BOOMS don’t get much bigger than this.
In a major Early Signing Day coup, Ohio State football just scored one of its biggest recruiting wins in more than a decade.
Zach Harrison, a 5-star defensive end from Olentangy Orange High School in suburban Columbus, just committed to the Buckeyes.
It’s a huge head-to-head recruiting win for new head coach Ryan Day over Michigan’s Jim Harbaugh.
Harrison rates as the No. 4 overall player in the 247 Composite. He’s the highest-rated prospect from Ohio since Ted Ginn in 2004.
Harrison was long considered close to a lock to end up a Buckeye, but things changed dramatically earlier this year.
After Urban Meyer was placed on administrative leave this summer, momentum swung toward Michigan. By late fall, the Wolverines were considered heavy favorites to land Harrison.
But the Buckeyes’ 62-39 demolition of Michigan in the regular season finale did more than decide the Big Ten East. It may have also led Harrison back to OSU.
In the 5-star prospect, Ohio State is getting a player with nearly limitless potential. Harrison possesses an almost unprecedented combination of size and speed.
He’s 6-foot-5 and 225 lbs, but ran a 10.82 in the 100-meter dash at a track meet in April. That is less than half a second slower than the all-time Ohio High School record, set by former Buckeye running back Brandon Saine (10.38) in 2006.
Harrison will likely have an opportunity to step into the defensive end rotation for the Buckeyes immediately.
With Nick Bosa gone, and rotation players Jonathon Cooper and Jashon Cornell heading into their final seasons, there is a chance for immediate playing time.
Urban Meyer was able to replace 5-star defensive end Joey Bosa with his 5-star brother Nick after the 2015 season. Now, Harrison provides Day and the Buckeyes with an absolutely freakish athlete at the position for at least three more seasons.
Harrison has dominated his competition not only on the high school field, but also at all-star competitions like The Opening.
His highlight reel (embedded below) shows exactly why he’s considered one of the best players in the nation. Harrison is big and strong enough to overpower smaller blockers, and fast enough to zip past bigger opponents to bring down the quarterback.
He also showcases his athleticism on offense, including on plays where he splits out wide and beats a defensive back downfield for a long touchdown reception. He also shows great hands, reeling in a one-handed catch as an inline tight end.
You can watch his junior season highlights below.