Five for Friday: Best Recruiting Weeks in OSU History (or at least since 2003)
By Tony Gerdeman
In the last eight days, the Buckeyes have received verbal commitments from defensive end Jalyn Holmes, quarterback Stephen Collier, receiver Terry McLaurin and offensive tackle Jamarco Jones. It has been a very successful whirlwind.
That whirlwind got me wondering about the best recruiting weeks in Ohio State history. However, since the internet only goes back to 2003, I had to limit how far back in history I could go. (Sort of like Ohio State when it comes to looking for precedent for postseason bans.)
This past week has been a good one, but has it been the best ever?
(The dates that I am using all come from Scout.com.)
1. April 21-27, 2007
The Buckeyes received commitments from five-star offensive linemen Michael Brewster and J.B. Shugarts, as well as four-star defensive end Nathan Williams. All would become starters and integral parts of the Ohio State football program. It was the second month in a row where the Buckeyes landed a pair of five-star prospects in the span of a week.
2. February 6-12, 2005
There were only two commits this particular week, but they were the first two commits of the 2006 class and they set the tone very early. Beanie Wells was a five-star prospect and the #1 running back in the nation. He had an immediate impact for the Buckeyes. Ross Homan committed one day after Wells. He played in all 13 games and had 28 tackles as a freshman.
3. July 9-15, 2006
Nobody would have guessed it at the time, but this particular week saw the Buckeyes land two future team MVPs. On July 9th, Toledo Central Catholic receiver Dane Sanzenbacher committed to the Buckeyes after earning an offer at camp. One day later, Warren's Daniel "Boom" Herron became the second tailback to commit in the 2007 class.
4. December 12-18, 2004
The Buckeyes landed a pair of three-star three-year starters, and one of them was also a three-time All-American. It all started on December 12th when a little-known athlete out of Georgia named Anderson Russell committed to Ohio State. One day later, Minnesota linebacker James Laurinaitis committed to the Buckeyes, backing out of his commitment to the Gophers.
5. December 17-23, 2002
This particular week could have been one for the ages. Instead, the Buckeyes only managed to find a couple of NFL defensive backs. The first domino to fall was Texas cornerback Ashton Youboty, who was just a three-star prospect. Five days later, the Buckeyes got commitments from Glenville cornerbacks Donte Whitner and Dareus "Superman" Hiley. That same day, Scout's #10 defensive tackle Brandon Maupin committed as well. Things didn't pan out for Hiley and Maupin, but Youboty and Whitner alone were more than enough.
Bonus: January 30-February 5, 2005
There's always action around signing day, and 2005 was no different. In fact, Jim Tressel was still waiting for Lawrence Wilson's letter of intent while talking to the media about the 2005 signees. There was also a pair of unheralded recruits in receiver Brian Robiskie and cornerback Donald Washington, both of whom became important starters in their careers.
Bonus: March 10-16, 2007
It seems strange that a week where the Buckeyes landed two five-star prospects wouldn't make it into the top five. However, when you consider that those two prospects were Mike Adams and Devier Posey, you also have to think about the bad with the good.
Bonus: December 26 - January 1, 2007-2008
If Urban Meyer was doing this list, this week probably would have ended up number one. It was December 26, 2007 when Youngstown's John Simon committed to the Buckeyes. Who knows where Meyer's first season with OSU ends up without Simon. Three days later, Toledo's Jack Mewhort committed. That same day, fullback Adam Homan joined the class as well.
Bonus: January 25-31, 2007
Two of the more solid players of the last decade became Buckeyes this particular week. Glenville's Jermale Hines committed to the Buckeyes, not knowing what position he would ultimately end up at. Six days later, the Buckeyes got a commitment from Peachtree Ridge's Cameron Heyward, which continued a very productive Georgia pipeline for the Buckeyes.
Bonus: December 12-18, 2011
We can't truly rank this one yet because there's just not enough data. However, the impact of this week should be felt greatly this season. Two weeks into his job, Urban Meyer flipped defensive linemen Se'Von Pittman and Tommy Schutt. Pittman is now gone, but Schutt is slated to start as a sophomore. Six days later, Meyer landed a commitment from defensive end Noah Spence, who has his coaches supremely excited for this season.
Bonus: February 4-10, 2013
The problem with putting this particular week on this list is that I saw weeks like this dotting the landscape as I did my research. There have been weeks with four or five commitments that were absolutely huge at the time, but just didn't pan out. Will this group be different? Urban Meyer hopes so. The fun got started on the Monday before signing day when tailback Dontre Wilson committed. But it really got ramped up on signing day when the Buckeyes landed Vonn Bell, James Clark and Ezekiel Elliott. Each of these prospects have tons of promise. If they pan out, this could end up being the best recruiting week in Ohio State history...since 2003.
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