Skull Session: Marvin Harrison Jr. Deserved the Biletnikoff, A Look at Ohio State’s Heisman Candidates Since 2018 and Columbus is a College Town


Buckeye Nation rejoiced Thursday as Tanner Holden sank a buzzing 3-pointer to take down Rutgers and give Ohio State a victory in their Big Ten opener.

The piece went exactly as Chris Holtmann had envisioned it.

Sweet, sweet victory.

Let’s have a good Friday, shall we?

WAIT WHAT? On Thursday night, while watching the ESPN College Football Awards show, I clenched my fist, looked up at the sky — rather, the ceiling of my apartment — and shouted in a loud voice, “Why?”

This, of course, was in response to the announcement of Tennessee’s Jalin Hyatt as the winner of this year’s Biletnikoff Award. Indeed, according to the voters of the honor given to college football’s top pass catcher, Hyatt had a better and more impressive season than Marvin Harrison Jr.

I understand Hyatt had more yards, touchdowns, and yards per catch than Harrison this season, but it’s not like he statistically blew Harrison out of the water. See their contributions to Tennessee and Ohio State side by side this year, including advanced stats from Pro Football Focus:











































Remark: ADOT = Average depth of the target

Yes, the stats are in Hyatt’s favor (but again, not by much). But what about the eye test? Maybe I have my rose colored glasses on (or scarlet glasses?) when I see Harrison perform weekly. Still, I’m pretty sure no other receiver in college football, including Hyatt, has made some of the spectacular catches Harrison landed during the regular season.

I mean, seriously. He’s nicknamed Super Marv for a reason. No one but Harrison did this sort of thing in 2022:

In my opinion, the Biletnikoff voters missed this one. And I know Harrison has one more year to win the award, but it feels like he should be looking for back-to-back Biletnikoffs instead of playing for his first.

I’ve said it for the past few weeks, and I’ll say it again today, Marvin Harrison Jr. is the best receiver in America. Period of time. Point empty. May he prove it once again on December 31 when Ohio State plays Georgia in the Peach Bowl, and may he have another chance to prove it nine days after that in the National Championship.

Isn’t it enchanting? Cheers to the media team for such a creation. I have no idea how long something like this would take, but I imagine it was quite time consuming.

The photo reminds me of how talented Ohio State’s rosters have been over the past five seasons and how Haskins, Fields, Stroud and Young have been the most talented on their respective teams during those years. That shows how special they all were (and are, in Stroud’s case) as they wore scarlet and gray.

Oh, and that reminds me of something. If you the Eleven fighters website on Thursday, we asked which of these players had the best season when they were individually nominated as Heisman Trophy finalists. Here’s how that poll turned out:

  1. Justin Fields, 2019: 44% (of the vote)

  2. Dwayne Haskins, 2018: 26%

  3. Chase Young, 2019: 25%

  4. CJ Stroud, 2021: 5%

  5. CJ Stroud, 2022: 1%

Stroud is, of course, the only player left to win the award and hopes to do so this weekend. The Heisman Trophy ceremony will take place Saturday at 8 p.m. in New York City and will be broadcast on ESPN.

Stroud was the favorite to win the honor for most of the season before Ohio State’s loss to Michigan. He was acquired by USC’s Caleb Williams, who most sportsbooks say is still the league leader heading into Saturday, despite losing to the Utah Trojans in the Pac-12 Championship Game.

But who knows? Maybe the Heisman voters will surprise us Saturday night.

COLUMBUS IS A COLLEGE TOWN. Despite Columbus being host to two major league sports franchises and a minor league baseball team, the state capital of Ohio is and will continue to be a college town. You know it. I know. This town belongs to the Buckeyes.

The Columbus Blue Jackets made that clear Wednesday when they announced they would move the start time of their December 31 game against the Chicago Blackhawks at the Nationwide Arena from 7 p.m. to 1 p.m. so as not to overlap with the 8 p.m. kickoff for the Peach. Bowl between Ohio State and Georgia.

From a Blue Jackets press release:

“New Year’s Eve will be a special day for Ohio sports fans and by moving our game to the afternoon, our fans won’t be able to miss a minute of Blue Jackets hockey or the excitement of watching the College Football Playoffs that night,” said Kathryn Dobbs, Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer of Blue Jackets.

Yes that’s right. The Columbus Blue Jackets, a hockey team in the NHL – a professional league representing one of the four major sports in the United States – bowed to the likes of the Ohio State Buckeyes.

Let’s be clear: The Blue Jackets are a hot item this season, mainly due to injuries on every line and a non-existent defense, but they are still a professional sports team. It really should be the CBJ who has the power to do what they want, not the amateurs wearing scarlet and gray.

But it’s always been that way in Columbus. The state of Ohio runs this city. And with the Buckeyes playing in the College Football Playoff, the Blue Jackets had no choice but to play second fiddle.

However, if you’re a fan of the jackets, this might be good news. Now you have afternoon plans on New Year’s Eve, and you’ll be able to see them destroyed at 1pm instead of 8pm and not miss any of the Buckeyes’ matchup with the Bulldogs. I see this as a huge win!

OLYMPIC VILLAGE. Folks, Ohio State has some talented women’s teams. Like really talented women’s teams. But we only have room to talk about two of them to wrap up this Skully.

Let’s start with women’s basketball, who defeated the Fighting Ryan Days of New Hampshire 92-36 on Thursday. If you looked at that score and thought, “Wow! That looks like a blowout!” then you’d be hit, but the final score doesn’t tell the whole story.

Soooooooooooo, Yes. Ohio State led only 39-29 at halftime, but outscored the (and this is their real nickname) Wildcats 53-7 in the second half, including a 30-4 run in the third and a 23-3 run in the fourth. win by 56 points. Cotie McMahon led the team with 20 points, followed by Taylor Mikesell with 19 and Taylor Thirry with 14. Defensively, the Buckeyes forced 27 turnovers and blocked four shots.

That makes it a good day for the women’s basketball team, I’d say.

Let’s move on to the women’s volleyball team. Man oh man, Emily Londot was an unstoppable force, collecting a career-high 29 kills on Thursday.

Londot’s performance, along with those of Mac Podraza, Rylee Rader, Kylie Murr and Jenaisya Moore, pushed Ohio State past Minnesota and into the Elite Eight for the first time since 2004.

Those players made it incredibly difficult to finish the match report yesterday afternoon as they accumulated more and more statistics at the end of the last set. But it’s a good thing they did, because Ohio State needed every point to beat the ogre that was the Sweet 16 for the program.

Cheers to coach Jen Flynn Oldenburg for what she’s done in her three seasons with the programs. Let’s end this year with a nice Volleybucks.

SONG OF THE DAY. “I’m Feeling Good” by James Brown.

CUT TO THE CHASE. Columbus sober bar Dry Mill is about to close…LeBron James congratulates Glenville football team on state championship…Officials honor California girl’s request to keep unicorn…Meet college football’s first $1 million strength coach…The year of de Slap: Pop culture moments in 2022.

The Valley Voice
The Valley Voice
Christopher Brito is a social media producer and trending writer for The Valley Voice, with a focus on sports and stories related to race and culture.


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