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Ohio State’s less heralded signings matter just as much as the stars

The Buckeyes have been successful with five-stars and three-stars alike.

NCAA Football: Cotton Bowl-Ohio State vs Southern California Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

“There is a correlation between how teams do and where your team is ranked, recruiting class is ranked. But certainly that’s not the final product because you’ve got to coach and develop them and get them here.”

- Urban Meyer via Austin Ward, Land of 10

Recruiting matters in college football. That may be obvious to some, but there are some out there that don’t believe getting the top five-stars or top talent is a direct correlation to winning and getting championships. That isn’t to say, however, that getting three-stars can’t be just as good, especially if developed well.

Ohio State has plenty of experience with it though. Some recent names such as Darron Lee, Pat Elflein, Malik Hooker, and Michael Thomas, to name a few, were all three-stars that ended up being stars not only for Ohio State, but have had success at the next level as well. Thomas has become one of the NFL’s most dangerous wide receivers, while Hooker was playing very well before an injury ended his season.

So as National Signing Day comes to a close, remember that the rankings do matter, but development is just as important. How that talent is used is crucial, and can be the difference between contending for a national championship and simply not.

“But with TCU losing 13 starters, the Horned Frogs don’t appear to have nearly as much talent returning as Ohio State has in the pipeline this year. In particular, the Horned Frogs could have their hands full moving the football with a new quarterback and an inexperienced offensive line trying to slow down the Silver Bullets.”

- Austin Ward, Land of 10

The start of the college football season is still a long way away, but it’s never too early to start breaking down some of the future opponents the Buckeyes will be facing. And the big nonconference game for Urban Meyer’s squad is going to be against TCU and Gary Patterson. The Horned Frogs had a decent showing in 2017, but lose a lot of starters heading into the new season. Patterson has been a well-respected coach and is known for his impressive defenses, despite being in an offense-driven conference. He’s had a couple of teams that made noise toward a national title run; including with players like Andy Dalton and Trevone Boykin.

But with Kenny Hill gone after this past season, the Horned Frogs will need to find a new quarterback. Ohio State will be in a transition at the signal-caller role as well, with J.T. Barrett graduating. The Buckeyes, however, are a little better suited to make the transition with Dwayne Haskins already proving himself capable on a big stage against Michigan and in relief of Barrett. Should Ohio State choose to go with Tate Martell, then it will be interesting nonetheless to see how those two quarterbacks would fare against a defense of Patterson’s.

“[College basketball power rankings] 16. Ohio State”

- Jeff Borzello, ESPN

Ohio State basketball moved up to the 14th spot in the latest AP Poll, but ESPN’s power rankings have them at 16th overall. Still not a bad spot, all things considered. And of course with the Purdue game looming, it will be interesting to see how Chris Holtmann’s team responds to such a challenge.

The last time the Buckeyes played a ranked team was against top-ranked Michigan State, which Ohio State took care of at home. Wednesday’s game against the Boilermakers isn’t the only task ahead, though. The Buckeyes have to play a tough Iowa team and then head on the road to play Penn State and Michigan.

The Buckeyes beat the Wolverines last time that they played, and took care of business against the Hawkeyes. The Nittany Lions, however, upset Ohio State in Columbus on a buzzer beater and have been hot in recent weeks.

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