The Ohio Bobcats have been hit with a slew of injuries this year. All four team captains have been injured at some point during this season.
Senior safety Gerald Moore and junior quarterback Tyler Tettleton, both team captains, have missed a game due to injury. Senior cornerback Travis Carrie, another one of Ohio's captains, is out for the season and fellow senior captain Jordan Thompson is likely done for the year after suffering a severe knee injury in the Buffalo game.
With two team captains out, leadership seems like it could become a problem for Ohio. However, Solich is not concerned about that because Ohio has a unity council of about 16 to 18 players that are leaders on the team.
“We put together a unity council this year … so those guys are supplying great leadership for us. The one thing we’ve always done since we’ve been here is encourage leadership in all classes. You don’t have to be a senior or an experienced guy to be a leader, you can be an underclassman and be a leader,” said Solich. “Jordan Thompson, for example, as a freshman, was a leader. We have several guys like that on the team now that are young guys … Those guys on the unity council are expected to do all the right things.”
The unity council is made up of two players from every position and the kicker. It allows for leaders to step up and be readily available when they are needed.
Some members of the unity council are wide receivers Mario Dovell, Bakari Bussey and Chase Cochran, tight end Jordan Thompson, defensive linemen Tremayne Scott and Corey Hasting, defensive backs Gerald Moore, Travis Carrie and Josh Kristoff and kicker Matt Weller.
Thompson’s knee injury is the latest of the many Ohio injuries.
“Jordan’s not easy to replace, he’s a tremendous blocker and he developed into a receiver,” said Ohio head coach Frank Solich.
Solich doesn’t believe that Thompson’s injury will affect Ohio’s ability to operate in two tight end sets, though.
“If we lost another tight end then that would drop us down a little bit, with three tight ends I think we can pretty much operate as we’ve been operating,” said Solich.
The injuries keep piling on for the Bobcats, the Bobcats' depth has saved them so far, but that can only last so long. Solich feels that Ohio may be due for an injury-free stretch.
“We can’t keep getting the type of injuries we’re getting and have to go the rest of the season that way and feel that any amount of depth is going to suffice,” said Solich. “Things have a tendency to even out, so we’re ready for a stretch of no injuries, so hopefully that occurs.”