Nathan Williams expected to debut

Updated: September 9, 2010, 12:07 PM ET
By Adam Rittenberg | ESPN.com

Ohio State junior defensive end Nathan Williams is expected to make his season debut Saturday against No. 12 Miami, although likely in a limited role.

Williams entered preseason camp as a projected starter but sustained a sprained left knee and missed several weeks. He practiced Sunday, and Buckeyes head coach Jim Tressel expects him to practice Tuesday afternoon.

"He'll be ready to go [for the game]," Tressel said, "but the question is what type of football shape he'll be in because he missed significant time in the preseason."

The 6-foot-3, 260-pound Williams recorded 26 tackles, including eight for loss and three sacks in 2009. Solomon Thomas started in his place Thursday in the season opener against Marshall.

Tressel also said Tuesday that linebacker Etienne Sabino, once thought to be the front-runner for a starting job, is likely headed for a redshirt season after being beaten out by Andrew Sweat.

Adam Rittenberg covers Big Ten football for ESPN.com. He can be reached at espnritt@gmail.com.