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Ohio State recruiting: State Secrets, 4/23 - Vrabel, Matta visit top talent

It was another eventful Monday in the world of Ohio State recruiting. Get caught up with all the latest news from the gridiron and the hardwood.

After decommitting from Texas Monday,many see Demetrius Knox (right) as a Buckeye lean now.
After decommitting from Texas Monday,many see Demetrius Knox (right) as a Buckeye lean now.

Not soon after reporting he was 100% Longhorn, 6-4 300 pound offensive lineman Demetrius Knox has decommitted from Texas. Knox, who visited Ohio State last month with high school teammate and current Texas running back commit Daniel Gresham, is reportedly looking at the Buckeyes, UCLA, Miami, and Florida State.


Demetrius who is originally from the Buckeye State (and is already friends with OSU quarterback Braxton Miller) is easily one of the top linemen in the country. But don't take my word for it; according to the 247Sports Composite rankings, Knox checks in as the 77th player in the country, the 4th best guard, and the 12th best talent the state of Texas has to offer. All the major recruiting scouting sites grade him out as a four star prospect.

The Buckeye football coaching staff were all over the map planting the Buckeye flag Monday. At least three of the coaches were out trying to find future All-Americans. Defensive backs coach (and fan favorite) Kerry Coombs was up in the Garden State of New Jersey, offensive coordinator Tom Herman was down in Texas, while defensive line coach Mike Vrabel was checking in with some of the best recruits Illinois has to offer. You may be interested in what the limits are that the coaches have to abide by during these visits. Below are the rules the NCAA has set for them:

An authorized off-campus recruiter may use one evaluation to assess the prospective student-athlete's athletic ability and one evaluation to assess the prospective student athlete's academic qualifications during the evaluation period. If an institution's coaching staff member conducts both an athletics and an academic evaluation of the prospective student-athlete on the same day during this evaluation period, the institution shall be charged with the use of an academics evaluation only and shall be permitted to conduct a second athletics evaluation of the prospective student athlete on a separate day during this evaluation period.

Fresh off a weekend where he visited powerhouses Alabama and LSU, 2014 five star linebacker Clifton Garrett had Mike Vrabel on the campus of his Plainfield South High School. Garrett, who finished with 78 tackles and 3 sacks last season, had recruiting experts thinking he was an OSU lock just a few weeks ago. Now most of those experts have since jumped ship, and now think Clifton could end up in the dirty south playing for any number of SEC teams. Regardless of what the Crystal Ball predictions have to say, it won't keep the Buckeyes from continuing to try to add the 6-2 230 pound beast to the fold.

Another one of the talented Illinois recruits Vrabel stopped to check in on was 2014 offensive lineman JB Butler. The 6-3 280 pound Butler hasn't received an offer from a major college program yet, but is gaining increased interest from most of the schools in the Midwest with the Buckeyes, Michigan, and Northwestern amongst them. I had the pleasure to chat with JB and get the latest on Monday's visit and his OSU recruitment:

Coach Vrabel stopped by, but we weren't allowed to talk at all. We talk on the phone sometimes and he knows how hard I work. They want to see me this summer to further evaluate me. I plan on attending camp there this summer.

From the sound of things coach Vrabel will be sticking around Illinois today and checking in on current Ohio State commit Dylan Thompson. The Montini Catholic defensive end tweeted out the following last night about the aforementioned Vrabel visit:

It was reported Monday afternoon that the Buckeyes offered 2015 in-state athlete Jerome Baker last Friday. Ohio State might have been the first major scholarship offer for the Cleveland Benedictine star who plays running back and linebacker but Florida, Penn State and Louisville soon followed offering the 6-1 190 pound sophomore Monday afternoon. Even though the recruiting process has just started for Baker, the Buckeyes' offer seems to be one that he will never forget. Baker wasn't the only 2015 recruit in the news; '15 RB Jacques Patrick announced he will visit Columbus sometime near June 15, which was confirmed by our Zach Clark. Patrick has a long list of scholarships that includes Ohio State and most of the top schools the south have to offer.

As one recruits process is the the beginning stages, another one's is about to end. 2014 North Carolina tight end Jeb Blazevich will commit today at 4:30 EST on ESPNU. The 6-5 230 pound Blazevich currently has a short list of Ohio State, Alabama, Clemson, Georgia, Notre Dame and Ole Miss. If you asked the national scouts to place a bet on where Jeb will end up, most would put money on Georgia.

In Buckeye basketball recruiting news, Thad Matta was in Indiana Monday to visit with one of the nation's top prospects. Five star shooting guard JaQuan Lyle of Benamin Bosse high in Evansville played host to the Ohio State head coach. At 6-5 and 190 pounds, Lyle has attracted many of the top programs in the nation with most offering scholarships. Ohio State, Florida, Indiana, Illinois and Louisville are just a few of the schools he is considering.

Lyle won't be the only five star guard getting a visit from the Buckeyes this week. Montverde Academy baller D'Angelo Russell had Louisville in on Monday, and is expecting coaches from Ohio State and Georgetown to check in on him Wednesday. The 6-4 180 pound Russell, who is originally from Louisville, Kentucky, can play either guard position has the Buckeyes, Cardinals and Hoyas all trying to fend off the likes of North Carolina, Florida and Missouri: