May 20, 2024

Ohio State injury updates: Will Emeka Egbuka, Denzel Burke return vs. Rutgers?

Ohio State injury updates: Will Emeka Egbuka, Denzel Burke return vs.  Rutgers?

The Ohio State Buckeyes are set to have a big return, but a couple of large absences for their Week 10 game against Rutgers.

The first College Football Playoff rankings of the season were unveiled on Tuesday by the Selection Committee. Sitting in the No. 1 spot were the Ohio State Buckeyes, who earned it based on their strength of schedule over the rival Michigan Wolverines, Georgia Bulldogs, and Florida State Seminoles. Given the traffic jam in the Big Ten at the top alongside Michigan and Penn State, they can’t afford to lose a game in the final month of the season.

On Saturday, for Week 10, Ohio State is on the road to take on the 6-2 Rutgers Scarlet Knights, who qualified for a bowl game before the month of October even ended. While Ohio State has gone 9-0 all-time against Rutgers, it doesn’t hurt to have your best players on offense on the field. It appears the Buckeyes will have just that on Saturday.

According to ESPN’s Pete Thamel, wide receiver Emeka Egbuka is expected to play for Ohio State after missing the past three games due to an ankle injury. That’s if he doesn’t suffer a setback during warmups.

But there was some bad news, as Thamel reported that cornerback Denzel Burke and safety Lathan Ransom will not be available for the game.

Emeka Egbuka expected to return for Ohio State’s game vs. Rutgers

Egbuka had last played during the team’s Oct. 7 game against the Maryland Terrapins, and he was seen wearing a walking boot after the game. Egbuka missed their game against the Purdue Boilermakers the week after.

But in the past two weeks the wide receiver tried to get back on the gridiron. He warmed up ahead of the team’s Week 8 game against Penn State and was in uniform on the sidelines but never took a snap. Egbuka tried to play last week against Wisconsin, but head coach Ryan Day opted to sit him out for another week.

This season, Egbuka caught 22 passes for 303 yards and three touchdowns in five games played.

Burke missed the team’s game against Purdue due to an undisclosed injury but made his return last week against Wisconsin. Now, he is back on the injury report and set to miss his second game in three weeks.

The junior cornerback recorded nine total tackles (seven solo, two assisted), nine defended passes, one forced fumble, and one interception in seven games.

As for Ransom, he had played in every game for the Buckeyes this season. But last week against Wisconsin, he had to be carted to the locker room after suffering a non-contact injury.

Ransom recorded 34 total tackles (21 solo, 13 assisted), two defended passes, one forced fumble, and one interception.

While being without Egbuka, the Buckeyes have still been winning games. It certainly helps that they have Marvin Harrison Jr., who has been destroying defenses throughout his time at Columbus. But getting Egbuka back for the final stretch of the season is pivotal. Yet, it will be interesting how the secondary performs on Saturday without Burke and Ransom

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