Ohio State wide receiver Chris Olave’s decision to return for his senior season shocked a lot of people who expected the junior to turn pro.
Olave was regarded as a potential late first-round pick by NFL draft prognosticators. Instead, he will head back to Columbus to try and boost his draft stock and win a national title.
ESPN’s Todd McShay admitted yesterday that he was one of the people who didn’t think Olave would be back. He pegged the perimeter playmaker as someone who would “at worst case” be taken in the second round.
“I was a little bit surprised that Olave decided to return,” McShay said Tuesday on ESPN’s First Draft podcast. “I know he didn’t have his best game in the national championship game, but he had a great season and he’s been a really consistent, good player. Plus, you know you’re losing your quarterback and I know they’ve got the next one up at Oho State, they always do, but to see Olave not on that list was surprising to me.”
Despite missing the Big Ten Championship Game due to COVID-19, Olave still led the Buckeyes in all three major receiving categories in 2020. He caught 50 passes for 729 yards and seven touchdowns.
In the College Football Playoff semifinal win over Clemson in the Sugar Bowl, Olave exploded for 132 receiving yards and two touchdowns on six receptions. He followed that up with 69 yards on eight catches against Alabama.
Whoever takes over for Justin Fields at quarterback for Ohio State–CJ Stroud, Jack Miller and Kyle McCord will compete for the job–will have a bevy of weapons to throw to at wide receiver. In addition to Olave, Garrett Wilson is back after a strong sophomore season, and promising freshmen Jaxon Smith-Njigba and Julian Fleming will be one year older.
Additionally, the Buckeyes signed five-star Emeka Egbuka, the No. 1 wide receiver in the 2021 class, as well as four-star prospects Jayden Ballard and Marvin Harrison Jr.
[ 247Sports ]