th year

Ohio State NFL Coaching Ties:
 Dom Capers – defensive coordinator, Green Bay Packers (Ohio State assistant coach 1982-83)
 Pete Carroll – head coach, Seattle Seahawks (Ohio State assistant coach 1979)
 Larry Coyer – defensive coordinator, Indianapolis Colts (Ohio State assistant coach 1991-92)
 *Jeff Davidson – offensive line coach, Minnesota Vikings (played at Ohio State 1986-88)
 *Pepper Johnson – defensive line, New England Patriots (played at Ohio State 1982-85)
 *Dick LeBeau – defensive coordinator, Pittsburgh Steelers (played at Ohio State 1955-58)
 *Fred Pagac – defensive coordinator, Minnesota (played at Ohio State 1971-73; Ohio State assistant coach 1978-2000)
 Rob Ryan – defensive coordinator, Dallas Cowboys (Ohio State graduate assistant coach in 1988)
 Lovie Smith – head coach, Chicago Bears (Ohio State assistant coach in 1995)
 *Tim Spencer – running backs coach, Chicago Bears (played at Ohio State 1979-82; Ohio State assistant from 1994-2003)
 Mel Tucker – defensive coordinator, Jacksonville (Ohio State assistant coach 2001-04)
 Bobby Turner – assistant head coach/running backs coach, Washington Redskins (Ohio State assistant 1989-90)
 *Tim Walton – secondary coach, Detroit Lions (played for Ohio State 1990-93)

*Played at Ohio State