Saturday's matchup against Virginia Tech might not have ended the way Buckeye Nation was hoping, but it could still be a victory in the long run. Urban Meyer and OSU coaching staff didn't just host the Hokies on Saturday, but also quite a few of the nation's top recruiting targets.
Elite class of 2015 prospects five-star defensive end Josh Sweat, running backs Damien Harris, Jacques Patrick, Jordan Scarlett (Miami commit), offensive lineman Matthew Burrell, defensive backs Jordan Whitehead, Kevin Toliver (LSU commit), and Mykelti Williams were all hand to visit the campus and check out the Buckeyes in person.
Another senior that was on campus Saturday was Massillon Washington running back and linebacker JD Crabtree.
A teammate of 2017 OSU quarterback commit Danny Clark, Crabtree had a heck of a time while in Columbus with Clark:
"The intensity is always umatched when your inside the 'Shoe. The things that stood out would have to be the fan base. Driving around that place you know the tradition and how sacred it truly is to the whole state of Ohio. I had fun of course; it's The Ohio State University."
The 5'10, 220 pound Crabtree is off to an outstanding start to his senior year. So far this young season, he has rushed for 371 yards. Last Thursday, Crabtree finished with 174 yards to lead the Tigers to a 17-14 come-from-behind win over Canton Glen Oak. Trailing in the fourth quarter, JD gave Massillon the lead with this incredible run for a score:
The 2015 names on the recruit list might have been impressive, but the classes of 2016, and 2017 were well represented, too. Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas' defensive end Nick Bosa, the younger brother of Buckeye standout Joey Bosa, recent linebacker offer Carter Coughlin of Eden Prairie, MN was in town, as were juniors Brendan Ferns of Saint Clairsville and Gahanna Lincoln's Jonathan Cooper.
Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary defensive back Tyrece Speaight, Reynoldsburg defensive end/linebacker Mark Gooden, Akron Hoban prospects Jonah Morris, a wide receiver, as well as 2017 running back Todd Sibley were some of the other top in-state talent roaming the sidelines of the OSU game.
Land-Grant Holy Land caught up with those four prospects and had them break down their time for us:
"The game was fun. It was an exciting second half. Too bad we lost. The atmosphere was great. The fans of Buckeye Nation are amazing. I can't wait to go back."
"The visit was great. I saw LeBron James on the sidelines. I really enjoyed the crowd, and atmosphere at the 'Shoe. Bosa had a great defensive play as well. It was a great first visit to an Ohio State game, even without the victory. The atmosphere was electric. The crowd was loud and proud all night. 107,000 fans, too. It was great."
"The visit was pretty good. Even though the game didn't go as expected, I liked how the crowd never gave up in their team, and I was happy to meet new people, and some celebrities. I really liked the atmosphere out there, and I pretty much felt very welcomed and wanted there."
"The visit was pretty awesome. I got to see LeBron and meet Braxton Miller and Norris Cole. I got to see two players that I used to play against in OSU uniforms, so it was really good. The game and atmosphere were off the charts. I couldn't even hear myself think when OSU made a big play. The crowd went insane. Overall, it was a good visit."
Keep checking back,as Land-Grant Holy Land will have even more visit recaps and reactions throughout the week.
Thad Matta, Jeff Boals and the OSU basketball staff were also busy with recruits. Future Buckeyes AJ Harris, Austin Grandstaff, one time verbal commitment Mickey Mitchell, and 2016 shooting guard Curtis Jones were also on campus.
Another hoopster that visited Saturday was 2018 shooting guard Dane Goodwin of Upper Arlington.
Our Zach Fleer had the following to say about the freshman Golden Bear, who is already gaining attention from OSU, Dayton, Notre Dame, and Wisconsin:
"Watching Goodwin, it is really hard to believe that he has yet to play a single minute of high school ball. A skilled and intelligent son of a coach, Goodwin's father is the head coach at Division III Capital, the 6'4 freshman is a sharp-shooting guard that knows how to play the game. Smart with the ball, Goodwin makes the correct passes, and moves really well off the ball to position himself for good shots. A decent athlete with quality foot speed, Goodwin is also a superb defender with quality discipline. Talking to Upper Arlington Coach Tim Casey late last week, Casey said multiple times that Goodwin is advanced for his age, and doesn't play like the typical freshman. Looking as if Goodwin will start from day one of his high school career, Upper Arlington will benefit from it's prized freshman, as a solid senior class should provide him with the type of role models and teammates that enhance a players development."
- Many of the current 2015 Ohio State commits stood out underneath the lights on Friday and Saturday. Just like last week, we are giving you a chance to vote for the Elite '15 MVP of the week. Your nominees this week are Joe Burrow, Nick Conner, Denzel Ward, Eric Glover-Williams, and Kevin Feder. Let your voice be heard.
- Last night four-star class of 2015 safety Rashad Roundtree tweeted that he will commit soon. The 6'1 195 pound Roundtree is considering scholarship offers from Georgia, OSU, Duke, Auburn, and Michigan State. Look for Rashad to stay in Georgia and suit up for the Bulldogs, however.