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OSU football coach Ryan Day remembers Dwayne Haskins: 'We are all hurting'

 Ohio State quarterback Dwayne Haskins passes against Washington during the first half of the Rose Bowl NCAA college football game Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2019, in Pasadena, Calif.
Jae C. Hong

OSU football coach Ryan Day remembers former quarterback Dwayne Haskins as someone who followed his dream of leading the Buckeyes and made it come true. Haskins died early Saturday morning after a dump truck hit him as he tried to cross a South Florida highway.

"I think that's probably one of the biggest legacies he's going to leave behind. He set a dream and he chased it, and he did it,” said Day at a news conference Monday.

Haskins, 24, led the Buckeyes to a Rose Bowl victory in 2019, ending with a 13-1 season. Haskins received MVP honors for his performance.

Day said he met with the current Buckeyes football team to discuss what had happened. Several team members had played with Haskins.

"It's too close to Saturday morning, right now it's still hard to kind of get our feet underneath us and see clearly, but we all are hurting,” said Day.

Haskins had been in Florida to compete for a starting quarterback spot with the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Day explained how Haskins’ contributions led to the Buckeyes’ success.

"My favorite game was the Maryland game,” said Day. “I thought that was the game where he really grew up. I think he had three rushing touchdowns in that game and that was back in his home state, and he was not going to be denied that day. And he showed real toughness."

Day said the team will pay tribute to Haskins at Saturday’s spring game at Ohio Stadium, although it is not yet known in what way.

“The biggest thing is to lean on each other and when you're part of a family that's what you do and that's about all you can do,” said Day.

Debbie Holmes has worked at WOSU News since 2009. She has hosted All Things Considered, since May 2021. Prior to that she was the host of Morning Edition and a reporter.