Keystone Giant Still Planning Ohio State Visit?
By Michael Chung
While the 2014 recruiting class is barreling down the tracks at record speed, there are still some big targets left on the 2013 list. One of the most coveted is 6-6, 280-pound offensive lineman Dorian Johnson out of Belle Vernon, Pa.
Johnson is a 4-star rated recruit by ESPN, Rivals and Scout, while 247 Sports has him rated as a 5-star prospect and the No. 2 offensive tackle recruit in the country. He was previously committed to Penn State but de-committed after the NCAA slammed the Nittany Lions with scholarship reductions and a four-year bowl ban.
With Ohio State low on offensive linemen for 2013, and Johnson being one of the most highly-rated prospects left on the board, Urban Meyer and his staff will work hard to recruit Johnson to Columbus.
It has been rumored that Pitt leads for Johnson since his de-commitment, while the Buckeyes appear to be in the mix. Are the rumors true? Do the Buckeyes have a chance at this Keystone giant? Is this a two horse race? He recently took time to answer questions from The-Ozone.
Ozone: It has been said that Pitt is your current leader, is this true?
Johnson: For right now, yes. I like the coaching staff and have had more opportunities to be around them.
Ozone: Tell us about your visit to Pitt?
Johnson: I did visit Pitt for the Va. Tech game. We (family and I) did not stay around too long, just mainly went to the game. I talked to (offensive coordinator Joe) Rudolph and Dann Kabala, who is the recruiting coordinator. Did not talk to coach (Paul) Chryst.
Ozone: Of the three coaching staffs, OSU, Virginia Tech and Pitt, which staff are you closest too?
Johnson: For right now, I am closest to Pitt.
Ozone: Which of the 3 schools do you have the most friends at? Is there anyone in OSU’s 2013 class that is trying to recruit you?
Johnson: I definitely have more friends at Pitt, not too many from other schools. I have talked to Cam Burrows a couple of times and have talked to Ezekiel Elliot a while ago. Cam Burrows texts me once every three weeks.
Ozone: Tell me what led up to your Penn State de-commitment?
Johnson: It was not the same place I committed to. I did not like the reduction in scholarships, I did not like the fact that I would not be able to play in a bowl game, it was not the same place.
Ozone: What are the 3 most important factors in your school choice?
Johnson: Closest to home, good relationships with coaches and my family has to like the coaches.
Ozone: If you had to pick a school today, who would it be?
Johnson: It would be tough, most likely Pitt.
Ozone: How important is it that you play close to home? How much further is OSU from your house than Pitt?
Johnson: It is important to play close to home but Ohio State is not far away at all, 2 ½ hours away, the same distance it was to Penn State. Pitt is half an hour away from my home.
Ozone: What makes you interested in OSU?
Johnson: Coach Meyer is there and he will turn the team around and have a really good football team. Coach Ed Warinner is a really good offensive line coach and can help me get to the NFL. Ohio State is Ohio State, a great school.
Ozone: When do you think you will decide on your school?
Johnson: I will visit Ohio State for the Nebraska game and also probably take an official visit after the season. I will not decide till after season and take officials then. I think I will decide in late November or December which school I will attend.
Ozone Quick Hitters with Dorian Johnson:
What is your favorite sports team? Pittsburgh Steelers
What is one thing about you that people may find odd? I don’t eat a lot. I have always been big guy but I do not have a big appetite.
Best place to eat in PA? The Original Hot Dog Factory, they have all kinds of foods, not just hot dogs. I like their cheese steaks.
Phillies or Pirates? Pirates, I keep up with them on ESPN.
Tennis or Golf? Golf
One person you want to meet? Patrick Willis, linebacker for the San Francisco 49ers.
Major? Sports Management
*Thank you again Dorian for taking time to talk to us. We hope you continue to have great visits to your schools and we also hope you have a great season.
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