After hosting two five-star recruits last week, Ohio State will be looking to continue that momentum with a visit from the top-rated DE of the 2018 recruiting class. Xavier Thomas is making waves in the college football world and he is only a sophomore in high school. Reigning from Florence, SC, Thomas is already a popular name among many of the country's elite college football programs. Standing at 6'3, 242 pounds, Thomas already holds offers from the likes of Alabama, Clemson, Florida State, Georgia, South Carolina, LSU, Notre Dame and Ohio State. The list goes on.
Thomas has been busy this year, as he has already visited both Alabama and Clemson with a visit to South Carolina in the works for next month. But the big news is he will be in Columbus with Urban Meyer and the Ohio State football team today.
The hype surrounding Thomas is backed by incredible play. He has the size and strength to literally throw opposing players down to the ground. As if that wasn't enough, Thomas can also run through people. In fact, Thomas is so good at running through players, he lines up on offense periodically as a QB out of the wildcat formation. Yes, you read that correctly, a DE with the athleticism to line up at QB.
Thomas will be a force at whatever program he chooses to join. The Buckeyes haven't had much of an opportunity to make an impression on Thomas yet, but a visit to the Ohio State campus will give them the best chance they have had to date.
He seemed to be excited for the visit, counting down the hours on the car ride to the Buckeye state. His recruitment will be one for Buckeye Nation to follow for the coming years, as Meyer and co. could get another solid addition to the D-line.
Exactly 3 hours away from #BuckeyeNation ⭕️ https://t.co/9fCOnYDeNA— Xavier Thomas (@atxlete) March 28, 2016
Buckeye hoops targeting graduate transfer
With the closing of Ohio State's most disappointing basketball season in recent memory, many around Buckeye Nation began looking towards next year before March even began. Such is the case following any rebuilding season and expectations should be raised for next season.
With news of Buckeye big man Daniel Giddens requesting a dismissal from the team in order to transfer and the possibility of fellow big man Trevor Thompson pulling off the upset of the year and declaring for the NBA Draft, there is suddenly room on the Buckeyes' roster.
Transfers have become common in the past few years for Thad Matta and the Buckeye coaching staff. Thompson was a transfer from Virginia Tech while former Buckeye center Anthony Lee transferred into the program after initially attending Temple. Keeping with the trend, it seems like Matta has caught the attention of another transfer possibility.
Cullen Neal's story is strange. Originally playing for the New Mexico Lobos, Neal was coached by his father, Craig Neal. The 6'5, 190-pound SG averaged 12.3 points, 3.7 assists and 2.8 rebounds in just over 30 minutes per contest, while playing under his father. These numbers suggest he could provide the Buckeyes with a bit more juice, as he would have qualified as the Buckeyes' second-best scorer last season, behind Marc Loving.
The Buckeyes already have Derek Funderburk and Micah Potter joining the team next year, with a scholarship recently being offered to Westerville South senior Andre Wesson. Neal could be the last piece to fall for this team.
It will be interesting to see how the relationship between the two grows over the coming months, as he has also expressed interest in Ole Miss and Tennessee. Ohio State needs to improve on last season, and if Matta thinks Neal could increase the Buckeyes' skill level, we very well might see him play in Columbus, as he has two years of eligibility left and can begin playing immediately.