College football may have ended for most on Monday night when West Virginia native Nick Saban's Alabama squad blanked LSU 21-0 to win the BCS national championship.
But it really never ends.
The Big Ten Network's blogger Brent Yarina on Tuesday, in previewing the 2012 Big Ten football race, said his ''best guess for '12'' right now was Michigan finishing on top of the Legends Division, followed by Michigan State, Nebraska, Iowa, Northwestern and Minnesota, with Wisconsin winning the Leaders Division ahead of (in order) Ohio State, Purdue, Penn State, Illinois and Indiana.
I thought that was pretty good for the Buckeyes, who were only 3-5 in the conference last season, but with all five losses by a touchdown or less.
Four of the six early enrollees, Ohio high school seniors just a month ago, are Pickerington Central offensive lineman Jacoby Boren (younger brother of current Buckeye fullback Zach and former Ohio State lineman Justin), Canton Glen Oak running back Bri'onte Dunn, Olentangy linebacker Joshua Perry and Bedford defensive back Tyvis Powell.
They join two players who attended Fork Union (Va.) Military Academy this past season -Cardale Jones, a quarterback from Cleveland Glenville High School, and Michael Thomas, a receiver who graduated from Taft High School in Los Angeles.
"I wanted to get started with classes and get ahead with the conditioning drills," said Dunn. "Mostly I just wanted to get here though. I want to play."
"I wanted to learn the system, but also wanted to get a head start on the class work," said Perry. "The class load will be a little less (of a burden) down the road by getting started in classes now."
The six newest Buckeyes mark the largest contingent of mid-year enrollees for the Ohio State program in three years. Last year's group featured quarterback Braxton Miller and linebacker Ryan Shazier, while two years ago, Zach Boren, linebacker Storm Klein and offensive lineman Jack Mewhort entered OSU in January.
Center Mike Brewster, offensive tackle Mike Adams, running back Boom Herron and wide receiver DeVier Posey are headed to the most high-profile postseason college football all-star game, which allows players a week of practice in front of NFL talent evaluators.
In rankings of NFL prospects from NFLDraftScout.com, Adams was No. 51, Brewster No. 104, Posey No. 107 and Herron No. 125.
The Buckeyes will be coached on the North team by Minnesota Vikings head coach Leslie Frazier and his staff, while Washington Redskins head coach Mike Shanahan and his staff will direct the South squad.
Ticket locations are Memorial Fieldhouse and Speedway stations in Parkersburg (1400 7th St., 2893 Pike St., 3211 Murdoch Ave. and 3401 Emerson Ave.) and Marietta (100 North 7th St.).
Contact Steve Hemmelgarn at email@example.com