Josh Proctor is a 4-star safety from Owasso, Oklahoma. He was ranked the No.7 safety and the No. 71 player overall in the 2018 recruiting class according to the 247Sports Composite.
He doesn’t enroll until this summer, but he still has a good shot at landing a spot in the Ohio State two-deep this season.
Proctor (6-2 190) possesses ideal size and athleticism and is almost a mirror image of current Buckeye safeties Jordan Fuller and Isaiah Pryor.
The clips below come from his sophomore, junior, and senior seasons, and each of them displays the playmaking ability that brought him to Ohio State.
What To Like
Proctor is a long athlete who can cover ground in both the passing game and in run support. He is also a very talented offensive player, playing quarterback, running back, receiver, and anything else his Owasso team needed.
That offensive mindset is often utilized when he intercepts the ball.
Take this 103-yard interception return last season, for instance.
Proctor finds the ball in deep coverage or in underneath coverage, and when he ends up with the ball, he is always looking to do something with it.
Let’s not compare him to Malik Hooker just yet, but there is reason to think he will find the end zone a time or three as a Buckeye. For instance, this play is Proctor on offense, but if you squint while watching it, it could look like a pick six.
Proctor is also a big hitter and a physical defender. Sometimes he fails to wrap up on the big hits, as most young players do, but he is more than willing to lend run support for his defense.
For the most part, however, Proctor appears to be a sound tackler at any speed. He zips toward the line of scrimmage and doesn’t get tripped up by a move or two from the ball carrier. He can change directions and match the ball carrier as well.
Josh Proctor is one of the most athletic incoming freshmen in 2018 and he has already tapped much of his potential. He is a productive player and checks a lot of boxes on the prototype checklist.
Coming from Oklahoma, there may be some questions about the level of competition he played against. Ohio State, Georgia, Florida, Michigan, Oklahoma, and Texas had no such questions when they all offered Proctor a scholarship.
With ideal size and length, Proctor fits what the Buckeyes want in a deep safety.
Urban Meyer, Greg Schiano, and Alex Grinch have all mentioned Josh Proctor as a guy to watch this fall. With the boundary safety spot still not settled between Isaiah Pryor, Jahsen Wint, and Brendon White, you could see Proctor get heavily involved there once fall camp gets underway.
Recent safeties Vonn Bell, Jordan Fuller, and Isaiah Pryor were all in the two-deep as true freshmen. There is probably a part of Meyer, Schiano, and Grinch that expects Proctor to do the same. If he doesn’t, however, that’s not necessarily a bad sign. Malik Hooker didn’t even see the field as a true freshman, after all.
Expect Proctor to be involved in special teams at the very least this fall.
The Bottom Line
Josh Proctor comes to Ohio State with the same level of expectations as Vonn Bell and Jordan Fuller, but he may actually bring more playmaking with him.
With his experience on offense, his ability to turn every turnover into something even bigger is a very special skill.
The Ohio State coaches aren’t expecting Proctor to redshirt. They are actually expecting him to come in and compete for a starting spot. While that is unlikely to happen, it gives you an idea of what the coaches think of him.
Proctor is perfectly suited for the boundary safety spot in Ohio State’s defense, but so is sophomore Isaiah Pryor.
It won’t be impossible for Proctor to catch up and pass the other boundary contenders, but it is unlikely. He could certainly do enough to win a spot in the two-deep, however.