Player to Watch: Ohio State's Superb Sophomore Wide Receiver Garrett Wilson

By John Morgan on October 29, 2020 at 9:30 am
wide receiver Garrett Wilson (5) runs the ball during the third quarter against the Nebraska Cornhuskers at Ohio Stadium.
Joseph Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports

When Ohio State comes to Beaver Stadium Saturday night, they won't be greeted by a hostile white-out crowd that they have become accustomed to. They will be facing a team desperate for a win as the Nittany Lions are staring at a possible 0-2 start to begin the 2020 campaign. Ohio State's offense is led by quarterback Justin Fields who is a threat by himself, but along with Fields, the Buckeyes have a great receiving corps. Sophomore Garrett Wilson has emerged as yet another threat for their powerful offense.

Last season, Wilson tallied 432 yards on 30 catches and five touchdowns as a freshman. In the Buckeyes first game against Nebraska, Wilson started and lined up as a slot receiver, which proved to be an effective role for him. The sophomore had a game-high 7 receptions for 129 yards and a touchdown. Wilson appeared in all 14 games as a freshman and finished the regular season in style against Michigan. Wilson had 118 yards on 3 catches and a 30-yard touchdown that was the proverbial "nail in their most hated rivals coffin" in their 56-27 win.

The Penn State secondary played pretty well on Saturday against Indiana, but the taste left in their mouth after the Hooisers final drive is a bitter one. Wilson in the slot could put him in a matchup against safety Lamont Wade who had a rough first half against Indiana, but played much better in the second half. The Nittany Lions will also need to account for Chirs Olave who is a star of his own. Olave finished with 6 catches and 104 yards against Nebraska in the opener. Eight different Buckeyes caught passes vs. the Huskers and Justin Fields finished the game completing 20 of his 21 passes. 

The entire defense faces a massive test starting up front with the line to the secondary. Ohio State is a machine and will be the biggest test any Big Ten opponent faces this season. Wilson adds that extra element for defensive coordinator Brent Pry to prepare for and if the sophomore gets loose, it could be a Halloween horror film for the Nittany Lions. It's going to take an extraordinary game plan for the defense, but Garrett Wilson is an emerging star and one that Penn State will need to watch.