J.T. Barrett Named Starter vs. Wisconsin in Big 10 Championship Game

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistDecember 3, 2017

ANN ARBOR, MI - NOVEMBER 25: J.T. Barrett #16 of the Ohio State Buckeyes calls a play first half against the Michigan Wolverines on November 25, 2017 at Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor, Michigan. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

Six days after having surgery on his right knee, Ohio State quarterback J.T. Barrett will start Saturday's Big Ten Championship Game against Wisconsin. 

Eleven Warriors reported the Buckeyes' decision to start Barrett over redshirt freshman Dwayne Haskins as they look to secure a conference title. 

Tim May of the Columbus Dispatch reported Barrett underwent arthroscopic surgery to remove torn meniscus from his knee and was expected to play against Wisconsin, though it wasn't clear at that point how big his role would be. 

Barrett left Ohio State's 31-20 win over Michigan last week with a knee injury. Head coach Urban Meyer told reporters after the game the injury involved a cameraman making contact with the quarterback.

Per Ari Wasserman of The Athletic, Barrett said he didn't think the cameraman was intentionally trying to hurt him. Meyer requested an investigation into the situation. 

Haskins' performance in relief of Barrett against Michigan certainly gave Meyer confidence that he could handle himself in a marquee game. The Maryland native went 6-of-7 for 94 yards and ran for 24 yards on three carries. 

Barrett, though, has been Ohio State's leader on offense for four years. He overcame a slow start this season to enter the Big Ten title game with 2,728 passing yards, 672 rushing yards and 42 total touchdowns. 

The Buckeyes need to make a statement against undefeated Wisconsin if they want to climb back into the top four of the College Football Playoff rankings. Barrett's presence under center gives them their best chance to do it.    

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