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Last updated: 02/05/2013 4:51 AM

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Football Recruiting
Dontre Wilson Talks about OSU Commitment

By Brandon Castel

Dontre Wilson didn’t let a last-minute visit to Austin influence his college decision.

The star tailback out of DeSoto, Tex. just outside Dallas flipped his commitment Monday night, but not in favor of the hometown Texas Longhorns. Instead, Wilson backed out of the verbal commitment he made to Chip Kelly, opting instead to spend the next four years with Urban Meyer in Columbus.

“It’s a lot of things to think about. For me to be a young person and have all these things on mind, it’s been a lot,” he said during his live TV broadcast on FOX 4 in Dallas-Fort Worth.

“I’m used to it now but I’m ready to get it over with.”

Wilson had been committed to Oregon since the spring when he decided Kelly’s offense was perfect for his unique blend of speed and power. He was one of the top offensive players in the state Texas this past year, if not the country, and certainly one of the fastest.

He racked up over 2,600 yards of offense and 46 touchdowns as a senior at DeSoto, which plays in the Texas 5A Division, some of the best football in the entire Lone Star State.

The 4-star tailback has the kind of speed that would have fit right in with Kelly’s system up in Eugene, but now he’s going to make it work in Meyer’s uniquely explosive offense at Ohio State.

“Long hard decision,” Wilson said as he fondled the three hats in front of him. First picking up the Texas one, then Oregon before reaching for the black ballcap with the scarlet Block O in the center.

“I’ve thought about it a lot, but I’m going to the University of Ohio State.”

Close enough.

Meyer and his coaching staff will gladly educate Wilson on the proper way to say The Ohio State University when he gets to Columbus in the summer. That’s simply the price they pay for going out of state, and out of region, to snag one of the top playmakers in the country out of the heart of Texas.

Credit offensive coordinator Tom Herman, who worked under Mack Brown as a graduate assistant at Texas from 1999-2000, with cultivating a pipeline from the deep south. First it was quarterback J.T. Barrett, who developed a relationship with Wilson that may have helped in his recruitment.

Then it was 5-star linebacker Mike Mitchell, who picked OSU over Texas A&M at the U.S. Army All-American Bowl last month. Now Wilson, who had a connection with Meyer that pre-dated his decision to re-open his recruitment.

“I just feel Coach Meyer has something going there,” Wilson said Monday night.

“They could have been in the national championship if not for the bowl ban and I think I’ll be a great asset to their team.”

At 5-11, 175 pounds, Wilson is not being brought in as a traditional tailback. He will be used as a slotback in the Percy Harvin, Chris Rainey mold that Meyer used so effectively at Florida.

Along with Middletown’s Jalin Marshall, Wilson gives the Buckeyes a new element of horizontal speed that should help Braxton Miller take the OSU offense to a new level in 2013.

“They say I will get a lot of (playing time),” Wilson said, “and I’ll also be a great special teams player for the team.”

One of the key factors in his decision to flip his commitment from Oregon to Ohio State was the manner in which Chip Kelly left Eugene, basically in the middle of the night.

“He was at my school the day before he left,” Wilson said.

“I didn’t know. Someone sent a message to me and told me that he left. To me it was wrong. I’m over it now.”

He might be over it, but that won’t serve as a consolation prize for new Oregon head coach Mark Helfrich, who served as Kelly’s offensive coordinator. He will simply have to work with one less playmaker up at Oregon.

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