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Jonathon Cooper ruled out for Ohio State season opener

Jonathon Cooper-Ohio State-Buckeyes-Ohio State football
Ohio State defensive end Jonathon Cooper will miss the season opener for the Buckeyes. (Birm/Lettermen Row)

Ohio State Football

Jonathon Cooper ruled out for Ohio State season opener

COLUMBUS — Ohio State officially has its first bit of adversity heading into the season opener.

Captain and starting defensive end Jonathon Cooper was ruled out for the matchup on Saturday against Florida Atlantic in the Horseshoe, giving the Buckeyes an early test of the depth of the vaunted Rushmen unit.

Multiple sources have indicated to Lettermen Row that Cooper is dealing with a high-ankle sprain and had a minor medical procedure performed during training camp. But Ohio State has never confirmed any details about Cooper’s injury, and new coach Ryan Day is refusing to answer health questions this season. But the status report released on Friday by the program makes it clear that the talented pass-rusher won’t be available against the Owls.

“As far as Coop goes, he’ll be back soon,” defensive tackle Robert Landers said. “It’s one of those things where we’re just taking it day by day, he’s taking it day by day. He’s a captain of the team, and more importantly, he’s one of the biggest influences and leaders in our room. It’s one of those things where until he’s back in action, it’s next man up.

“Guys have to step up all the way across the board and try to fill that void of him not being there until I don’t know when.”

All the Buckeyes have revealed for certain is that Jonathon Cooper won’t play in Game One. It’s believed the senior could be dealing with the issue for the first couple weeks of the season, but Ohio State isn’t offering any insight beyond the opener for Day as the full-time coach of the program.

That depth up front could be further tested with defensive ends Tyreke Smith and Tyler Friday both listed as game-time decisions for the Buckeyes. Here’s the full availability report as announced on Friday by the program, making note that Ohio State doesn’t differentiate between injuries or disciplinary matters:

Game-Time Decision

DE  Tyler Friday

RB Demario McCall

DE Tyreke Smith

Unavailable

WR Kamryn Babb

TE Rashod Berry

DE Jonathon Cooper

DT Noah Donald

SAF Owen Fankhouser

TE Cormontae Hamilton

SAF Ronnie Hickman

LB Justin Hilliard

CB Lloyd McFarquhar

DT Jaden McKenzie

H-B C.J. Saunders

DT Taron Vincent

G1_Ohio State_DepthChart

 

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Austin Ward is Lettermen Row's senior writer covering Ohio State football and basketball. The award-winning journalist has covered the Buckeyes since 2012, spending five of those seasons working for ESPN after previous stints at the Casper Star-Tribune and Knoxville News Sentinel.

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