Michael’s Random Thoughts From a Huge Recruiting Weekend
By Michael Chung
It sounds like Mark Pantoni let recruits know that Ohio State coaches would not have a ton of time with them on this visit. He informed them via web messages to let recruits know not to expect a lot of time from the OSU coaches, as they were focused on beating Michigan, which of course they did.
But after talking to recruits, a number of them seemed to have decent interaction from coaches. Urban Meyer made a point to go around and at least shake everyone’s hand. Meyer also had time with certain recruits. Coaches know that to beat Michigan, they need to beat TSUN for players first.
Recruits were allowed into the locker room after the game, and a number of them have said it was a highly emotional atmosphere of celebration and seniors addressing the team. Maybe the best recruiting tool the coaches have is to give future recruits a glimpse of what might be.
Some Random Thoughts
Quarterback Drew Barker has the makings of a natural leader. The 2014 quarterback from Kentucky talked to a lot of recruits while he was at “The Game” even though he does not have an OSU offer. He talked to: GA LB Raekwon McMillan, OH WR Thaddeus Snodgrass, KY WR James Quick and many current 2013 commits. With all the quarterback prospects neck-in-neck, maybe the fact that Barker is friends with a number of 2014 prospects with offers should get him over the hump for an offer.
Ohio State offensive coordinator Tom Herman saw Drew Barker on Wednesday and is expected to see his basketball practice.
Demetrius Knox was not in Ohio for the Michigan game, and he quickly committed to Texas November 26. He was stealth with me and other analysts so it was pretty obvious that he did not make the visit. There are rumors that Mack Brown could be replaced by either Gary Patterson of TCU or Nick Saban. If anything like that happened, would that reopen Knox’s recruiting? Seems doubtful, but worth keeping an eye on if something bake shakes out.
Dennis Finley mentioned to me that he felt David Dawson will be headed to Michigan State, which is bad news for the Buckeyes, who still need another offensive lineman in the class of 2013. If Finley is right that Dawson is a MSU lean, then it was bad timing for Dawson not to be at the Michigan game and watch the Buckeyes beat his "old" team from up north. Finley and Dawson are teammates and friends, so it gives MSU an advantage.
OSU commit J.T. Barrett and 2014 prospect Drew Barker both told me they wideout believe James Quick is leaning towards Ohio State over Louisville at this point. Funny how both are quarterbacks and talking to James Quick.
Barrett, Ohio State’s only quarterback commit in the 2013 class, says rehab is coming along well. Is personally working on recruiting David Dawson and says OSU and MSU lead.
Illinois DB Parrker Westphal was in Ohio this weekend and surprised coach Kerry Coombs and Mike Vrabel. Both were shocked and excited to see him, and all three talked after the game. Westphal describes their faces as “surprised” and “taken off guard.” Let’s be glad those two are good with names.
Two 4-star Ohio offensive linemen, Nick Richardson and Kyle Trout, are still without an OSU offer. Both were at the Michigan game and have talked to coaches. It sounds like an offer will come, so what is the delay?
Ohio State is getting "in" on the Ohio talent early. They offered St. Ignatius LB Kyle Berger before anyone, even MAC schools. OSU was the first school to offer him, which is proof Meyer is finally catching up on things in recruiting. He had to focus so hard on the moment when he took the job, it was hard to work without a safety net. Berg really likes Michigan and Stanford but neither have offered. The longer they wait, the longer Ohio State leads.
Georgia DB prospect Nick Glass, a UGA commit, did not make his OSU visit this weekend. He has not eliminated OSU and says Buckeyes are still No. 2, but he also has not scheduled a visit to Ohio State.
Florida LB Daniel McMillian had a great visit to OSU for the Michigan game, which is huge news for the Buckeyes. The Florida commit was hosted by one-time Gators verbal Ryan Shazier, who was in his ear about being Buckeye. I talked to McMillian while he was at the airport and it sounded like he will still be a Gator but the visit gave him much to think about. In the end, I think he stays south, but never count Urban Meyer out until it’s over.
Another St. Ignatius kid, 2014 offensive lineman Jimmy Byrne, says Notre Dame still leads but it is close with Ohio State. He had a great visit to OSU and the Buckeyes are right in this, but it’s going to be a battle.
In the spirit of good news, Georgia LB Raekwon McMillan says OSU is still his leader. Some recruits are wondering why he is waiting so long to announce (2014 Under Armour All Star Game), but even from their perspective, Raekwon really likes the Buckeyes.
Big-time Illinois LB prospect Clifton Garrett mentioned to me that he is friends with OSU targets like Raekwon McMillan and Drew Barker. He also mentioned to me that they have talked about playing with each other in the future, but Garrett does not have a leader right now and has some other “big time” schools like Oklahoma, Notre Dame, Ole Miss and Alabama recruiting him. I see this one between OSU and Ole Miss.
*That’s all for now, but be sure to check out my latest Recruiting Rundown on Sunday evening for the latest news and notes on Ohio State targets and verbal commitments. As always, thanks for reading.