Ohio State football sets start date for spring practice schedule

Joey Kaufman
Buckeye Xtra
Coach Ryan Day and the Buckeyes will hold their spring game on April 17.

Ohio State is to open spring football practice on March 19, according to a school spokesman.

The Buckeyes are scheduled to hold 15 workouts over the following four weeks, including a spring game on April 17.

While professional, college and high school sports teams in Ohio are permitted to hold up to 30% capacity at outdoor venues under a revised public health order signed by Gov. Mike DeWine this week, no decision has been reached on the potential for fan attendance during the spring finale.

The Big Ten has not permitted fan attendance at conference games in all sports since last fall.

Reduced capacity was permitted at both of the Buckeyes' games in the College Football Playoff, including 14,926 for the final against Alabama that was held in suburban Miami.

If lower-capacity crowds are allowed inside Ohio Stadium for a spring football game, athletic director Gene Smith said officials have discussed inviting healthcare and other frontline workers rather than sell general admission seats.

“That would be my hope,” Smith said, “that we could come up with a strategy to recognize them and invite them to the spring game.”

The onset of the coronavirus pandemic prompted Ohio State to cancel its spring game last April, but it drew 61,102 spectators in 2019.

A majority of the Buckeyes’ spring practices were also called off last spring. They held three practices during the first week of March before the remainder were canceled while players were on spring break.