September 8, 2011

Film Vault: Bogard is a tackling machine

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For De'van Bogard and his Cleveland Glenville teammates, Monday's game in the Herbstreit Football Series didn't exactly go as planned. The young Tarblooders team struggled with turnovers and mental mistakes in a 23-14 loss to a strong Camden County (Ga.) team. Though Bogard wanted to get the win, playing on the field that he will soon call home was a good experience.

"It was great playing in 'The Shoe'," said Bogard. "We came up short and I need to be a leader to my team and bounce back."

With the loss, Glenville drops to 0-2 on the season and is in serious danger of missing the playoffs. In fact, for the Tarblooders to have any chance at all at the post-season, they will likely need to win their final eight games.

"We've got to have faith and believe in each other and our coaching staff," he said. "We have a young quarterback and he did great and I commend him too but we just have to keep thriving and keep moving."

For the game, Bogard notched 12 tackles, marking the second straight year he has performed at a high level at Ohio Stadium. Bogard still has the rest of his senior season to play, but he was clearly excited about making Columbus his home in the near future.

"O-State is like a dream for us at Glenville," he said. "I always wanted to go to O-State when I was little and I finally got the chance to go to O-State so I'm here. They were down in the dirt there for a little while and me committing was basically putting them back up."

In order for Glenville to get things turned around, Bogard knows he will need to step up as a senior leader and follow the motto that he wears on his arm during games. That motto reads as follows´┐Ż.

"Stepping out onto that field on game day gives me that sense of urgency to win. Knowing that the true 11 (the eleven starters) are my brothers and they got my back at all times. Through the best and the worst times we will always be a family."


It's always difficult to try and evaluate a player that is not playing his natural position. Bogard starts at linebacker for Glenville but ultimately will be a safety at Ohio State. His size, length, and physical nature allow him to excel at that position at the high school level and make him proto-type for Ohio State's STAR position, a safety/linebacker hybrid.

On Monday, Bogard was extremely active, particularly against the run, showing the ability to navigate through traffic and find the ball-carrier. Bogard has the frame to fill out and add another 15-20 pounds of good weight and once he does that, he's going to be even stronger in run support.

Playing the linebacker position, I didn't really get a chance to see Bogard in pass coverage and that will be the major key for him between playing that true safety position or being a STAR guy at Ohio State. If Bogard is going to play up in the box at Ohio State, he's going to need to improve his ability to read plays. A few times on Monday he took a step or two in the wrong direction before finding the football. At the high school level, he's athletic enough to get away with that and still make the play, but that won't be the case at the college level as that one step can be the difference between a two-yard gain and a long touchdown run for the opponent.

Overall, Bogard turned in another outstanding performance and has further cemented himself as one of Ohio's best prospects.


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