This is the fourth installment in a series where Buckeye Huddle looks back on each member of Ohio State’s 2023 signing class and the impact they had as rookies, as well as the impact they could have during the upcoming 2024 season. Up next is offensive lineman Luke Montgomery.
Luke Montgomery came to Ohio State from Findlay, Ohio where he was one of the top two or three Ohio prospects in the 2023 recruiting class. He was a two-time All-State performer on the offensive line. Also, as a sophomore at Findlay, he was a Second-Team All-State defensive lineman. He also played tight end prior to moving to the offensive line.
Montgomery was ranked the No. 3 interior lineman in the nation per the 247Sports Composite, and the No. 92 player overall. He signed with Ohio State over offers from Alabama, Clemson, Georgia, Florida State, Michigan, Notre Dame, and everybody else.
Luke Montgomery was one of four offensive linemen signed by Ohio State in 2023 and all four enrolled early. Pretty early on in spring practice, Montgomery was impressing. His performance in the spring continued into summer workouts, which had head coach Ryan Day already touting him prior to fall camp last year.
“He’s in the competition right now,” Day said. “I told him the other day, I said, ‘I know you’re a true freshman, but you came here to play. So that should be your mentality.’ Now, whether you play in the first game or not, I don’t know. Maybe you don’t play this year, but I just see things in him, we see things in him that are very encouraging. And I think everything you invest in Luke, you’re gonna get back. He has all the traits you look for in a really good offensive lineman. But maybe it’s game three, maybe it’s game four, I don’t know what it’s going to be. But he’s got a huge upside as well.”
Montgomery didn’t win a starting job, but ended up being valuable member of the two-deep. He was a backup at right tackle and was also used at times as an extra tight end in jumbo packages. Montgomery played in 11 of Ohio State’s 13 games this past season, seeing time on offense in nine of those games. He ended up playing the seventh-most snaps among the offensive linemen and was the only true freshman lineman who played last year.
So Now What For Luke Montgomery?
The Buckeyes are only replacing one departed starter on their offensive line. Right guard Matt Jones has moved on after six seasons at Ohio State. This is a void that could be filled by Montgomery. Despite Montgomery’s background as an offensive tackle, OSU offensive line coach Justin Frye will be looking for his five best offensive linemen. If Montgomery is one of those five, there will be a spot for him.
Tackles playing guard is not new at Ohio State, as NFL starting tackles Thayer Munford and Paris Johnson both moonlighted at guard for a season as Buckeyes. Montgomery could also stay at right tackle and Ohio State could move last year’s starting right tackle Josh Fryar to right guard. Spring practice will shake some things out, and then fall camp will shape it up.
One thing that isn’t in doubt is that Ryan Day has been high on Montgomery from the outset. Day and Frye moved him around last year to find out where he could help the team the best, and they could do the same thing this spring.
Montgomery was the seventh man last year. It won’t be a surprise when he’s in the top five this season.