Aug. 22, 2000

Split end Reggie Germany led Ohio State in receiving last year with 43 receptions. Flanker Ken-Yon Rambo was a close second with 41. Together, they accounted for 1,489 yards and seven touchdowns as first-year starters. But there was a dramatic drop-off after that. Tailback Michael Wiley was the next leading receiver with 14 receptions. No one else was in double figures.

That should change this year.

With Germany and Rambo both returning, the Buckeyes have a pair of established veterans on the flanks. Additionally, seniors Chad Cacchio and Vaness Provitt have had solid fall camps and seem poised for productive years. Throw in Drew Carter and Ricky Bryant, a pair of extremely talented redshirt freshmen, and the picture really brightens. And just for good measure, receivers’ coach Tim Salem has four very promising first-year players in Michael Jenkins, John Hollins Andrew Lee and Maurice Lee.

“This is the deepest group of receivers we have had since I have been at Ohio State,” said Salem, now in his fourth season with the Buckeyes. “They are a very talented group as a whole. I like their athletic ability, their speed and their quickness. But what I like most is their attitude. They are all working to get better. Our seniors are showing great leadership, and the younger players are working hard to learning the system. “Ken-Yon and Reggie are our starters, but it doesn’t stop there in terms of talent. I think the competition has made everyone better.”

The Buckeyes practiced twice on Monday in preparation for their upcoming season opener, Sept. 2, against visiting Fresno State.

“We had good practices today,” said head coach John Cooper. “The hot weather has helped us from the standpoint of conditioning and the players are working very hard.”