Sunday Recruiting Rundown Aug. 11
By Michael Chung
Recruiting news was fairly slow this week. OSU is at 16 commits and today marks a media day for OSU so Buckeye coaches have their focus on the season and recruiting may have taken a back seat. But the world of recruiting is a 24/7, 365 days a week job that never stops and since they do not stop, the-Ozone will not stop either.
Buckeye nation is still awaiting Curtis Samuel’s decision as he recently visited Rutgers and sources indicated a decision is looming. 4-star WR Saeed Blacknall committed to Rutgers over LSU. Blacknall decided to stay home instead of travel down to LA. Saeed was also considering Alabama and Ohio State but the Buckeyes never seemed to make a big splash with Saeed. Could this influence Samuel? As of now, it looks like Curtis is coming to Columbus.
Kirk Tucker, a DB out of GA also committed to Stanford. He had OSU in his final two. Why did Ozone readers not hear much about Blacknall and Tucker? I never really saw them as legitimate prospects for OSU so I did not take them too seriously. I was right.
Here is this week’s rundown.
Raekwon McMillan (6-3, 235, LB, Hinesville, GA)
He told the-Ozone back in August of 2012 that Ohio State was his leader and after visiting a number of schools, it does not appear that Ohio State has left this 5-star prospect’s mantle as the No. 1 choice. He released the schools he will visit and they are: Georgia, Clemson, Alabama, Florida and the Buckeyes. He also listed Ole Miss in his top 6 but they do not have an OV as of now. Almost one year ago, he told the-Ozone that his top schools were: 1. Ohio State, 2. Georgia, 3. Clemson, and 4. Alabama in that order. Comparing the two lists, nothing much has changed and I will be shocked if on Jan. 2 in Tampa, FL Raekwon does not dawn the Ohio State cap. He will officially visit OSU for the Penn State game. Read his the-Ozone interview here.
Chad Mavety (6’6” 320, OL, 2014, Garden City, NY)
Though he does not have a top 3, OSU, Alabama, and Florida State are recruiting him the hardest. He also said that he talks to Urban Meyer a little more than Saban and Fischer so maybe OSU may have a slight advantage but word is that if Mavety wants to commit, there is room for him. Sources also inform me that OSU has not been in contact with Jermaine Eluemunor since his Arkansas commitment, and Mavety was their man all along as Urban Meyer did not stop recruiting Eluemunor after he verbaled to UCLA but has since ceased. With Knox in, Bookser and Prince highly interested, it looks like OSU has had Mavety in their sites all along.
It was reported that Urban Meyer has officially taken over OT Chad Mavety’s recruitment. What does this look like? Meyer is talking to Mavety a lot but Mavety says that coach Ed Warinner and he talk almost daily. He says he talks to Urban Meyer more than the other 2 head coaches but “not by much.” FSU will be the most stiff competition as one of his best friends is on the team but Urban Meyer can basically guarantee the starting Left Tackle job if Mavety commits to OSU which I believe he will.
Chris Hardeman (5’8” 175, DB, 2014, Houston, TX)
Chris Hardeman had an early OSU offer but committed to the LSU Tigers early. He told the-Ozone that he just felt LSU was not right for him anymore and reopened his recruitment. Damon Webb, Dante Booker, and Demetrius Knox have all tried to recruit Hardeman in the past but it is not looking like the OSU coaches are trying hard to jump back into this one. Since Hardeman’s de-commitment, coaches from Arkansas, Nebraska, OU, Houston, Georgia, UCLA, Oregon, Ole Miss, Oklahoma St. have contacted him says Max Olson of ESPN. It was reported via twitter that Hardeman committed to Oklahoma State this morning. This was a shock because during his Ozone interview, I got the impression he was a long way away from deciding. I guess I was wrong. Read Chris’s the-Ozone interview here.
Mike Gesicki (6’6” 237, TE, 2014 Manahawkin, NJ)
Gesicki has a top 6 of: Miami (Fla.), Rutgers, Florida State, Penn State, Wisconsin and Ohio State. He is making the rounds having visited schools like Florida State, Miami (FL), Wisconsin to name a few. He says he will announce at the end of October or early November but a source revealed to me that Gesicki wanted to commit to OSU but Urban Meyer asked him to wait. I am trying to reach Gesicki for an interview and we have connected but I still have not been able to hear his side of the story. As of now, it looks like scholarship limits are preventing him from being part of the 2014 class though he possesses the physical “freakishness” Urban Meyer covets, at 6’6” and running a 4.52 40 at OSU, he possesses the ability to dominate.
Noah Brown (6’2” 210, WR, 2014 Sparta, NJ)
HBO films should do a reality show on recruiting because there is always something interesting and changing in this world. It was once reported by Todderick Hunt of NJ.com that OSU is one of the three schools recruiting him the hardest, the other two being Virginia Tech and Rutgers. Hunt writes that Ohio State “are a national powerhouse with coach (Urban) Meyer. They told me I'm their No. 1 receiver on their board, right now. I'm a priority for them and I can flourish in their offense."
Recruiting analysts believed that Brown would commit shortly after his July 24th visit. The month of July has come and gone and no commitment on Brown’s part. What is also odd is that Brown’s tweets recently do not indicate an OSU interest. Noah Brown has tweeted that he has received offers from UNC, VT, Rutgers, ND, Mich. St., Soth Carolina, and Vandy but no OSU. It looks like Brown maybe another victim of the scholarship reductions imposed on OSU from Tat-gate.
Justin Hilliard (6’2” 225 LB, 2015, Cincinnati, OH)
Ozone contributor Craig Henman interviewed Hilliard this past week. A four-star prospect in the class of 2015, 247 ranks him as Ohio's #1 prospect. He is rated as the #4 2015 outside linebacker in the nation and has offers from Ohio State, Notre Dame, Michigan, Iowa, Miami, Michigan State, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Penn State, Texas A&M and South Carolina, among many others. He told Craig Henman: "Location will not be an issue for me . . . I want to have a great relationship with the team’s position coach and also with the strength and conditioning coach. Those are the two people that you spend the majority of your time with."
Henman also writes, “Hilliard’s coach at St. Xavier, Steve Specht, believes that the Ohio State staff got off to a good start in that regard earlier this summer.
‘He started to develop a relationship with Coach [Luke] Fickell this summer when he attended camp and Ohio State finally offered,’ Specht said. ‘He enjoyed the trip and really enjoyed spending time with Urban Meyer and company.’”
With Urban Meyer and Kerry Coombs pushing the Queen City, do not be surprised if Hilliard stays close to home and comes north to Columbus.
Later this week Craig Henman will have an interview with Texas 2015 DL prospect James Lockhart and Ozone is still trying to reach others to hear their side of the recruiting story. Stay tuned for some more rockin’ recruiting reports.
2014 OSU commitment list