Urban Meyer on Grant: 'He's the Starting Middle Linebacker at Ohio State'

Austin KempAnalyst IApril 11, 2013

COLUMBUS, OH - NOVEMBER 24:  Head coach Urban Meyer of the Ohio State Buckeyes shouts instructions to his team during the first half of a game against the Michigan Wolverines at Ohio Stadium on November 24, 2012 in Columbus, Ohio. Ohio State defeated Michigan 26-21.  (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)
Jamie Sabau/Getty Images

On Wednesday afternoon head coach Urban Meyer had some news on Curtis Grant which he shared with reporters

“He’s the starting middle linebacker at Ohio State as of right now.”  

It feels as if every Buckeye fan around the world has been waiting to hear this news, and thus far this spring, Grant has done nothing but good, improving his football skills each and every day.

One of the most heralded recruits in the class of 2011, being ranked the No. 1 outside linebacker prospect according to Scout.com, it took some time for Grant to adjust to the collegiate game. 

Standing at 6’3", 240 pounds, Grant has all the physical tools to be one the most dominant linebackers in the country.

As a sophomore last season, we saw the Virginia native start early in the season.  However, he wasn’t producing the results the coaches wanted to see and eventually was replaced by Zach Boren.

That’s a thing of the past now, as Grant has become an upperclassman and will look to lead the Buckeyes defense in 2013.  “He wasn’t fully engaged [last season].  He is a fully engaged guy right now,” Meyer acclaimed of Grant.

The emergence of Grant will potentially fill a huge hole on the Ohio State defense.  With a young front seven, stability from the linebacker unit will be key. 

Ryan Shazier is the only proven player on that unit so the Buckeyes have been scampering to find a few more.  With Josh Perry and David Perkins also seeing first-team reps this spring, it’s nice to hear that a veteran like Grant has stepped up.  

Though this position battle will likely head into fall camp, Meyer and his staff should take a sigh of relief that they have seen the talented Grant finally come into his own.  With Mike Mitchell arriving in the fall, expect him to push for playing time as well.  However, if the switch has flipped for Grant, like Meyer has said, it’ll be tough to take anything away from No. 14.

The Buckeye’s defense in 2013 has a chance to be one of the fastest and most physical we’ve seen in the past couple of years, and Grant has a chance to be the anchor of it.

Check out Grant and the rest of the Ohio State Buckeyes April 13, as their spring game will be aired on Big Ten Network.