- Adam Rittenberg, ESPN Staff Writer
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Ohio State sophomore strong safety C.J. Barnett likely will miss the rest of the season following knee surgery.
Barnett, who started the first two games for the Buckeyes, suffered a right knee injury late in the third quarter of Saturday's 36-24 win against Miami.
Coach Jim Tressel confirmed Tuesday that Barnett needs surgery and likely will miss the rest of the year.
The 6-foot, 190-pound Barnett moved into the starting spot following a preseason injury to Orhian Johnson and performed well in the first two games, recording several hard hits and a pass breakup that likely saved a touchdown against Miami.
"We really hate to lose him," Tressel said, "because I thought he was playing very physical and he was really starting to learn the game."
Tressel expects Johnson, who has recovered from a pulled calf muscle, to step into Barnett's place.
Adam Rittenberg covers Big Ten football for ESPN.com. He can be reached at email@example.com.