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Ohio State recruiting: State Secrets, 12/16 - Latest on Lawrence Cager, Nyheim Hines to announce

Get caught up with the latest in Ohio State recruiting.

Lawrence Cager has dropped the Buckeyes from his list.
Lawrence Cager has dropped the Buckeyes from his list.
Student Sports

Though Ohio State is keeping busy by preparing themselves with facing Alabama in the second game of the inaugural College Football Playoff, the Buckeyes have continued to make sure they keep the pressure on for the top recruits across the country. With a chance to make a splash in front of a national audience, against a team that is considered one of the best every season, head coach Urban Meyer knows this game has large recruiting implications as well.

However, Ohio State offensive coordinator Tom Herman will be coaching his last game(s) as a Buckeye, as he accepted the head coaching position at Houston on Monday. One of Ohio State's top recruits in the class of 2015, Torrance Gibson (who was recruited by Herman), was caught off guard with the news and took to Twitter to let out some of the emotion he felt when he heard the reports of Herman leaving:

And to add to that, the 6'4, 200-pound dual-threat quarterback said he would have done the same thing in Herman's position, and understood the move that he made. With that said, Gibson reaasured Buckeye fans by adding that he still remains a hard commit to the scarlet and gray and is excited about playing with the rest of his classmates in Columbus. Gibson is rated as a four-star under the 247Sports Composite and is ranked as the fifth-best athlete in the country, in addition to being ranked as the 11th-best prospect at any position from the state of Florida.

Bucks miss out on Cager's list:

Not everyone was quite so optimistic about Tom Herman leaving Ohio State, however. '15 wide receiver Lawrence Cager released his top five late Monday night, in a list that the Buckeyes were shockingly left off of. In order, Georgia, Miami, Alabama, Virginia Tech, and Ole Miss made the cut for the prospect's final five. Cager is a 6'5, 202-pound wide receiver and many have considered him an Ohio State lean for quite some time. As of Monday, Cager's 247Sports Crystal Ball predictions had him heading to Columbus with nearly 70 percent of the vote, but with the latest release of his top schools, you won't be seeing that for much longer.

The three-star prospect is ranked as the 41st wide receiver in the country and seventh-best prospect at any position from the state of Maryland. The reasoning, according to Cager himself, was because of coach Herman leaving Ohio State for Houston. While the Buckeyes aren't completely out of the running just yet, Cager mentioned that Herman leaving was big - and not in a good way. Torrance Gibson was another reason Cager had been a Buckeye lean to this point, and while Gibson still remains committed and says he will be, Cager is moving on to try and find another school to his liking.

'15 ATH Hines to announce Friday:

'15 athlete and all-purpose back Nyheim Hines will be making his college decision this Friday at 3 p.m. Hines will be making his selection between N.C. State, Duke, Wake Forest, Virginia Tech, West Virginia, Florida and Ohio State, with 72 percent of the 247Sports Crystal Ball predictions in for the Wolfpack. The 5'9, 187-pound recruit is ranked as the nation's second-best all-purpose back and is a four-star under the 247Sports Composite.

Hines is one of the fastest players in the country as well, with a 40-yard dash time of 4.34. While the home state Wolfpack remain the favorite, Virginia Tech could sneak in with the recent official visit this past weekend. Despite Ohio State having some interest, I'd be a bit surprised if he chose the Buckeyes, but have little doubt the coaching staff would take such a naturally gifted athlete.