COLUMBUS — As the Ohio State football team began the search for its 2013 leaders, Urban Meyer told a crowd in Toledo this spring there was only one player he deemed a no-doubt captain.
It was left tackle Jack Mewhort.
“It’s not a dictatorship at Ohio State, and we let our players choose captains,” Meyer said of the St. John’s Jesuit graduate. “However, all those votes have to pass by my desk. So I’m going to tell you who one will be."
Tuesday night, Meyer confirmed the expected with an unexpected announcement.
Mewhort was indeed named a captain for the No. 2 Buckeyes — and he will have a bunch of company. OSU will go through the season with a school-record eight captains, then determine after the year who will be recognized as the team’s official leaders.
"It’s the first time I’ve done something like this,” Meyer told the team, according to a release. "We had eight individuals receive a lot of votes, and all were within 12 votes of each other. So they’ll lead us into each game as captains and at the end of the year a decision will be made as to who will be the season’s captains.”
Joining the 6-foot-6, 308-pound Mewhort as captains will be junior quarterback Braxton Miller and his senior backup, Kenny Guiton, senior safety C.J. Barnett, senior safety Christian Bryant, junior linebacker Ryan Shazier, senior center Corey Linsley, and senior receiver Corey Brown.
Mewhort, a fifth-year senior and third-year starter, played his sophomore season at guard before shifting to left tackle, where he earned All-Big Ten honors last season. He is widely viewed as the team’s foremost leader and the anchor of an offensive line that returns four starters.
The eight captains surpassed the school’s previous high of six in 2010 — a group that included receiver and Central Catholic graduate Dane Sanzenbacher.