Ohio State football’s Jack Sawyer and J.T. Tuimoloau needed early due to Tyler Friday’s season-ending torn ACL


COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ohio State football will not have Tyler Friday’s veteran presence on the field in 2021.

Buckeyes coach Ryan Day confirmed on his Tuesday radio show that the senior defensive end suffered a torn anterior cruciate knee ligament in the offseason. Day had previously said Friday was not expected to play much if at all this season.

“It was a tough break for him in the preseason — kind of a freak thing, just out doing some drills on his own,” Day said. “We’re obviously happy that he’s gonna be back for another year, but it’s gonna be a long year for recovery.”

Friday recorded seven tackles in five games last season. He has started a few games in the past. Along with Javontae Jean-Baptiste, he would have factored into the second tier of a rotation headlined by Zach Harrison and Tyreke Smith this season.

However, the emergence of Jack Sawyer as a true freshman and the arrival of J.T. Tuimoloau as the same creates an intriguing five-man rotation.

Friday now is expected to return in 2022, where his veteran presence could be important if both Smith, a senior, and Harrison, a draft-eligible junior, have the opportunity to move on.

Day said Friday has served as the “big brother” to Tuimoloau and has remained positive despite the injury setback.

“An ACL used to be something where your career was done,” Day said. “Now as we know, it’s part of the game almost. He’s gonna recover well, and our people will take great care of him, and we look forward to having him back next year.”

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Ohio State football’s Jack Sawyer and J.T. Tuimoloau needed early due to Tyler Friday’s season-ending torn ACL

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