Football Recruiting

Tony Alford Tired of Talking Recruiting Misses, Confident Miyan Williams Is a Hit

Miyan Williams Ohio State Football Buckeyes Running Back

This time a year ago, most Buckeye fans didn’t know who current Ohio State freshman running back Miyan Williams was.

Back then, he was coming off of a junior season at Winton Woods in Cincinnati where he had just rushed for over 2,800 yards and was the runner-up for Ohio’s 2018 Mr. Football.

He eventually received an Ohio State offer in September and committed two months later. And even into the summer before that offer, many weren’t necessarily paying attention to Williams.

In June and July, most of the attention was on 5-star Arizona running back Bijan Robinson and 4-star Florida Jaylan Knight. There was a time when it looked like both would end up in the Buckeyes’ 2020 recruiting class. Things fell through for both players, however, and neither ended up at Ohio State.

The September offer to Williams finally sealed things up at running back for the Buckeyes, but it didn’t stop the questions. Williams, after all was the No. 45 tailback in the nation, which was quite the contrast from Robinson, who ended up as the nation’s No. 1 running back.

Buckeyes’ running back coach Tony Alford was pressed throughout the year on what happened at running back, despite the fact that he wasn’t permitted to talk about it. Even to this day with commitments from the No. 2 and No. 5 running backs in the 2021 class, Alford is still being asked what went wrong last year.

“Let me say this, and I’m not gonna lie to you, I get tired of talking about last year, quite frankly. Good, bad, or indifferent,” Alford said. “I’ll tell you this, next year I’ll get tired of talking about this class.”

Every team has a recruiting board of players, and those players are all ranked. Just because Williams wasn’t at the top of Ohio State’s list doesn’t mean he should be carrying the ball somewhere else, and Alford wants everyone to know it.

“But I will say this, if we want to talk about last year’s class, Miyan Williams is a really good player,” Alford said. “I’m really excited to have Miyan Williams part of our room and our group and our football team. So I want to make sure that that is very clear.”

Williams wasn’t slated to enroll until this summer, so he has yet to go through the winter workouts. He also didn’t get a chance to visit and just be around the team during spring practice.

That will put him behind everyone else in the running back room, but that’s generally how it goes for true freshmen on a deep team.

“The guys that are here, they know the offense. So Miyan’s still gonna have to learn this thing, and would,” Alford said. “So we’re doing that and we’re continuing to do that with him. But I gotta get him ready to go because the one thing that a guy like him, proximity wise, he would be able to come up and watch practice and see some things and kind of get his feet wet by by sight. And being here, sitting in and kind of watching practice.

“So since he doesn’t have that, the learning curve is gonna be a little bit steeper. But that’s also why we coach. That’s why they call us a coach. We’ve got to get them ready to go by whatever means necessary, and we’ll certainly try to get that done.”

8 Responses

  1. Yeah, all that is fine. But…all still want the five stars. If TTUN was getting all of the B1G top classes – the tune would be much different. Whether you want to believe it or not – ultimately stars (and development) matter. Outliers such as Whisky and perhaps Boise State are anomalies – but make no mistake, there is a reason the good guys are dominating the B1G and are always in the discussion for playoffs and Natty’s – its recruiting. All the dollars that are spent on the recruiting budget is not going out to get 2 and 3 stars unless they are undervalued.

  2. “Tired of talking recruiting misses”?

    If so, then DON’T. Why? Because this behavior mis-characterizes the attitudes Coach Day has espoused.

    Recognize…Identify…Recover! Then, your error becomes a mistake….

    Then, this common ‘weakness’ of ours, can become a strength in accuracy and demonstrated humility upholding fundamental standards.

    nb: if you do this…the beautiful, better people will …attack or scatter.

  3. first, star ratings are… quite subjective & conflicted as a evaluation method, and a large reason is the conflicted subjectivity of the raters.

    in our See of Subjectivity, there are excellent raters some of the time, and all of the raters none of the time.

    Individuals are in constant change… in many ways. D’oh.

    ====> so… when “I have a good feeling” about #45 … YOU KNOW he’s gonna be the only 2 time Heisman winner!!!

    Your feelings? LOL

    IF… is a mighty big word.

    And only Merlin “knows how it all turns out”…but doesn’t know “the sometimes” …of what ‘happened’ to him.


  4. Miyan Williams is a 3 star recruit. Another player who was a 3 star recruit (according to 11W) not too long ago is Michael Thomas. He had a very good Buckeye career and is having a spectacular NFL career. The lesson here is performance on the field is much more important than star rankings. I think Miyan will do well.

    1. Pretty sure some kid named AJ Hawk was 3-star as well.

      1. Funny how a 3 star kid, like Hawk, can blossom with the best coaching in college football!

    2. I have a good feeling about this kid. Seems like a tough get and he produces. But it is ridiculous to name a 3 star player and say he turned out great. so have some walk ons. But anybody can name hundreds of 5 stars and say they were great.Anybody would rather have a 5 star than a 3 star, but sometimes it doesnt work out. But if you go by %s then you want a 5 star.

      1. Nailed it, Hank!

        A live person is not some dead % or *….or object or ‘partial’…. “to go by”.

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