Cody Cousino / Multimedia editor
While Ohio State tight end Jake Stoneburner’s future with Buckeyes football team might seem uncertain to some, the Nassau County Sports Commission still expects the tight end to stand out this coming season.
Stoneburner, who was removed from scholarship with the Buckeyes after being arrested for urinating in public and fleeing police, was named to the watch list for the John Mackey Award, which honors the nation’s most outstanding tight end.
Having been named to the watch list by the Nassau County Sports Commission, the still-suspended Stoneburner joins a growing number of Buckeyes to garner pre-season awards.
Named by first-year coach Urban Meyer as one of the team’s top offensive playmakers immediately following OSU’s April 21 Spring Game, Stoneburner will enter the 2012 season with 37 career catches, 445 receiving yard and nine touchdowns.
Stoneburner is one touchdown reception away from tying the school record for scores by a player at his position, however, he and redshirt senior offensive lineman Jack Mewhort are indefinitely suspended from the team.
Shawnee Hills Police arrested Stoneburner and Mewhort for “obstructing official business” at about 2:30 a.m. June 2 by the Bogey Inn near Dublin, Ohio.
In a police report obtained by The Lantern from the Shawnee Hills Police Department, police said they spotted Stoneburner, Mewhort and a third person, Austin Barnard, urinating on what appeared to be an early childhood education school called The Oxford School near Dublin, Ohio. After shining a bright light, police said the three suspects ran away.
Although Barnard is unaffiliated with the OSU football program, he is a business student at OSU.
The report documented that Stoneburner and Barnard were found hiding behind a parked vehicle in a parking lot being used for that weekend’s Memorial Tournament. Police said Stoneburner admitted to officers that he was urinating before he ran.
Despite his troubles, Stoneburner now finds himself in good company as defensive linemen John Simon, Johnathan Hankins and sophomore quarterback Braxton Miller have also garnered pre-season recognition.
Simon, a senior, has been named to the Lott IMPACT Award watch list for the honor which equally recognizes athletic performance and the personal character attributes of players.
Simon joins Hankins, a junior, on the Bednarik Award watch list as potential recipients of the award for the nation’s top defensive player. Miller has been named to the watch list for the Maxwell Award, which honors the nation’s most outstanding college football player.
OSU will begin its 2012 campaign Sept. 1 at noon against Miami (Ohio) at Ohio Stadium.