Kamryn Babb named Ohio State's Block O honoree

Bill Rabinowitz
The Columbus Dispatch

Ohio State has named wide receiver Kamryn Babb its Block O recipient for the 2022 season, an award established two years ago to honor the legacy of legendary Buckeye Bill Willis.

Babb has persevered through four ACL tears, one before his senior year of high school in St. Louis and three more at Ohio State. His only action in a Buckeye game has been on special teams for seven games in 2020.

“The last five years have been a long journey,” Babb said. “There were times when I was down and had a lot of questions. But God put people in my life who wouldn’t let me give up and it’s been a blessing. I couldn’t have done this without them.”

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He had another scare in spring practice when he tore meniscus, but that required only arthroscopic surgery. He also has missed time in training camp, but coach Ryan Day said Thursday that was only a "tweak."

“I’ve learned that you can’t get through tough times all by yourself,” said Babb. “You have to grab on to someone. I hope everyone sees that. I love this team and I can’t wait to go on this journey that’s ahead of us.

“It’s an honor to have this number attached to my name. With it comes the responsibility to lead this team any way that I can.”

Kamryn Babb checks in with coach Tony Alford of the Ohio State University football team as Babb checks into the Hyatt Grandview on Sunday, August 8, 2022.

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Bill WIllis was an iconic Ohio State football player

Bill Willis was an All-American two-way lineman who starred on the Buckeyes' first national championship team in 1942. The Columbus native later helped integrate pro football in 1946 when he played for the Cleveland Browns under Paul Brown. He was elected to the College Football Hall of Fame in 1971 and to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1977.

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Ohio State created the Block O honor in 2020. Defensive end Jonathon Cooper, a Gahanna native, was the first recipient. Thayer Munford earned the honor last year, though NCAA rules prevented him from wearing the No. 0 jersey because he was an offensive lineman.

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