Ohio State Overview: Austin Mack is a rapidly rising star among the Ohio State receivers as he enters his true junior season this year … he has career totals of 26 receptions for 358 yards (13.8 average) and two touchdowns … he is a two-year Varsity O letterman and has played in 26 games the past two seasons … he is third among the receivers with 11 career starts … despite an abundance of talented receivers on the roster – seven returning receivers had at least 17 receptions last year – Mack is coming off a fine sophomore campaign when he hauled in 24 passes for 343 yards and two scores, with his touchdowns coming versus Army and Maryland … he had a career-best six-reception-for-90-yards game in the pulsating, 39-38 comeback win over Penn State … he had three receptions in the Cotton Bowl win over USC, for 56 yards … he earned game “champion” status from the OSU coaches seven times in 2017, including in the big wins over Penn State, Michigan State and Wisconsin in the Big Ten title game … Mack was one of six to enroll in classes at Ohio State in January 2016 and he had a productive and impressive spring drills that year, including becoming the first true freshman to have his helmet black stripe removed in the spring, signaling he is doing what it takes to be a key member of the team … is majoring in consumer and family financial services.
Notable Note: Mack made a third-quarter highlight catch and one of the most important catches of the season in the 31-20 win over Michigan last season at Michigan Stadium. Trailing 20-14 with Dwayne Haskins in the game and with Ohio State facing third-and-13 from the OSU 48 after consecutive OSU penalties, the two hooked up on a lovely 27-yard pass play down to the UM 26. Haskins had to thread the needle with a dart to complete the pass between two defenders. Mack had to go upstairs to make the catch and would have to leave the game (so did a UM player) after coming down with the reception. Three plays later the Buckeyes scored and would not trail in the game again.
More on Austin: Mack was a consensus 4-star (Rivals, 247Sports, Scout and ESPN) prospect coming out of high school … he scored 49 career touchdowns, including six on kickoff returns, and had 2,672 career receiving yards off 167 receptions with 24 touchdowns … he gained 718 yards rushing as a senior when injuries forced him into action as a back … still caught 41 passes for 805 yards in 2015 and helped the Knights, coached by Kyle Lindsay, to the third round of the Indiana state playoffs … had a breakout junior season when he caught 69 passes for 1,062 yards and 15 touchdowns … was listed among the Top 12 receiver prospects nationally by 247Sports (No. 10) and Scout (No. 12) … is the son of Shannon and Ernest Mack.