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Scarlet Sunrise: Ohio State LB Justin Hilliard becomes latest Buckeye on injured list

Ohio State-Justin Hilliard-Buckeyes-Ohio State football
Justin Hilliard will miss time after tearing his Achilles. (Birm/Lettermen Row)

Scarlet Sunrise

Scarlet Sunrise: Ohio State LB Justin Hilliard becomes latest Buckeye on injured list

Good morning, Ohio State fans, and welcome to the Scarlet Sunrise! Football will always be our focus, but every day we’ll cover news, notes and analysis from across Buckeyes sports. Join us each morning to get caught up on everything you missed in the world of Ohio State football, recruiting, basketball and more.


Justin Hilliard undergoes surgery

The injury-plagued Ohio State career of Justin Hilliard is once again on hold.

The former five-star linebacker who has previously dealt with separate biceps issues that kept him from tapping into his high-end potential is again going to be on the shelf with the Buckeyes after suffering an Achilles injury last week in spring practice. Sources with direct knowledge of the situation indicated that Hilliard could target a return in the middle of the season, and the senior posted photos on social media of a surgery that was scheduled on Monday morning.

Ohio State confirmed that Hilliard underwent a medical procedure to Lettermen Row on Tuesday.

Hilliard is coming off his most productive campaign with the Buckeyes, finishing with 20 tackles and a tackle for loss while primarily contributing on special teams.

Henry Gray visit ends, where things stand

It was a big recruiting weekend for Ohio State, and the reviews of visits are still tricking in. Here’s Lettermen Row recruiting czar Birm’s take on a talented South Florida prospect the Buckeyes are heavily pursuing:

The Buckeyes are going to be in a battle for Miami Central 4-star cornerback Henry Gray, but after his three-day trip to Ohio State this weekend, it appears they are well positioned to win it.

The nation’s sixth-ranked cornerback arrived in Columbus late Friday night and departed on Tuesday morning. Reports from sources around the program called the visit “awesome,” and they hinted at some confidence they’ve done what was necessary to move the program to the top of the list for the 6-foot, 175-pound Gray and his mother, who accompanied him on the trip.

While I believe that the Buckeyes are in a good spot here, I’m not willing to write it off as a done deal. Gray’s recruitment could still extend for a number of months, the interest in the Clemson football program is very real and I believe ultimately the choice will come down to those two programs. The Buckeyes have a very favorable depth chart for a young cornerback, and that’s appealing to Gray without question.

For more on Ohio State recruiting, check out the Tuesday edition of Dotting the ‘Eyes.

Lettermen Live with J.T. Barrett

Ohio State legend J.T. Barrett joined Zach Boren and George Kauffman for an interesting conversation on Ohio State, the NFL and what it means to be a Buckeye. Don’t miss this special edition of Lettermen Live presented by Byers Auto.

WATCH: J.T. Barrett joins the latest episode of Lettermen Live

Evan Spencer on Chris Olave

The Buckeyes had high hopes for Chris Olave all along or they wouldn’t have made him a recruiting emphasis at the end of the 2018 cycle. But the way he carved out a role and thrived in such meaningful moments has forced a bit of recalibration outside the program, as a player who arrived under the radar and slightly undersized has become a guy with outsized expectations to help lead the passing attack at wideout.

How can Olave keep improving this spring? What’s the next phase of his development? How exactly did he do what he did as a freshman? Former Buckeyes wide receiver Evan Spencer was in the Lettermen Row film lab for the latest episode of BuckIQ looking at exactly what has Olave positioned for more success down the road.

WATCH: Evan Spencer analyzes Chris Olave’s potential

Malik Barrow announces intention to transfer

Ohio State defensive tackle Malik Barrow medically retired in the middle of the 2018 season, bringing his college career to an end. Or so it seemed. After a few months away from the action, Barrow has signaled his intent to return to the gridiron. He was in the transfer portal as early as mid-January but had never formally commented on his situation. That changed when he released a statement on Twitter saying he was attempting to return to football and will have either two or three years left at the team of his choosing.

Counting down

  • Oho State spring game: 17 days
  • NFL Draft: 29 days

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Ryan Ginn

Ryan Ginn has covered Ohio State football and recruiting since 2013, having done so previously for Buckeye Sports Bulletin and Landof10.com. He is currently a student at Tulane Law School and resides in New Orleans, La.

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