Halloween night brought us the tricks and treats. (*cues sitcom laugh track).
After taking down the then-No. 2 ranked Penn State Nittany Lions, the Ohio State Buckeyes were slotted into the No. 6 spot in the first edition of this season’s College Football Playoff rankings. Georgia, Alabama, Clemson and Notre Dame were the top four teams, respectively, and Oklahoma slipped into the No. 5 spot.
I guess you could call that a trick, as the Buckeyes seemed to be the team with the hot-hand at this point in this season—and opened up their playoff pursuit on the outside looking in.
While Saturdays are the days when Urban Meyer proves what his team can do, the recruiting trail perpetually moves on. Even on Halloween night, news broke.
The Wait Is Nearly Over
A little after the unveiling of the initial CFP rankings, a notable five-star recruit took to Twitter to announce his commitment date.
My commitment is December 20th all glory to god— BLESSEDMVP (@Micah_parsons23) October 31, 2017
Weak-side defensive end Micah Parsons (Harrisburg, PA/Harrisburg) was the one to give us the treat we’ve been waiting for: his commitment date. The Buckeyes were seen as the frontrunner for the Keystone State standout, but things started to fizzle within the past couple months. Parsons attended the Friday Night Lights camp back in July, and even made an official visit to OSU in September; however, after the OU loss, things took a turn as he tweeted support for Dwayne Haskins over J.T. Barrett.
Since the college football season started, the 6'3, 235-pounder has made unofficial visits to Penn State and Nebraska. The latest of the those trips, which happened this past Saturday, was to Norman, OK to visit with the Sooners.
It’s been a wild ride in the Parsons recruitment process. In February 2016, he committed to the Nittany Lions football program. That commitment lasted over a year, before he decommitted a week after making a trip to Columbus in April 2017.
Either way, whoever Parsons commits to on Dec. 20 will be getting one of the best DEs in the 2018 class. According to the 247sports composite, he’s the No. 5 overall prospect in the class, and the best WDE and PA prospect. From a prediction standpoint, the 247sports Crystal Ball has 87 percent (20 of 23 votes) casted for Penn State being the program Parsons commits to.
We can speculate all we want, but we’ll get the verdict in mid-December.
An offer to another WDE
While Parsons is one of the focuses for the Buckeye coaching staff, they can’t limit their options.
Before the Pennsylvania star prospect tweeted about his commitment date, another star on the high school football circuit went to Twitter to talk about some big news.
Truly Honored To Receive An Offer From Ohio State #GoBucks ⚪️ pic.twitter.com/eWMf47R4qC— Abdul-Malik McClain (@malikmcclain8_) October 31, 2017
Four-star WDE Abdul-Malik McClain (San Juan Capistrano, CA/J Serra Catholic) made his tweet about the OSU offer late Monday night. McClain currently stands as a top 300 player in the country, coming in at No. 270 on the 247sports composite. At his position, he’s the 15th-best in the 2018 class—and 34th-best in the state of California.
If the Buckeyes do end up getting McClain, they’ll need to do some serious work. Back in July, the California native elected to stay in the state for college football by committing to the UCLA Bruins. While not all commitments are set in stone, it’s hard to uproot someone from across the country.
Ohio State joined 14 others schools in offering McClain, a list that includes Oklahoma, USC, Notre Dame and Washington.