The Ohio State Buckeyes and head coach Urban Meyer were very excited during the offseason about a player they said had “electric speed”. That player was freshman running back Dontre Wilson.
If Wilson is so good, then why haven’t we seen more of him this season?
Meyer says it’s because they want him to become a more complete football player first, saying that right now he is just a “novelty” until he learns how to be a better all-around player. He needs to learn to block, run routes, and all that so he can be doing something on plays when he doesn’t get the ball. Meyer and offensive coordinator Tom Herman are slowly trying to work him into the offense so that he can get some experience.
They want it to get to the point where Wilson can run out onto the field and opposing defenses won’t change just because he is out there. Right now that’s what is happening because they’ve all heard about his speed. Once he is a better all-around player, he won’t be in there to run the ball every time. He could be running a route or blocking instead.
This situation with Wilson is similar to what happened to Ohio State receiver Evan Spencer. Spencer wasn’t getting much playing time and was being overshadowed by fellow receivers Devin Smith and Corey “Philly” Brown. That is, until Spencer showed Meyer that he could be more than just a receiver. He would show off his blocking skills anytime he got into the game, and Meyer was so impressed with his blocking that he gave him more playing time. Spencer even caught a touchdown pass in the Wisconsin Badgers game.
Maybe Spencer could take Wilson under his wing and teach him how to run routes and be a good blocker.
Like Spencer, Wilson also got some playing time in the Wisconsin game. He touched the ball three times, catching a pass for 21 yards and carrying the ball twice for 21 yards. He didn’t have any touches in the Northwestern Wildcats game and was only in for a handful of plays plus on kickoff returns.
We should see more and more of Wilson as he develops into a better all-around player. If he proves himself the way that Spencer did, then he could get more playing time in no time. Meyer just wants to make sure that he is known as more than a running back with “electric speed”, and for good reason. Defenses don’t need to know what to expect when Wilson comes in. This way Meyer can mix it up and they can use Wilson’s speed when they need it.
Keep an eye out for No. 1. He will be even more impressive once he develops himself and could be pretty unstoppable with that speed. Opposing defenses won’t know what to do with him.