Wells, Wells, and Saine bay-bee. Gonna be a lethal trio for the Bucks this year.
Furls has been tellin me about this kid for two years ...
http://www.cleveland.com/osufootball/pl ... xml&coll=2
Saine's speed has heads turning, shaking
Friday, August 10, 2007
Plain Dealer Reporter
Columbus- Ohio State speed coordinator Butch Reynolds would know better than anyone, and he wasn't waffling Thursday.
Though the Buckeyes lost speedsters Ted Ginn Jr. and Anthony Gonzalez to the NFL, Reynolds said, "I think we're actually faster than we were last year."
Part of that is because in Reynolds' third year, the Olympic medalist and former world record holder in the 400 meters has firmly established his methods as part of the OSU workout program.
And part of that is because of players such as Brandon Saine, the freshman running back who will be the test case for what happens when an elite sprinter gets a full career of football tutelage from another elite sprinter.
When Ginn, previous holder of the title of fastest Buckeye, arrived in Columbus in 2004, Reynolds wasn't on board yet. But this time the state-record holder in the 100 meters, like the rest of the Buckeyes, had a full summer with Reynolds before preseason camp even started.
When the players ran for coaches for the first time Monday morning, it showed.
"Brandon Saine, it was kind of a jog in the park," coach Jim Tressel said. "He runs with the Lions, which is what we call the middle group, and he's faster than all the Cheetahs [the receivers and defensive backs]. He was just so smooth."
Told of Tressel's praise, Saine laughed and said, "It was little harder than he made it seem."
The process of taking advantage of that smooth speed is under way. The theory is that with a new quarterback starting this season, the Buckeyes will rely more on the running game. There could be some razzle dazzle in those runs.
No. 1 tailback Chris Wells, at 240 pounds, runs a 4.5-second 40 according to Reynolds, fast stuff for a big guy. Reynolds said the 205-pound Saine, without major tinkering, runs a 4.4 40 and can break into the 4.3 range.
"He could run 4.4 all day," Reynolds said. "That's elite. That's elite. Nobody's done 4.2 yet, but we're coming."
"It's not a track meet," said running backs coach Dick Tressel. "But the way you see [Saine's] sprinter speed on the field is he's going faster than the other guys."
At this point, Saine and fellow freshman Daniel Herron are behind Chris Wells and junior Mo Wells on the running back depth chart. But it's easy to see the Buckeyes finding ways immediately to utilize Saine, who also happened to win Ohio's Mr. Football 2006 after rushing for 1,895 yards and 27 touchdowns at Piqua High last year.
"I can catch the ball pretty well, but I don't really know where I fit in at this point," Saine said. "I'm just trying to work my way in on special teams."
His understated reputation preceded him, but Saine's attitude has made a mark with the coaches already.
"Brandon's very mature," Dick Tressel said. "He's calm, he's patient."
And he's fast. Very fast. And if Reynolds has his way, he'll soon be even faster.