COLUMBUS — Ohio State will be without starting cornerback Denzel Burke and starting running back TreVeyon Henderson for Saturday’s game against No. 7 Penn State, and they could be without starting slot receiver Emeka Egbuka as well.
Burke left last week’s game at Purdue with an undisclosed injury and did not return. In his place, the Buckeyes went with a combination of true freshman Jermaine Mathews, Jr. and junior Jordan Hancock.
Hancock has been Ohio State’s No. 1 nickel back on passing downs this season, but has always played plenty of cornerback. He could be the choice to start in Burke’s place this week, but could also continue to move to nickel on passing downs and then Mathews will take his place outside at cornerback.
Obviously, this is not an ideal situation for a true freshman, but the coaching staff is very high on Mathews.
TreVeyon Henderson is now missing his third-consecutive game for the Buckeyes. He has not played since he rushed for 104 yards against Notre Dame. Miyan Williams missed last week’s game but is not listed on this week’s report, so he should be good to go.
Chip Trayanum started last week’s game at running back but left with an injury early on. He is also absent from this week’s injury report, so he seems likely to play as well.
Sophomore Dallan Hayden stepped up last week when Trayanum went down and rushed for 76 yards on 11 carries. With Trayanum and Williams presumably back, Hayden may once again spend this game saving his redshirt.
Emeka Egbuka missed last week’s game with an ankle injury and is listed as a game-time decision. Without him against Purdue, the Buckeyes found more snaps for Xavier Johnson and freshman Carnell Tate. Johnson rushed for 39 yards and caught a 21-yard pass against the Boilers. Tate caught three passes for 79 yards.
If Egbuka can go, he would again give the Buckeyes one of the top receivers in the nation, and a guy that OSU quarterback Kyle McCord knows that he can rely on. Egbuka has 22 receptions for 303 yards this season, with three touchdown catches. He is also the team’s top punt returner, which could be a significant loss for the team as well.
You can find the full availability report below.
WR Nolan Baudo
CB Denzel Burke
RB Timothy Caffey
WR Kyion Grayes
RB TreVeyon Henderson
TE Zak Herbstreit
TE Joe Royer
DT Will Smith
WR Reis Stocksdale
LB Kourt Williams