Johnnie Dixon Keeps the Streak Alive at Eleven
By Michael Chung with Rob Ogden
For eleven-straight years, since 2004, Ohio State has had a recruit from the sunshine state. The streak was in jeopardy this year as the last spots of the 2014 class were starting to fill up and no one from Florida had committed. That all changed at around 3pm EST Dec. 17 when Johnnie Dixon pledged to be part of the 2014 OSU recruiting class that already possessed some serious speed.
At 5’ 11” 175 lbs., Dixon told the-Ozone that his fastest 40 yard dash was 4.37, just slightly behind Curtis Samuel of NY. B1G teams have much to fear as the speed on next years Ohio State team could be the fastest in the nation. If OSU lined up in a spread with the likes of Dontre Wilson, Curtis Samuel, James Clark, Devin Smith, and Dixon the offense would have five players that run a sub 4.4 which would nearly be indefensible based solely on speed. Wilson has been clocked at 4.33, Samuel at 4.36, Clark at 4.38, and Smith at 4.33. Now Johnnie Dixon’s 4.37 joins the sub 4.4 club.
Urban Meyer lamented his lack of speed on the OSU team after the 2012 National Signing Day came and went. He said: “I would say some of the things we like to do offensively, you're going to hear us talk – we want the defense to defend the width and length of the field. There's only one way to defend the width, that's flat speed. We've tried it. There's no other way that you can make a defense defend the entire width of the field. In our offense, we're still lacking that game-changer that you can hand the ball to speed-wise. I think we got some bigger guys, but we're still looking for a difference maker in one of those 10.4 100-meter guys that can change the game.” Two recruiting classes later, Meyer has his game changing speedsters.
What kind of player is Dixon? His teammate, Shawn Boone, told the-Ozone that Dixon “is a very explosive player, always working on his craft to be great, and a very hard worker. He has great speed, great route running ability, and is very physical.”
Dixon told Ozone over a year ago that Urban Meyer made Ohio State more attractive: “I grew up liking Florida when Urban Meyer was coach. They told me I would have a key role in the offense if I went there for school.”
Shawn Boone, told the-Ozone that Urban Meyer still has a legacy in the state of Florida: “I believe he still has a legacy in this state. He will always have a legacy because he won championships, but his legacy is bigger now because he is at Ohio State. Since I talked to him when I was there, he is really focused on winning and chasing national titles.”
It is clear that Urban Meyer is still a force in Florida and now the Buckeyes have their star from the sunshine state for 2014. The streak will likely continue as 2015 prospect Jamel Dean out of Cocoa, FL verbally committed for next year’s class.
I thought Ohio State was in good shape when Dixon communicated to me that he was “high” on Ohio State and set a November 30th announcement date. But the date was pushed back to Dec.8, which later became Dec. 17and rumors were surging that he was considering NC State, Alabama, and Miami.
But in the end, Dixon felt going Buckeye was best for him and will join Terry McLaurin, Parris Campbell, and Curtis Samuel, which could possibly be the fastest group of Buckeyes yet.
Urban Meyer’s 2012 lament is now a 2014 cheer.
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