“This is awesome, I’m going to college here.”
Those were Dwayne Haskins’ words as a fifth grader on May 17, 2008. He was talking about Ohio State.
Taking a tour of the Buckeye football locker room prior to a youth camp, everywhere he turned he was seeing something that he liked.
On a wall with photos of former players, he nestled under his favorite former Buckeye — quarterback Troy Smith.
The foreshadowing is impossible to miss.
Dwayne Haskins may have arrived at Ohio State in the summer of 2016, but he called his shot exactly one decade ago today.
A prediction 10 years in the making.
Out of the mouth of babes.
In hindsight, decked out in a No. 7 Ohio State jersey with “Haskins” stitched on the back, nobody should have been surprised.
And yet it almost never happened.
Haskins was on the Buckeyes’ radar for a while, but the two parties drifted apart when Ohio State accepted a commitment from Texas quarterback Tristen Wallace in April of 2015. Exactly one month later, Haskins verbally committed to his home-state Maryland Terrapins.
His decision came down to Maryland, Florida, and Rutgers.
Any of the three programs would have been thrilled to have him, and all three would be better today had he signed with them.
Eventually, however, circumstances gave way to destiny.
Wallace decided he no longer wanted to play quarterback in college and decommitted from Ohio State in December. The Buckeyes then once again came calling on Haskins.
Call it desperation if you want, but “fate” would be a more poetic answer.
An official visit happened at the end of December. Three weeks later Haskins flipped his commitment from Maryland to Ohio State on January 18, 2016.
Just as he predicted way back in 2008.
Now, heading into his third season as a Buckeye, Dwayne Haskins is set to become Ohio State’s starting quarterback.
His first year at OSU was spent redshirting, but his second season featured last year’s Michigan heroics that will be attached to his name for as long as words still hold meaning.
A decade ago, Troy Smith was his favorite quarterback. Today, he is some fifth-grader’s favorite quarterback.
You could call it full circle, but a circle does not allow Dwayne Haskins a path of his own.
Even as a kid, he was pretty sure he wanted to be a Buckeye. It’s not an uncommon wish, but it is a very uncommon reality.
This September, Haskins will do more than simply be a Buckeye. He is going to be Ohio State’s starting quarterback. This is what he has dreamed about since he was a child.
This is what he worked for.
So Happy Haskiversary to you and yours.
Every single day some kid says he’s going to play football at Ohio State, but it is not every day when he actually makes good on that promise.
And it is even rarer still when it comes so far down the road, as it did for Dwayne Haskins.
What did you want to be when you were a fifth grader? Maybe you said OSU quarterback as well, but how did your prediction turn out?
It’s been a long time coming for everyone, and yet the hope is that Dwayne Haskins has arrived right on time for the Buckeyes.