Standing tall at five stories high, if the tales hold true, behold Large Will Howard, the antidote to the Blue. Juggling ten footballs, each for a digit, he rallies the faithful, once starting to fidget.

To be a transfer portal quarterback sounds like a cushy deal, at least for a fortnight. Cam Ward enjoyed the spotlight of college football’s acclaim before jesting and heading to the NFL. Many others cashed in, exploring options in the realm of desperate B-tier programs. Even Kyle McCord secured a comfy spot to notch wins against Holy Cross, UConn, and Stanford.

Isn’t that the aspiration? The transfer portal champions players’ autonomy, akin to any other student or coach. Sure, money plays a role, but that’s always been the case. The real change is that players now have access to it.

With his mighty shoulders back, Big Will boomed, “Fret not, for I comprehend this immense task! I’ll compete daily, from film room to field. You’ll gain heart, grit, and toughness; I’ll be your sword and shield!”

Yet, in this era of free-agent college football, the pressure mounts for instant success. It’s grand when you’re a program’s potential savior, but turns sour when you’re the anticipated hero. Nowhere is this truer than at the quarterback’s post.

Enter Will Howard, cheered on by NIL offers and coordinator admirers. But the Buckeye faithful have a precise checklist demanding immediate fulfillment. A time machine to rectify past mistakes would be perfect. Absent that, the next best hope is for Howard to arrive, immediately look like the nation’s best quarterback in spring practices, score 50 touchdowns in the Spring Game, spend summer replicating every 2023 Kyle McCord snap but better, and then win every 2024 game by 35 points, culminating in obliterating Michigan.

“That’s not what we asked,” the fans grimly thought, “and it’s unsettling how affable this guy is.” They unleashed a storm of furious hot takes, typing away on X (formerly Twitter).

That’s a tall order! Someone might read the above and think, “That’s exactly what should happen, or else!” For what it’s worth, Howard seems a natural fit for Ohio State. Respected at Kansas State, he brings critical leadership to a position lacking experience in 2024 without him. He’s sizable and agile, drawing comparisons to Josh Allen for potential and upside, though statistically and mechanically not quite there yet.

He might upgrade Kyle McCord, and given his offensive arsenal, his most productive target in 2024 might not be a tight end (take that as you will). But he needs consistency and the ability to command a game with his arm.

“Wait, hold on!” Will cried, visibly shaken. “Ann Arbor is on notice! Death to Ann Arbor!” His gaze locked onto Day, temporarily appeasing the mob with nods of approval. “Just don’t forget to deliver, or we’re coming for you.”

Howard speaks the right words, crucial in this honeymoon phase of the job.

“The pressure is on. Beating that Team Up North is priority No. 1 on the way to the national championship and all our other goals. That’s huge and it’s everything when it comes to playing for Ohio State.”

“I know the implications and what it means to the fan base and everyone in the program. That’s the Team Up North now.”

Well done, Will Howard, the presumptive starting quarterback! One task checked off the list. Now, just flawlessly handle the other five thousand, and you’ll be golden.

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