B/R's Ohio State Lead Writer Has a Freshman to Watch at the Percy Position

David RegimbalFeatured ColumnistAugust 28, 2013

COLUMBUS, OH - NOVEMBER 24: The Ohio State Marching Band performs the Script Ohio before the game against the Michigan Wolverines at Ohio Stadium on November 24, 2012 in Columbus, Ohio. (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)
Jamie Sabau/Getty Images

The amount of cheese you get when you order nachos at an Ohio State basketball game is, in a word, unnecessary.

I learned that on November 29, 2011the night Ohio State hosted Duke as part of the ACC-Big Ten challenge.

I was carrying the nachos I had just ordered back to the media room, careful not to spill any of the piping-hot cheese that was threatening to flow over at any moment, when I rounded a corner to the main hallway.

I didn't see Dick Vitale coming.

Fortunately, he didn't make the same mistake. In a move that defied his age and the basic principles of inertia, Vitale sidestepped both me and the overflowing cheese that could have ruined his suit just 20 minutes before appearing on national television.

"Oh, that was a close one, young man," Vitale said. "Looks like it's our lucky night!"

I stood there, not knowing what to say, watching the surprisingly agile Vitale head for his courtside seat.


My name is David Regimbal, and I have been covering Ohio State football and basketball since the fall of 2009.

I started as a blogger for the good folks at BucksInsider.com before interning at TheClevelandFan.com in February of 2010.  Shortly after, I was promoted to provide the main coverage for the Ohio State basketball team. It was an incredible opportunity that netted a season press pass to cover the 2011-12 Buckeyes.

Despite doing radio interviews with ESPN affiliates or conversing with Aaron Craft about the perfect alley-oop, my crowning achievement as a media member is, most likely, not smashing into Vitale with nacho cheese.

Bleacher Report brought me on in August of 2012 to be the lead Ohio State football writer. Feel free to drop a question for me in the comments section, and I'll do my best to answer. You can also hit me up on Twitter @davidreg412.

Here's a bit more about me.


Athlete or Coach You'd Love to Interview

It would be amazing to interview LSU coach Les Miles, but I wouldn't ask a single thing about football. Miles is crazy enough to eat grass on the sidelines on national television, so I'd love to hear him answer questions like:

Have you ever eaten a bowl of chili with your bare hands? Is the voice commonly known as Siri from the iPhone just a sorcerer collecting intimate details of our lives? What does the color purple sound like?

And if you were wondering, yes, this is why I wasn't brought on to cover LSU football.

An Ohio State figure I'd love to interview would be former coach Jim Tressel. His time in Columbus ended before I started covering the team in a legitimate role. 


Best Team You've Covered

That distinction belongs to the 2010-11 Ohio State basketball team.

Led by seniors David Lighty and Jon Diebler and complemented by freshmen talents such as Jared Sullinger, Deshaun Thomas and Craft, the Buckeyes looked as bulletproof as any team could entering the tournament.

I was courtside for Ohio State's blowout victories over UTSA and George Mason in the opening rounds, but the Buckeyes fell to Kentucky in a huge upset in the Sweet 16.


Most Memorable Game Ever Attended

My first trip to Columbus for an Ohio State football game came during the 2006 season, when the Buckeyes faced off against Minnesota.

That game featured one of the most devastating hits I've ever seen, whether live or on television, when Ray Small took a bubble pass from Troy Smith late in the second quarter and was blown up by Dominic Jones.

If anyone ever asks me what it sounds like when a man's soul leaves his body, I'll try to explain the crunch of that collision and how it echoed its way to my seat in the C-deck of Ohio Stadium.


Which Big Ten Team Poses the Biggest Threat to the Buckeyes?

It has to be Michigan, right?

With Brady Hoke at the helm, the Wolverines are the only team recruiting at the same level as Urban Meyer and the Buckeyes. Michigan enters the season ranked No. 17, the second highest ranking in the conference behind No. 2 Ohio State, and this year's matchup will be played in Ann Arbor.

The Buckeyes have a trio of tricky games early. A night game on the road against a solid Northwestern team could be dangerous, and Ohio State hosts Wisconsin and Penn State under the lights in the 'Shoe.

Michigan still gets the nod here, at least in my book.


Which OSU Defensive Player Is Most Vital to Buckeyes Success in 2013?

Middle linebacker Curtis Grant will have to play at a high level for the Buckeyes to succeed this year.

Grant won the starting spot last year, but he struggled early against spread teams who got him in space. That put a strain on the entire defense, which resulted in a number of uncharacteristic performances (read: Cal gaining more than 500 yards of total offense).

When Meyer finally pulled Grant and replaced him with converted fullback Zach Boren, who played surprisingly well down the stretch, the Buckeyes' defense started playing up to the standards Buckeyes fans expect.

Ohio State is replacing six starters in its front seven defensively, so the Buckeyes can't afford Grant under-performing.


Will Braxton Miller Win the Heisman?

If he stays healthy and Ohio State goes 13-0, then yes.

In that scenario, Miller would be riding a 25-game winning streak as the starting quarterback of a team getting ready to play for a national title. When you combine that with the huge numbers Miller will post in Meyer's spread offense, it will be hard for Heisman voters to choose a different candidate.


Who Is the Best Fit for the Percy Position?

Finding a player to fill that role as effectively as Percy Harvin is almost impossible, but Meyer landed an outstanding candidate in freshman Dontre Wilson.

Wilson has spent the majority of fall camp blowing his teammates and coaches away with his playmaking ability, whether it be from the backfield or lined up in the slot. Wilson will see a lot of action this year, and Buckeyes fans should be just as excited to see him on the field as the coaches and players are.

As a senior in high school, Wilson rushed for 1,895 yards and 37 touchdowns while adding 750 receiving yards and nine touchdowns, according to 247Sports.com. See him in action here:


2013 Season Prediction for Ohio State

Predicting another undefeated season for the Buckeyes would require me to ignore a lot of history that suggests Ohio State is destined for a loss at some point this year.

Regardless of how strong a team is, going undefeated is very rare. The Crimson Tide are in the midst of one of the most dominant stretches in college football history, winning three of the last four national titles, but they only have one undefeated season (2009) during that stretch.

Ohio State will likely be favored in every game it plays this year, but upsets happen too frequently to think the Buckeyes will run the table in back-to-back seasons.

I expect the Buckeyes to drop one game during the regular season (don't ask me who they'll lose to). Ohio State will beat Nebraska in the Big Ten title game to earn a bid against Stanford in the Rose Bowl. The Buckeyes will beat the Cardinal 31-16 to finish the season 13-1.