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Thread: Great Article On Gholston

  1. #1

    Great Article On Gholston

    http://www.boston.com/sports/article...ges_in_a_rush/

    Gholston emerges in a rush
    Late starter has become prospect

    By Christopher L. Gasper, Globe Staff | April 23, 2008

    It's a tradition at Ohio State, like dotting the "i." Buckeyes who have graduated to the NFL like Mike Vrabel of the Patriots come back to Columbus during the offseason and work out with the current players. Vernon Gholston always looked forward to Vrabel's homecoming.

    "He comes back a lot of times in the summertime for conditioning for the season, so I get a chance to compete with him and some of the other veterans," said Gholston at the NFL Scouting Combine. "Sometimes I beat him and sometimes he beats me."

    This past season, Gholston surpassed Vrabel's sacks record, setting an Ohio State mark with 14, one better than the Patriots Pro Bowler recorded in 1995.

    On a star-studded defense that helped propel the Buckeyes to their second straight national championship game and included linebacker James Laurinaitis and cornerback Malcolm Jenkins - both potential first-round picks next year - Gholston was the game-changer.

    Now NFL teams believe that the 6-foot-3-inch, 266-pound defensive end/linebacker can do the same on Sundays.

    The premier pass rusher in the draft, Gholston, who didn't start playing football until his sophomore year of high school, wowed scouts with a 4.58-second 40-yard dash and 42-inch vertical leap at his pro day, putting himself in the debate over whom Bill Parcells and the Miami Dolphins would take with the No. 1 pick in the draft until they signed Michigan offensive tackle Jake Long yesterday.

    "Vernon has so much upside, our defense revolved around him," said Ohio State defensive coordinator/linebackers coach Luke Fickell. "Michigan State head coach Mark Dantonio said before we played them, 'You hear all this talk about other guys, but their defense is made by Vernon Gholston. That's the guy that makes that defense go.'

    "The things we asked him to do not were not always the most glorious, but they were important for our defense."

    Gholston played the "Leo" position for Ohio State, a hybrid rush/drop defensive end spot that required him to be flexible enough to play with his hand on the ground and standing up, to both rush the passer and shift into coverage.

    The position has some of the same demands that the Patriots ask of players, like Vrabel, who play outside linebacker in the 3-4 scheme.

    Fickell was at Ohio State when Vrabel set the record for sacks in a season with 13. He shared both a room and a defensive line with Vrabel, and the two remain friends. Fickell said Gholston, who declared for the draft as a junior, will have to make some of the same adjustments that Vrabel had to make if he's asked to be a 3-4 linebacker in the NFL.

    "I would say that Vernon has played a lot more standup in college than Vrabes ever did," Fickell said. "The things that make them both great ones is that they work hard and have all the physical tools. Mike has the football knowledge and the intangible things that are really essential in becoming a great player. That's where Vernon's upside is going to be because he is still a raw football player.

    "Coming here, he didn't play a lot of high school football. When he first came here, he was just learning football, and really it was 2 1/2 years before you were like, 'Wow it's starting to click.' That was going into his sophomore year because he's a redshirt guy. He has so much more growing to do, and that's his upside."

    The one knock on Gholston is that his physical prowess doesn't always translate into consistent effort. But one NFL general manger said he didn't agree with that evaluation.

    "Certain positions lend to lulls in production," said the GM. "It's not something that I downgraded him on. I think he could be more consistent, just like a lot of players can."

    Gholston said he'd like to have a career like Vrabel's, but hesitated when asked which position he'd rather play, 3-4 outside linebacker or 4-3 defensive end.

    "It's really wherever the team puts me," he said. "The biggest thing is I'm capable of playing both positions."

    One thing he probably will never be able to match is Vrabel's sardonic wit and outgoing personality.

    "He might be his polar opposite as far as personalities," said Fickell. "I don't know him in and out, but he's a guy that enjoys football and lifting weights. He's not a go-out guy. He's more of an introverted guy and really laid back."

    Until he's putting quarterbacks flat on their backs.

  2. #2
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    http://www.boston.com/sports/article...ges_in_a_rush/

    Gholston emerges in a rush
    Late starter has become prospect

    By Christopher L. Gasper, Globe Staff | April 23, 2008

    It's a tradition at Ohio State, like dotting the "i." Buckeyes who have graduated to the NFL like Mike Vrabel of the Patriots come back to Columbus during the offseason and work out with the current players. Vernon Gholston always looked forward to Vrabel's homecoming.

    "He comes back a lot of times in the summertime for conditioning for the season, so I get a chance to compete with him and some of the other veterans," said Gholston at the NFL Scouting Combine. "Sometimes I beat him and sometimes he beats me."

    This past season, Gholston surpassed Vrabel's sacks record, setting an Ohio State mark with 14, one better than the Patriots Pro Bowler recorded in 1995.

    On a star-studded defense that helped propel the Buckeyes to their second straight national championship game and included linebacker James Laurinaitis and cornerback Malcolm Jenkins - both potential first-round picks next year - Gholston was the game-changer.

    Now NFL teams believe that the 6-foot-3-inch, 266-pound defensive end/linebacker can do the same on Sundays.

    The premier pass rusher in the draft, Gholston, who didn't start playing football until his sophomore year of high school, wowed scouts with a 4.58-second 40-yard dash and 42-inch vertical leap at his pro day, putting himself in the debate over whom Bill Parcells and the Miami Dolphins would take with the No. 1 pick in the draft until they signed Michigan offensive tackle Jake Long yesterday.

    "Vernon has so much upside, our defense revolved around him," said Ohio State defensive coordinator/linebackers coach Luke Fickell. "Michigan State head coach Mark Dantonio said before we played them, 'You hear all this talk about other guys, but their defense is made by Vernon Gholston. That's the guy that makes that defense go.'

    "The things we asked him to do not were not always the most glorious, but they were important for our defense."

    Gholston played the "Leo" position for Ohio State, a hybrid rush/drop defensive end spot that required him to be flexible enough to play with his hand on the ground and standing up, to both rush the passer and shift into coverage.

    The position has some of the same demands that the Patriots ask of players, like Vrabel, who play outside linebacker in the 3-4 scheme.

    Fickell was at Ohio State when Vrabel set the record for sacks in a season with 13. He shared both a room and a defensive line with Vrabel, and the two remain friends. Fickell said Gholston, who declared for the draft as a junior, will have to make some of the same adjustments that Vrabel had to make if he's asked to be a 3-4 linebacker in the NFL.

    "I would say that Vernon has played a lot more standup in college than Vrabes ever did," Fickell said. "The things that make them both great ones is that they work hard and have all the physical tools. Mike has the football knowledge and the intangible things that are really essential in becoming a great player. That's where Vernon's upside is going to be because he is still a raw football player.

    "Coming here, he didn't play a lot of high school football. When he first came here, he was just learning football, and really it was 2 1/2 years before you were like, 'Wow it's starting to click.' That was going into his sophomore year because he's a redshirt guy. He has so much more growing to do, and that's his upside."
    He may need a year or two here unfortunately as well. Sounds like while he's a potential monster he still needs some polishing and adjustment.

    The one knock on Gholston is that his physical prowess doesn't always translate into consistent effort. But one NFL general manger said he didn't agree with that evaluation.

    "Certain positions lend to lulls in production," said the GM. "It's not something that I downgraded him on. I think he could be more consistent, just like a lot of players can."
    Fair point. And, it's always good to hear this from a REAL football GM. Not our mouseclicking GM's around here.

    Gholston said he'd like to have a career like Vrabel's, but hesitated when asked which position he'd rather play, 3-4 outside linebacker or 4-3 defensive end.

    "It's really wherever the team puts me," he said. "The biggest thing is I'm capable of playing both positions."

    One thing he probably will never be able to match is Vrabel's sardonic wit and outgoing personality.

    "He might be his polar opposite as far as personalities," said Fickell. "I don't know him in and out, but he's a guy that enjoys football and lifting weights. He's not a go-out guy. He's more of an introverted guy and really laid back."

    Until he's putting quarterbacks flat on their backs.



  3. #3
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    Great read, thank you for posting it.

  4. #4
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    Good read

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by mario8723 View Post
    "Vernon has so much upside, our defense revolved around him," said Ohio State defensive coordinator/linebackers coach Luke Fickell. "Michigan State head coach Mark Dantonio said before we played them, 'You hear all this talk about other guys, but their defense is made by Vernon Gholston. That's the guy that makes that defense go.'
    You know that Fickell is going to say this... but coaches from other colleges making comments like this are always a good thing.

    Quote Originally Posted by mario8723 View Post
    "The things we asked him to do not were not always the most glorious, but they were important for our defense."

    Gholston played the "Leo" position for Ohio State, a hybrid rush/drop defensive end spot that required him to be flexible enough to play with his hand on the ground and standing up, to both rush the passer and shift into coverage.

    "I would say that Vernon has played a lot more standup in college than Vrabes ever did," Fickell said. "The things that make them both great ones is that they work hard and have all the physical tools. Mike has the football knowledge and the intangible things that are really essential in becoming a great player. That's where Vernon's upside is going to be because he is still a raw football player.
    Exactly how we are going to use him. Plus if he turns into a Vrable clone he was worth the 6 pick and then some.

    Quote Originally Posted by mario8723 View Post
    "Coming here, he didn't play a lot of high school football. When he first came here, he was just learning football, and really it was 2 1/2 years before you were like, 'Wow it's starting to click.' That was going into his sophomore year because he's a redshirt guy. He has so much more growing to do, and that's his upside."
    This kid has only been playing football since his second year of HS. Pretty impressive to go from that to being a dominate force at a big time program.

    Quote Originally Posted by mario8723 View Post
    "Certain positions lend to lulls in production," said the GM. "It's not something that I downgraded him on. I think he could be more consistent, just like a lot of players can."
    Klecko has been saying this to me for a LONG time.

    Quote Originally Posted by mario8723 View Post
    "It's really wherever the team puts me," he said. "The biggest thing is I'm capable of playing both positions."
    Which is what you need to be able to do to play in our schemes.

    Quote Originally Posted by mario8723 View Post
    One thing he probably will never be able to match is Vrabel's sardonic wit and outgoing personality.

    "He might be his polar opposite as far as personalities," said Fickell. "I don't know him in and out, but he's a guy that enjoys football and lifting weights. He's not a go-out guy. He's more of an introverted guy and really laid back."

    Until he's putting quarterbacks flat on their backs.
    Loves playing the game, loves working out... not much into going out. Perfect for an insta-millionaire living in the Big Apple.

    I was not high on Gholston but I have changed (and the change was happening BEFORE we drafted him). He seems to be a good kid with a crapload of potential who can instantly help this team in passing situations. There was no other pick to make at 6. I love McKelvin... but not at 6. I would have loved Long or DMC but they weren't there. We went BAP who can impact the team from day 1 and eventually grow into a dominating force in this league.

  6. #6
    He's gonna turn our defense into the chargers east with a little new england mixed in. we just need to see if jmiller is the other corner and can handle the job or if we need to find a solution some other way.

    I'm excited out our defenses potential.

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