There's a cliche that defenses are always ahead of the offenses in all-star games.
Ohio head coach Eric Schumacher believes he's got the pieces in place for a stout defensive unit when the Buckeye State meets West Virginia on Sunday, July 29 in the 67th annual Rudy Mumley OVAC All-Star Charity Football Classic.
Schumacher has chosen his defensive linemen and linebackers, which will report to training camp Sunday at Bethany College.
''Our defensive linemen are pretty agile and quick and we think our linebacking corp will be one of the strengths of our team,'' Schumacher said. ''Our linebackers will probably be the focal point of our defense and our defensive linemen should allow them to make some plays. Our guys have the speed to go side-to-side well.''
Here's a capsule look at the players who returned their information sheets:
ERIC BLACK, Meadowbrook - The former Colt was a tackling machine for Coach Jesse Wells' squad last season.
The 5-foot-11, 210 pounder was in on 110 tackles, including 68 solo and eight for loss. He broke up six passes, forced two fumbles, picked off a pass and blocked a kick.
Black was a first team All-OVAC, All-ECOL and All-Eastern District pick.
Eric, who is the son of Dwaine and Spring Black of Cumberland, is planning on attending Marietta College.
SHANE CRUM, Shenandoah - This former Zep was a two-way standout for Coach Tim Wilson's squad.
The 6-1, 220 pounder ran for 1,076 yards and had 80 tackles from his linebacker spot.
Crum was a first team All-OVAC, All-Eastern District, All-PVC and honorable mention All-Ohio.
Shane, who is heading to Mt. Union, is the son of Steve Crum and Sherry Morrison.
MIKE DALTO, Bridgeport - He was a standout along the defensive line for Coach Rudy Vavrock's team.
The 6-1, 260 pounder made 70 tackles, had seven sacks and 16 tackles for loss last season.
Dalto was a first team All-OVAC, All-Eastern District, and All-Valley pick. He was also a Big 22 Award finalist.
Mike, who is the son of Mike and Missy Dalto of Lansing, is undecided about his college plans.
MATT HAMMOND, Shadyside - This former Tiger was tough to block as a standout for Mark Holenka's team.
The 6-1, 190 pounder had 87 tackles, five sacks, three blocked punts, three blocked kicks and a fumble recovery. He had 100 tackles and 18 sacks as a senior.
He was third team All-Ohio as a senior, first team All-Eastern District, All-OVAC, All-Times Leader, Shadyside Lineman of the Year and was nominated as a Block of Granite.
Matt, who is the son of Clyde and Kathy Hammond of Shadyside, is planning on attending Belmont College.
BRANDYN HEATH, Beallsville - This former Blue Devil wore all sorts of hats for Coach Dave Caldwell's team.
The 6-1, 150 pounder was the Blue Devils' tailback, nose guard and place kicker.
He was a first team All-Valley, All-District and All-OVAC pick.
Brandon, who is the son of Patti Heath and Michael Heath, is undecided about his future plans.
LESHAWN LUKE, Steubenville - This former Big Red linebacker was a tackling machine for Coach Reno Saccoccia's squad.
The 5-7, 200 pounder recorded 112 tackles and an interception from his linebacker spot. Offensively, he ran for 567 yards and nine touchdowns.
Luke was named team MVP, All-Valley and special mention All-district.
LeShawn, who is the son of Kim and Charmayne Morgan of Steubenville, is planning on attending Mt. Union.
GREG RING, Buckeye Local - He was a two-way tackle for Coach Anthony Barsch's team last season.
The 6-1, 332 pounder had 61 solo tackles, 6.5 sacks, three forced fumbles, four fumble recoveries and eight blocked kicks.
Ring was a firs team All-OVAC, All-Buckeye 8, All-Eastern District and All-Times Leader selection. He was also a standout in basketball.
Greg, who is undecided about his college plans, is the son of Georgette Burge of Yorkville.
SETH RUTLEDGE, Conotton Valley - This former Rocket becomes the first player from his school to earn a spot in the game after a strong senior season.
He was an All-OVAC performer each of the past two seasons.
Along with football, Rutledge was a member of the basketball team and served on the OVAC Varsity Board.
Seth, who is the son of John and Marsha Rutledge, plans on attending Owens Community College.
MATT SHURINA, Harrison Central - This former Husky standout was a two-way tackle for Coach Justin Kropka's team.
The 5-10, 200 pounder had 55 tackles, three sacks, three tackles for loss and he forced a fumble.
For his fine season, Shurina was named first team All-Eastern District and All-Buckeye 8.
Along with football, Shurina was a standout in wrestling, qualifying for the Division II state tournament each of his last two season.
Matt, who is the son of Robert and Frances Shurina of Cadiz, is planning on attending Heidelberg University.
JESSE STOUDT, Barnesville - This former Shamrock was a wrecking ball on the defensive side for Coach Luke Johnson's squad.
The 6-0, 220 pounder had 104 tackles, six sacks, three fumble recoveries and an interception from his linebacker spot. He finished his career with 317 tackles.
Stoudt was a second team All-Ohioan at linebacker after being chosen first team All-Eastern District, All-OVAC and All-Times Leader.
Jesse, who is planning on attending Tiffin University, is the son of George and Sheri Stoudt of Barnesville.