We're only a few weeks into the 2015 recruiting cycle, but there's still a lot of news regarding the top soon-to-be senior prep prospects in the nation when it comes to Ohio State.
Top RB Andre Robinson set to visit
The Buckeyes have known they'd be hosting a big visitor on March 21st in Avon (CT) Old Farms tight end Chris Clark. Yesterday they received news they'd be hosting another big visitor just a day later in the form of Harrisburg (PA) Bishop McDevitt running back Andre Robinson.
"Yes, March 22nd I'll be visiting," Robinson said. "I'm looking forward to spending time with coach (Stan) Drayton and watching them practice."
The 5'9, 205-pound tailback has been in close contact with Ohio State defensive line coach Larry Johnson (his area recruiter) since being offered and even had a nice phone conversation with head coach Urban Meyer last week.
"I talk to coach (Larry) Johnson weekly and I talked to coach Meyer last week," he continued. "It (the conversation with Meyer) went well. He seems like a good guy. I'm looking forward to getting out there to meet him."
In addition to the March 22nd visit to Ohio State, Robinson will make two unofficial visits to Penn State on Monday and also on March 21st, the day before he makes the trip to Columbus. He's looking forward to meeting the new staff when he visits Happy Valley.
"They (the new Penn State staff) seem pretty cool," Robinson told Land-Grant Holy Land. "I'm looking forward to getting up there and getting to know them."
Robinson is also going to visit Virginia Tech at some point this spring. He's also considering visits to Michigan and Michigan State.
Slade set to see Ohio State
On Nation Signing Day, Montclair (NJ) defensive end Darius Slade flipped from Michigan State to Ohio State, despite never having set foot on Ohio State's campus. That's all going to change this weekend though, as the 6'5, 240-pound defensive lineman will make his official visit to Columbus.
"This weekend," Slade said of his official visit to Ohio State. "I'm leaving tomorrow morning."
Slade is excited to meet his future coaches and teammates during his trip to Columbus over the weekend as he has never really talked to them in person.
"(I'm looking forward to) hanging out with my future teammates, the defensive line, and the coaches," Slade told Land-Grant Holy Land. "(Also) tour the facilities and enjoy myself."
I'll have more on Slade's official visit to Ohio State once he returns home on Sunday. Slade has a lot of potential if he has the right coaching, which he does in newly minted defensive line coach Larry Johnson.
Gaines has the Bucks on top, Oregon lurking
A couple of weeks ago, we spoke to 2015 Frostproof (FL) wide receiver Kaleel Gaines, who said Ohio State is one of the coaching staffs he was the closest to. In the time since we first talked and now, the Buckeyes have vaulted into the lead for the standout wide receiver. However, a scholarship offer from Oregon could shake up his recruitment in a big way.
"For right now (Ohio State) is in the lead, but if Oregon offers me things will change," the rising wide receiver told Land-Grant Holy Land.
Gaines likes how he would fit in the Ohio State offense, but also indicated that he might fit in Oregon's fast paced offense a little bit better.
"I just think Ohio State is a great place for me and I think I can fit in their system," Gaines said. "If Oregon did offer me, yes they would pass Ohio State."
His younger brother, Xavier Gaines, who is a top 2016 quarterback recruit also has an offer from the Buckeyes, but as things currently stand, the two are unlikely to end up at the same school.
This will be an interesting recruitment to follow and Land-Grant Holy Land will keep you updated on the status of the star receiver from the Sunshine state.
'15 speedster high on OSU, will visit this spring
Urban Meyer and his staff are always looking to add speed to their football program, so it should be no surprise that Garner (NC) athlete Nyheim Hines, who reportedly runs a 4.34 40-yard dash, is high on their recruiting board.
"I talk to them (Ohio State) weekly," the speedy Hines told Land-Grant Holy Land. "(I'm going to visit) sometime in the spring."
The 5'9, 180-pound speedster has mainly been in contact with the trio of Mark Pantoni, Chris Ash, and Stan Drayton. He has built pretty good relationships with all of them.
"I usually talk to (Mark) Pantoni, coach (Chris) Ash, and coach (Stan) Drayton," Hines said. "We just talk about life and just about anything."
Hines visited North Carolina last night and will be at Duke this weekend to watch the Blue Devils take on Syracuse in basketball.
Buckeyes offer 2016 Quarterback
Ohio State handed out a rare offer for the 2016 recruiting class yesterday when the staff extended an offer to Newtown (PA) Council Rock North quarterback Brandon Mcllwain.
The 6'1, 205-pound quarterback also has early offers from the likes of Boston College, Penn State, South Carolina, and Temple.
It's pretty unclear which way the standout quarterback in leaning right now, as it's still very early in the recruiting process for him, but it's good the Buckeyes are in on him early as he could end up being one of the top quarterbacks the 2016 class has to offer.
Other recruiting updates
- Ohio State has been in contact with 2015 athlete Deon Cain since offering him a few weeks ago and he would like to visit.
Cain could play either quarterback at wide receiver at the college level. At Ohio State he could be a receiver or could be a backup option in the event they're unable to land Torrance Gibson.
- Speaking of Gibson, I posted an interview with him yesterday and he's very excited to make his first trip to Ohio State at some point this summer.
"Ohio State has a great tradition. All of the great players they've had play there," he continued. "It's just a great school in general. Ohio is beautiful, and I can't wait to take my visit. Ohio State also has had a great football team for the past couple of years, great quarterbacks have gone through there, great coaches, and the school is just great."
I think the Buckeyes are in a very good position to land the top dual-threat quarterback, but there's still a long way to go in his recruitment.
- I had a brief conversation with John Bosa, the father of 2016 Fort Lauderdale (FL) St. Thomas Aquinas defensive end Nick Bosa and current Buckeye defensive end Joey Bosa.
He said recruiting has been pretty wild for Nick of late as he has picked up offers from Alabama, Notre Dame, Florida State, and Florida. The super sophomore has also been training every day and currently stands at 6'3 1/2 and weighs 255 pounds.
He was on Ohio State's campus last weekend, but it wasn't really a recruiting visit, it was just an opportunity for him to spend time with his older brother.
Most impressively Bosa posted a 4.1 GPA on his latest report card.
- 2015 tight end Chris Clark told me he doesn't have a leader right now, despite rumors Georgia had surged into the lead for him following his trip to Athens.
Ohio State was his first leader, but he backed off of that statement shortly after he made it.
- One of the players who impressed me the Monday's Best of the Midwest combine was Gahanna (OH) Lincoln linebacker Jonathon Cooper. When I spoke to him following the event, he said an offer from Ohio State could end his recruitment.
"I think they would definitely shoot up (on his list) and I would probably commit to Ohio State if they offered me," Cooper admitted.
I think Cooper will eventually land the Ohio State offer he covets and could become one of the first members of the class depending on when he receives the offer.
- Finally our own Charles Doss caught up with 2015 offensive lineman Grant Newsome yesterday. The standout lineman was excited to receive an offer from the Buckeyes.
"It's a great feeling to be offered by such a prestigious program such as Ohio State." Newsome, who currently holds a long list of offers that includes Michigan, North Carolina, Penn State, Rutgers, Northwestern, Duke and Virginia told Land-Grant Holy Land of his chance to play for the Buckeyes. "Their football program has a history of winning, and that is something I'm sure is just going to continue on under Coach Meyer." He added.
Newsome is one of many offense linemen in the 2015 class the Buckeyes have handed out an early offer to. It will be interesting to see where his recruitment goes from here.
- February 21st visitor(s): DE Darius Slade (2014 signee)
- March 20th visitor(s): LB Josh Barajas
- March 21st visitor(s): TE Chris Clark
- March 22nd visitor(s): RB Andre Robinson
If you have any Ohio State recruiting questions, leave them in the comments and we will answer them as quickly as possible.