Aug. 6, 2006

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COLUMBUS, Ohio – Ohio State football practice begins its sixth season under the direction of head coach Jim Tressel Monday. The team reported to camp Sunday.

Ohio State was the media pick as the preseason favorite to win the 2006 Big Ten Championship last week in Chicago. A championship would mark the third title in five years for Tressel’s Buckeyes. The preseason acclaim is just another bit of notoriety for a team some have picked to challenge for the national championship.

Helping lead the team this year is a group of 19 seniors, including 16 who are in their fifth year as Buckeyes. A majority of the class was on the roster for the 2002 national championship season, has been a part of two Big Ten championship teams and has won three BCS games.

The team returns 43 lettermen from a squad that finished 7-1 to tie Penn State for the Big Ten title and beat Notre Dame 34-20 in the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl, finishing fourth in the nation with a 10-2 record. Ohio State returns 10 starters, including eight from an offense that averaged almost 33 points and 423 yards per game a season ago.