Buckeyes Extend Offer to 2016 Pennsylvania Quarterback
By Tony Gerdeman
COLUMBUS, Ohio — Just because Urban Meyer is still working on finding a 2015 quarterback or two doesn't mean he isn't also on the hunt for a quarterback in the 2016 class.
On Thursday, the Buckeyes extended a scholarship offer to Brandon McIlwain (6-1 205), a 2016 dual-threat QB out of Newtown, Pennsylvania. Ohio State joined Penn State, South Carolina, Boston College, UCLA and Temple as FBS schools who have offered McIlwain.
McIlwain received an offer from Penn State head coach James Franklin last weekend when he attended PSU's junior day. As you would expect for a Pennsylvania prospect, that was not his first trip to Penn State, but it was apparently a memorable one.
"It was amazing," McIlwain told the Harrisburg Patriot-News.
"The facilities and everything they have there, it's just beautiful. What the staff was saying about where they think Penn State can go and what they want to do and stuff was really cool too."
McIlwain has been a starter on the Council Rock North varsity team since he was a freshman, which was just a little over one year ago. He threw for 1,446 yards and 11 touchdowns with nine interceptions this past season as a sophomore, and rushed for 594 yards and 10 touchdowns.
As a freshman, he ran for 715 yards and 11 touchdowns and threw for 1,370 yards and nine touchdowns while throwing 15 interceptions and completing 49.3% of his passes. It was good enough to be named first-team All-Suburban One League National Conference as a ninth grader.
McIlwain isn't just a football prospect, however, as he is also a second baseman/pitching prospect on Major League Baseball draft lists. Being a professional pitching prospect should give you some kind of idea of his arm strength. The fact that he excels at both football and baseball should also give you a pretty good idea of the type of athlete he is.
After all, not many prospects have a five-minute YouTube of highlights as a seventh-grader.
McIlwain is not yet ranked by any of the services, but the 2016 rankings are in the very early stages right now. Given his offer list at this early point, he's likely a four-star prospect when the rankings start coming down.
Being just one state away, he will no doubt be taking a visit to Ohio State when he gets a chance.
The offer to McIlwain is the second offer the Buckeyes have extended to a 2016 quarterback. The other offer belongs to Xavier Gaines (6-2 200), out of Frostproof, Florida.
Gaines is an early four-star prospect per Scout. He has offers from Ohio State, Florida State, Florida, Auburn, Baylor, Miami and others. He is reportedly a Florida State lean at this point. The Buckeyes offered him back in March of last year after an outstanding performance at a Nike training camp.
Obviously, the number of quarterback offers for the 2016 class will grow, but right now there is still work to do in the 2015 class.
Fortunately for the Buckeyes, they already have their 2017 quarterback in Massillon's Danny Clark (6-4 205), who threw for 1,644 yards and 17 touchdowns with just seven interceptions last season as a true freshman. He completed 104-179 (58.1%) of his passes while starting 10 of the Tigers' 12 games.
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