Ohio State's 2015 seniors on the cusp of 50 victories
Ohio State one of eight football programs visited by ESPN this spring.
The offensive and defensive line positions have flip-flopped from 2012 in terms of experience
The team held its third of 15 practices this spring in the Woody Hayes Athletic Center
Earliest start, perhaps, in school history comes after a 103-day break in practices
USATSPI: Ohio State vs. Purdue - 11/02/13
Ohio State Overview: Joel Hale is a fifth-year senior and a leader with a commanding presence, even though he is 15 pounds lighter this season than last ... losing the weight was intentional as he returns to the defensive line this season after playing along the offensive line last year ... a three-year Varsity O letterman for the Buckeyes, Hale has earned his letters by playing in 29 games with nine starts along the defensive line during the 2011-12-13 seasons ... he switched to the offensive line last year but was slowed as he battled through a season-long injury ... Hale played 499 snaps from scrimmage and on special teams during the 2012 and 2013 seasons, and he'll look to make an impact in similar ways this season ... his presence back on the defensive line adds depth and big game experience to the position ... he graduated in December 2014 with his degree in family resource management ... he interned this summer with Cameron Mitchell's restaurant group and has hopes and goals to get into the restaurant ownership business.
2014 Season (Red-shirt): Hale switched to the offensive line after playing along the defensive line his first three seasons, but a nagging injury kept him from playing in just one game for the College Football Playoff national champions ... practiced as much as he could to help the team ... earned a red-shirt season because of the injury.
2013 Season (Junior): Hale played in all 14 games for the Buckeyes ... typically in the middle of the line engaging offensive linemen, this space eater started nine times and recorded 10 tackles, giving him 19 for his career ... he had a career-high for plays of 58 against both Buffalo and California.
2012 Season (Sophomore): Hale played in seven games for the undefeated Buckeyes in 2012 and was awarded his second varsity letter ... he totaled six tackles, including two vs. Purdue ... he played a then-career-high 31 plays from scrimmage vs. UAB and he played 25 vs. Indiana.
2011 Season (Freshman): Hale was among a handful of 2011 recruits to enroll early (January, 2011) at Ohio State ... he lettered as a true freshman, earning playing time in the defensive line rotation ... he played in nine games, including the Taxslayer.com Gator Bowl ... he was in on four tackles, including two in the game against one of his home-state schools, Purdue.
More on Joel: Hale was selected as Indiana's "defensive line" Mr. Football as a senior after recording 40 tackles and nine forced fumbles for coach Eric Moore's Center Grove H.S. team ... also named all-state, all-MICC conference and all-county ... lettered in track and field as well ... Joel is the son of Dawn Whitaker and Khris Hale.
Buckeyes in the NFL - Divisional Round