National Signing Day 2013 has come and gone, but athletes in the '13 class that have not yet decided where to go still remain. '13 WR Luke Vadas is one of those recruits, after turning down his only scholarship offer from Marshall. That may seem like a silly thing to do, but Vadas might have other ideas when it comes to him finding a team in college football.
Under coach Meyer and his staff, Buckeye fans have become accustomed to using new terms like noncommitable offers, but a fairly new one is the "preferred walk-on". Vadas fits the mold of a division one college football player, standing 6'2", 185-pounds and runs a 4.46 40-yard dash. That kind of speed is uncommon, even among some of the best college football players, and it goes to show why coach Meyer has taken an interest in Vadas.
In his senior season, Vadas had 79 receptions for 1,045 yards and nine touchdowns. Luke also contributed to the rushing attack, carrying the ball six times for 112 yards. Vadas truly might be one of those diamond in the rough prospects, as he's no slouch on the football field. Along with the offer from Marshall, Vadas is also considering Ohio State, Maryland, Penn State and Pitt.
We had the chance to talk with Luke about his season and what he had to say about growing up a Buckeye fan:
You recently sat down with the Ohio State coaching staff. What did they talk about with you?
I really enjoyed getting to talk with Coach Vrabel when he came. We talked about what the whole "preferred walk on" process would be like and all the work that goes into being an Ohio State Buckeye. We also talked about the school there from an academic standpoint. Coach made a point of talking about the quality education that Ohio State provides, also saying that earning my major there (Business Administration) would also carry weight and allow me to have a successful life after football as well.
What are your thoughts on Ohio State in general?
I've always thought highly of Ohio State. Growing up in Ohio, I was always surrounded by Scarlet and Gray. I really like what the program stands for as a whole and the fantastic fan base that is passionate about OSU not only in Ohio, but throughout the country. I have grandparents who are graduates along with aunts and uncles, so its safe to say that growing up, I watched a lot of Ohio State football.
Have you spoken to fellow recruits about Ohio State?
Although I played against a few of them this past season, I never got the chance to talk with them. I'm playing in the North-South all star game and I know that there are a few recruits on both teams, so I know I'll have a chance to talk with them as the game approaches.
Now that National Signing Day 2013 has passed, what are your plans?
I didn't plan on committing anywhere on NSD, so that wasn't really a big deal. I have yet to visit Ohio State and would like to get on campus and talk more with the coaches before I make my decision. In terms of making my actual decision, I have no real timeline for when I want to commit. I just want to go somewhere that I feel most comfortable and can help the team win games.
How did your season go from a personal standpoint? Did you meet any of your goals that you might have made?
Personally I had a very good season. Before the season started, I set my goals at being a 1,000-yard receiver, leading the area in receptions, make all-state, and to finally play in the North South game. I finished the season accomplishing my goals as I had 79 receptions for 1045 yards and 9 touchdowns, which earned me all-state and a North-South game invite. I'm thankful for all the opportunities I got this year, and despite our team not having as much success as we have had in the past, I still enjoyed the season altogether.
Do you currently have any favorites right now?
Right now, I'm torn pretty evenly between Maryland, Ohio State, Pitt and Penn State. All of them are great schools with great coaches, so I'm planning to talk with my parents and pray about it to help me make the right decision.
What are the biggest factors when making your decision?
For me, the most important thing, is being around a coach and a program that is intelligent and someone who I can relate to. At the end of the day however, the other main component for me is being somewhere that I will have a chance to play, and help my team win football games on a big stage.
Which player (NFL or NCAA) do you look up to, or model yourself as?
Two players that I relate myself to would be Hines Ward and Anquan Boldin. Both of these players were and still are great receivers. What separates them however, and makes them stand out to me, is that they aren't the biggest or fastest guys on the field, but they still find a way to get open, run great routes, catch the ball, and be great blockers. Those two players are the two that I try to model my game after the most.
What are your biggest strengths as a wide receiver?
My biggest strengths are my route-running ability and my hands. Since I was little I have always been around college level competition through camps and combines. The way I always tried to separate myself was through running great crisp routes. I was fortunate to have Andre Rison coach me and teach me at FBU Top Gun because I really learned a lot from an NFL great like himself. When it's all said and done however, you have to be able to catch the ball to play receiver, and really make something happen once you get your hands on it. This is the part of my game that I'm very thankful for, because I've always had good hands, and only want to work to improve them, to make them even better.
Is there anything you can improve on?
There is always room to improve. Before college and into college I want to add weight and get stronger. I also want to improve my speed so I can separate and help the passing game as a vertical threat .
Anything else we should know about you?
There was a mistake/mix-up with the visit on February 7th. The original thought was that the "blackout" period for recruits was over that day, but when it was looked into again by someone at the school, the 7th was still a blackout date for recruits. I plan on visiting in the next couple of weeks to get down and see the school and coaches.
Check out Luke's highlight film of his senior season to see what he might bring to Columbus: