Michael’s Sunday Recruiting Rundown
Looking Back at Nebraska and Ahead to Michigan
By Michael Chung
(Editor’s Note: This is the latest contribution to the-Ozone for Michael Chung. He has provided OSU recruiting information to several websites in the past, but now will be exclusive to the-Ozone as we look to bring more football recruiting coverage in the coming months. You can follow him on Twitter @MChungOzone).
Every week is a big week in recruiting, especially in Ohio State’s first season with Urban Meyer as head coach. After the biggest recruiting weekend of the season, OSU fans should now have a better idea of where things are going with the Buckeyes for 2013 and beyond. With 4-5 spots left for the 2013 class, things are shaping up quickly.
The atmosphere for last weeks Nebraska game was amazing and many recruits were blown away by the intensity, noise and play of the Buckeyes.
With all of the OSU fans in Bloomington this weekend, IU recruits may have felt that they were on an OSU visit.
Meyer has cast a wide net and is all over the place trying to recruit the best players to come to Columbus. Meyer knows that to win BCS titles, he will need the best players and the best players he is going after. Here is this week’s recruiting round up.
Dorian Johnson (6-6, 280, OL, 2013 Belle Vernon, Pa.)
Johnson told The-Ozone that Pitt was his leader, and it seemed that for Ohio State to have a chance at landing Johnson, they needed to blow him away on his visit during the Nebraska game. And blow him away Ohio State did. We are hearing that Johnson and those around him were highly impressed with Meyer and Ohio State. Johnson is on the record saying that he is planning to return for the Michigan game and that he is unsure whether or not that visit will be his official visit, meaning he may visit Ohio State a third time after the season. Everything Ohio State needed to do they did. He is still stating that Pitt is the leader but Ohio State has definitely closed the gap. Virginia Tech seems to be unofficially eliminated, but this one could still go down to the wire. You can read his Ozone interview here.
Shelton Gibson (6-1, 175, WR, 2013 Cleveland Heights, Ohio)
Gibson has had Ohio State on top for a while and nothing has changed following his visit for the Nebraska game. He had a really great time and we’re hearing he even stayed behind to hang out with his good friend, and former high school teammate, Kyle Dodson. Rumors of grades being the factor preventing his commitment pervade, something that Ozone has not yet been able to confirm. He is the top WR prospect in Ohio and is at a position of need for Tom Herman’s explosive offense. Brad Bournival of ESPN writes,
“The Buckeyes have long been Gibson’s top choice, but the atmosphere from Saturday’s Ohio State-Nebraska game put the Buckeyes over the top for the 5-foot-11, 173-pound Gibson, who is ranked 196th in the nation.”
In the end, it’s hard not to see Gibson choosing Ohio State and becoming a Buckeye by National Signing Day.
James Quick (6-0, 180, WR, 2013, Louisville, Ky., Trinity HS)
James Quick has had Louisville on top for a long time so he too needed to be blown away by his Ohio State visit. It sounded like his visit went really well but it did not sound like Ohio State moved ahead of Louisville. He tweeted, “Leaving Columbus.. Back to the Ville... I was very impressed! Fun night....” If anything, Ohio State moved even with Louisville but did not move ahead. Some feel that Quick has moved OSU ahead of Louisville and one recruit told me that Cam Burrows spent a lot of time talking to him, but in the end, I still see Quick staying in KY and playing for Charlie Strong and the Cardinals. Rumors swirl that Strong will be the next coach at Arkansas, if he leaves, does Quick quickly switch to the Buckeyes? Or does he follow Strong to the SEC?
Chris Worley (6-2, 185, ATH, Cleveland-Glenville HS)
Worley was at the Nebraska game with fellow Tarblooders Marcelys Jones and Marshon Lattimore. It sounded like all three had a great time and Jones indicated to me that Worley, himself and Lattimore would all like to stay together and play at the same college. With such a rich history of Tarblooders at OSU and all three having an OSU offer, I see Worley flowing down the pipeline from Cleveland’s Glenville high school to Ohio State. He would likely be a linebacker which the Buckeyes desperately need right now as there are no linebackers committed to the 2013 class.
Tony Stevens (6-3, 175, WR, Orlando, FL, Evans HS)
This Florida State commit actually de-committed from the Seminoles last week and then recently reaffirmed his commitment to the Seminoles. A source in Florida told me that he still believes Stevens will chose Ohio State before it’s all said and done. Stevens has been tough for most people to get a hold of since his public de-commitment then re-commitment, but it certainly seems Meyer has been relentlessly recruiting Stevens, causing h im to doubt his FSU commitment and being open to another school. Stevens still has an OSU visit scheduled so until he cancels the visit, it’s not a far cry to expect that he will end up at OSU, if for no other reason than because Urban Meyer is such a hard recruiter and is likely the cause of his original de-commitment. But we shall see.
Levonte Whitfield (5-9, 176, WR, Orlando, Fla., Jones HS)
This FSU commit has not stated anywhere publicly that he is de-committing from FSU but Urban remains on him as well. He possesses sub 4.4 speed, the kind Urban Meyer covets. Though he has not de-committed, he has stated to me that he plans to visit Ohio State after the season. If he comes on campus and there a spots open for the 2013 class, Urban will try to flip this Seminole to the Buckeyes. It would be a coup of coups if Whitfield would join the 2013 class.
Mike Trout (6-6, 280, OL, Lancaster, Ohio)
This giant of a man had a great time at Ohio State last weekend for the Nebraska game. He talked to defensive coordinator Luke Fickell and Coach Fickell told Trout that “after the season, when the coaches get their heads on straight, good things will happen.” But Trout may not wait till the end of the season, as he already has a B1G offer from Michigan State. Ohio State desperately needs offensive lineman, so can they really afford to wait? If they do, this Trout may get off the hook.
*That is all for this week, but please check beck next week for my next Sunday Recruiting Rundown on The-Ozone. We will have an interview with 2014 prospect Myles Autry and hopefully a whole lot more from Ozone recruiting. Thanks for reading.