Established Star and New Star Make Big Plays in Kick Scrimmage
By John Porentas
The spring kick scrimmage was held yesterday and one player who you knew would excel did, and one you hardly know about did as well.
Ted Ginn was up to his old tricks, returning a punt 80 yards for a touchdown in the kick scrimmage. Ginn's return was the only one of the day for him because that's the way Head Coach Jim Tressel wanted it.
"One of the rules in today's kick scrimmage was that Teddy could have only one return," said Tressel.
Ginn made the most of it.
"They kicked him into his left corner and he split two snipers then broke it off to the right side," said OSU wide receivers and return game coach Darrell Hazell.
Once Ginn cleared the gunners the only person left between him and goal line was punter A. J. Trapasso. Trapasso said he made an effort, but...
"...I didn't have a chance," said Trepasso who himself is former high school running back and is not exactly slow.
"Teddy makes everyone on the field look slow. For a split second I thought I had an angle...no, I don't have the angle," said an embarrassed Trapasso.
"It happens real quick. You don't really realize how fast he's moving because of how big his strides are but when he's on top of you. It's like, all right, ...never mind."
Everybody knows about Ted Ginn, but the surprise performer of the day was place kicker Aaron Pettry who kicked a 59 yard field goal on the last play of the scrimmage to give his team a 27-25 win.
"It was a bomb shot," said an obviously impressed Tressel.
According to Tressel, pandemonium broke out after the game-winner went through.
"I got tackled by the whole team," said Pettry of the celebration following his big boot. "There was the holder and snapper in there but it was a lot of fun."
Pettry is an unknown to OSU fans, but not to the OSU coaching staff. He graduated from high school three years ago, and the OSU recruiting team asked him then to hold off entering college until the kickers then on the OSU squad (Mike Nugent and Josh Huston) had finished their OSU careers. Pettry agreed to do just that and attended community college for two years. He enrolled at Ohio State fall quarter and was put on a football scholarship to begin winter quarter this year.
"I kept waiting for a scholarship to open up. They wanted me to keep stick with them and waiting it out. I told them I would. There were a few times I didn't know wanted to look at other places, but they promised me I would have a scholarship if I would wait," said Pettry of the time he spent in Community colleges.
Pettry made all but three of his field goal attempts in the kick scrimmage. One was blocked, one hit the crossbar from about 45 yards out and one was wide right from 50 yards out. He also was able to show excellent leg strength on kickoffs despite using the new, lower kicking tee which has been mandated by the NCAA and will make it more difficult for kickers to get the ball deep next year.
"Aaron hit one that was 10 yards past the end of the endzone," said Tressel.
Pettry's main competition for the kicking job next fall, Ryan Pretorius, also had a very solid day.
"I missed one, but other than that it was a very good day," said Pretorius.
"The one I missed was from 50, I pulled that one left. The longest was in the 40-some range. The longest I've hit with the team is about 55 during a scrimmage during camp," he said.