Football Recruiting

Recruiting at Ohio State ‘Rare Opportunity’ for Alex Grinch

Alex Grinch Ohio State Football Buckeyes


For college coaches, the emblem that they wear on their polo shirt or pullover while on recruiting trips can act as a skeleton key.

Logos can open doors with barely a knock and how-do-you-do.

When the Ohio State football coaches go into high schools or homes, their mere presence is an event. Doors swing open, hands are extended, and conversations begin with nary an icebreaker.

That’s how it is for most of the top programs in the nation, but that’s not how it is everywhere.

For Ohio State co-defensive coordinator Alex Grinch, it’s certainly been a new experience for him. The goals while out recruiting, however, have never changed.

“I think the initial conversation is certainly different,” he said. “The initial phone call and getting guys to call you is a little bit easier than in some of my past stops. But in the end, it’s about making sure you’re getting the right student-athlete to bring into the program.

“There’s more to it than just that initial reaction, but there is a brand attached to Ohio State, and that’s putting it mildly. It’s a rare opportunity to have that brand on your Nike pullover or your polo, so you better take advantage of it. But you also know it’s an awesome responsibility that comes with that too.”

Grinch spent time coaching at New Hampshire, Wyoming, Missouri, and Washington State, and in total at those four stops he was the primary recruiter for just one 4-star signee. Recruiting rankings are far from perfect, but it does give you an idea of the differences between his previous stops and his current location.

Sweet Home Ohio

Grinch is an energetic coach and recruiter who believes in the places and systems that he sells. As an Ohio native and lifelong Buckeye fan, what he is selling now is everything he has ever believed in.

And even though Urban Meyer likes to hire coaches with Ohio ties, Grinch doesn’t think his background will be the draw that brings players in.

“I think my excitement about the university or my knowing of Columbus or this state, does that translate to a recruit, it’s tough to gauge that,” he said. “I think in a lot of ways the University from a sales standpoint, you kind of present what’s there, and it’s a pretty good product. And from a football standpoint, it’s a pretty good product.”

Being from Ohio, Grinch has a decades-long connection to the school that he is selling. He can paint it in many different lights because he’s seen it from so many different angles. In his opinion, it’s the picture he paints that is selling, not the name etched down in the corner of the painting.

“In terms of my background or being from there, I don’t know that it’s a distinct advantage that way,” he said. “This place has done very, very well without me. So anything I can do to add to that certainly is my motivation. It’s exciting to be here, but from a recruiting standpoint, that won’t be what guys circle when they sign on at Ohio State.”


One Response

  1. What he did at Wazzu won’t have a lot of bearing on what he does here, but it will have some. He was a key in turning the Wazzu defense into a presentable group of guys who could actually give teams fits. At Ohio State he has a whole tool shed filled with guys who would have been starters at every school he’s been, with maybe 1 or 2 of those previous players he coached being able to crack into the 2 deep. He’s got a “probable” All American in Jordan Fuller as a starter, and another terrific player in Isaiah Pryor probably starting next to him. So he doesn’t have any excuses for any let down. Especially when we start talking about depth.

    I really anticipate and probably expect a fantastic secondary in 2018, and Alex will be part of the reason for its success.

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