With the spring game only three days away, Ohio State’s quarterback battle looks to be no closer to a resolution.

Buckeyes coach Urban Meyer spoke publicly Wednesday afternoon for the first time in nine days, and he said the competition among Dwayne Haskins Jr., Joe Burrow and Tate Martell remains too close to call.

“All three are close,” Meyer said on the Big Ten coaches teleconference. “There are times you wish you’d have one guy separate.

“It’s certainly not because of poor performance but because all three want the job. Some decisions are going to have to be made, but right now I can’t name one (as a front-runner). ... Today was probably their best practice, the three of them combined. Yeah, these are three good ones.”

Haskins led the Buckeyes to a comeback victory at Michigan last year. As a result, the redshirt sophomore was perceived to have at least a slight edge entering the spring.

Burrow was neck and neck with Haskins to be J.T. Barrett’s backup in 2017 before he broke a bone in his throwing hand during training camp. He was Barrett’s backup in 2016.

Martell drew raves as a scout-team quarterback as a true freshman last year after having an undefeated high school career in Las Vegas.

Asked about the possibility of not having a clear favorite coming out of the spring game, Meyer said, “I don’t want to get too far ahead of ourselves, and some things I won’t share with everyone else what’s going on in-house. I’ve been in worse situations, when you haven’t had one (capable quarterback). So we just have to do right by the team and do right by the players.”

One complicating factor in the decision is the fact that Burrow would be eligible to transfer and play immediately at a new school if he earns his degree in June, as expected.

Meyer was asked if he had confidence in all three quarterbacks to start if needed.

“Not yet,” he said. “In due time, yes. Obviously, we don’t play for a few months and they have to go through summer training and training camp and all that. But with proper development, yes.”

Meanwhile, Meyer provided updates on a few other position battles. He said sophomore Thayer Munford has earned the starting right tackle job. He said center Brady Taylor has had a “very good” spring and that Malcolm Pridgeon has started to earn playing time.

“The offensive line, we still don’t know how that’s going to shake out,” Meyer said.

At tight end, Meyer said, Luke Farrell “has kind of advanced in front of the other guys, but we’re still trying to finalize that.”

Meyer added that the safety spot opposite Jordan Fuller remains up for grabs, with Isaiah Pryor, Jahsen Wint and Brendon White battling.



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