Chris Olave chose to return to Ohio State for his senior year, surprising everyone.
The talented wide receiver could have been a first or second-round pick in the upcoming NFL draft. However, Olave is playing one more year at Ohio State to do one thing: be the best receiver in his draft class.
Olave quickly established legendary status at Ohio State with his performance in the Michigan game in 2018. He blocked a punt in the first quarter, which Sevyn Banks returned for a touchdown. Later in that game, he had two catches for 48 yards, each in the end zone.
That game took Olave from a little-known special teams player to a standout receiver. His next game was the Big Ten Championship, in which he had five receptions for 79 yards and one more touchdown.
Over the next two years, he was Justin Fields’ most trusted target, with 98 receptions, 1,569 receptions, and 19 touchdowns in his next 20 games.
Olave is coming back for his senior season to make Buckeye history.
Chris Olave Could Make Ohio State History in Senior Season
Olave could have opted out of last season and done pretty well in the draft. But he decided to play and put together one of the most efficient seasons by an Ohio State receiver ever.
Not only did he come back during a pandemic, but he decided to come back for a senior year. If this bet pays off like the last one, he will be the first receiver off the board in the 2022 draft.
If Olave did declare for the 2021 draft, he would be 16th all-time in receptions and receiving yards, and sixth in touchdowns at Ohio State. He would be fourth in touchdowns in a single season (with 12 in 2019), tied for first in receptions per game (7.1 in 2020), and fifth in 100-yard games (five in 2020).
Records That Olave Could Break
In 2020, Olave hauled in an average of just over seven receptions per game, which is tied with Cris Carter for first all-time at Ohio State. If he matches that total in 2021 and plays in 14 games, he will have 98 receptions. That would pass Parris Campbell for most in a single season and K.J. Hill for most in a career.
If he posts 98 receptions, then he is likely to attain other Ohio State records. If he averages 16 yards per reception, which is his career average, then he will have 1,568 receiving yards in 2021. That would pass David Boston’s school record of 1,435 that he set in 1998.
Olave can far surpass Michael Jenkins’s record of 2,898 career receiving yards if he puts up that total in 2021. Adding to his current total of 1,766, Olave would set a new record of 3,334 yards.
He already has 22 career receiving touchdowns. If he catches another 12, which is his career-high from 2019, then he would tie Boston with 34, which would be the highest in Buckeye history. Last year, he had seven touchdowns in seven games, so 12 is an easily attainable number. Of all the records Olave could break, that record is in the most danger.
Even if Olave slightly underperforms, there is still a good chance he can break some career records at Ohio State. At the very worst, he will be third in most categories.
In all likelihood, Olave will leave Ohio State as one of the best receivers ever to wear scarlet and gray.