Sunday Recruiting Rundown Oct.3
By Michael Chung
Last weekend saw over 50 prospects grace the confines of the Shoe. A raucous crowd of over 100,000, most who visited Ohio State were blown away.
This week was a sea of purple and red as the Buckeyes travelled to Evanston, IL for a night game. People who have long memories remember when OSU went into Evanston for a night game in 2004 and lost, but this is a new team under a new coach and the Buckeyes came away with a 40-30 victory.
With no home game this weekend and no visitors on campus, one would expect little recruiting news, but the world of recruiting never stops.
Raekwon McMillan (6’3” 235 LB, 2014 Hinesville, GA)
Until Raekwon finally decides, he will be a regular in the rundown. Raekwon is taking his visits and appears to have a good time on all of them. Most recently, he visited Georgia for the LSU game and told Michael Carvell of the Atlanta Journal Constitution that the visit was a ten. He also said: “My trip to Georgia was a great visit,” McMillan told the AJC on Monday night. “I got there early Saturday morning and left there late on Sunday night. Georgia really gave me a good reason to stay in-state, and really helped their chances with me going to Georgia.”
McMillan later confessed that Georgia is now in his top 3 with Clemson and the Buckeyes, replacing Alabama, bad news for Nick Saban. At this point, I would say that this bodes well for the Buckeyes. Raekwon has visited quiet a few times to OSU and his parents have already seen the campus. Raekwon is still coming on an official visit for the Penn State game and I believe that visit will seal the deal for Ohio State. Buckeye fans should only worry when Raekwon decides to move Ohio State out of the top 3, like he did Alabama, but ever since he interviewed with Ozone over a year ago, Raekwon has had OSU in the lead or tied for the lead and has even hinted that he may announce on Christmas day, which could communicate he is close to making up his mind. Georgia certainly is in play and in the end; I think the Buckeyes battle the Bulldogs for Kwon with the Buckeyes coming out on top.
Travis Rudolph (6’0” 190, WR, 2014, West Palm Beach, FL)
Rudolph will visit Tennessee and Alabama. Most believe Ohio State is in a fight with Alabama, Vanderbilt, Florida State, and Florida with Florida State the team to beat but Rudolph has gone on record that he will not announce until Jan.2 during the Under Armour All-Star game. If Raekwon McMillan also waits till then, could the Buckeyes have a bountiful beginning to the New Year? Stephen Collier raves about Rudolph and is hoping he becomes a Buckeye but it looks like Ohio State is being very selective here. There just may not be space for him if he wants to commit. We will see. Clearly at one point, Ohio State recruited Rudolph hard. Are they still recruiting him hard?
Johnnie Dixon (5’11” 175, WR, 2014, Palm Beach Garden, FL)
This will be a battle between Alabama, Miami, NC State, and Ohio State. Dixon had a great time last weekend according to sources but did not commit or seem close. He will be visiting Alabama for the LSU game in November. Jeff Greer of the Palm Beach Post reports that NC State is a player for Dixon and others: “former Dwyer teammate Jacoby Brissett is sitting out a year after transferring from Florida.
Brissett’s presence at NC State alone puts the Wolfpack in the hunt for Dixon, who originally said he’d pick from Alabama, Miami and Ohio State. Boone and fellow Dwyer receiver Clint Stephens also have offers from NC State, which helps the Wolfpack’s chances with Dixon.”
John “Ju Ju” Smith (6’ 1.5” 185, ATH, 2014, Long Beach, CA)
Ohio State was the first of five visits for Smith. He will next officially visit Notre Dame (10/18), then to Oregon (10/25), Alabama (11/8), and the final visit will be to Michigan (11/30) and he will decide sometime afterwards. Scott Kennedy of Scout.com writes, “A two way star for his Long Beach Poly team, Smith is a graceful safety who excels in pass coverage. He is an excellent wide receiver and could see himself on either side of the ball in college. His flexibility and burst may best be used in the defensive backfield on the next level. He has a great frame and continues to add muscle mass since the end of his junior season to become more physically imposing.”
Most have Smith going to USC, UCLA, Alabama, or Notre Dame. I do see him staying out West but am curious to hear his top list after his Oregon visit. With OSU wanting Erick Smith at safety and hoping to add a Florida speedster at WR, I would be surprised if Smith came to Columbus. But with Urban Meyer, anything is possible.
Thomas Holley (6’5” 290 DL, 2014, Brooklyn, NY)
After mini-confusion on when Holley will visit, it was confirmed that the Iowa game weekend will be the date (Oct 19th weekend). The Buckeyes will be in a fight with Penn State and Notre Dame but do not count out Alabama and Syracuse. Brian Dohn of Scout.com writes, “Holley became playing football as a junior and is raw power. He has the power to overwhelm an offensive lineman and he has very good feet. He changes direction well for a big man and runs plays down. He can shed blocks because of his strength, but he needs to refine his technique and do a better job of using his hands. He only played eight games as a junior after making the move from basketball.”
Holley’s last visit to Ohio State was a great one and if his official surpasses it then look for the NY/NJ pipeline to continue to flow with Thomas Holley joining Curtis Samuel and Noah Brown with the hope of Chad Mavety and Mike Gesicki also flowing down to Columbus.
This week on the-Ozone.net recruiting, we will have an interview with Cleveland-Glenville star DB Erick Smith. I will also give my October edition of who will finish out the 2014 class. So far, after previous monthly prediction articles, someone on my list has committed. Who will it be this month? A new series titled: “Understanding the Recruiting Rankings” will begin and this month, I will explain how Rivals scores their prospects and determines who the best recruiting classes are. In the near future, we will also have a semi-regular column with 2014 recruit Demetrius Knox titled “The Mind of Meech” to give the-Ozone readers an inside look into recruiting.