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Will tomorrow bring Ohio State’s next 2019 pledge?

The Buckeyes are hoping the spring game stirs the commitment pot.

Jordan Battle
247sports

It’s been quite the week for the Ohio State Buckeyes football program. Shoot, this week has even been huge for Ohio State’s basketball team as well—landing a top target, in-state five-star.

But back to football. With spring practice still at full go, there has been little down time. Not to mention, there’s been some pretty sweet ceremonies taking place at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center as 2017 Big Ten Championship rings have been delivered and yesterday’s special occasion of gold pants being dropped off to players as well. A perfect lead up to the annual spring game tomorrow, Ohio State is looking to not only impress the fans with their play and accolades, but the many recruits that plan to visit campus both officially and unofficially for Saturday’s scrimmage. While we sit and anxiously await the confirmation that the the spring game is still on, there could be good news in the air defeating any weather that heads toward Columbus if one of those top recruits on campus leaves as a Buckeye commit.

We’re still good, right?

Almost each and every recruiting cycle under Urban Meyer—as Buckeye head coach—we have seen at least one pledge from a St. Thomas Aquinas (Fla.) player. Off the top of everyone’s mind, you can certainly think of the Bosa brothers, but even besides those two there has been more to come north and suit up for Ohio State. A pipeline for the Buckeyes, this Florida (and national) powerhouse has been nothing short of amazing for Buckeye football recruiting—and this year is hoping to be no different. Safety prospect Jordan Battle is the one that comes to mind most when considering this year’s Aquinas “must have” prospect.

The 6-foot-1, 190-pounder can do it all in the secondary. Whether it’s in pass coverage or in run defense, Battle is a guy Ohio State and many others would obviously love to add to the fold in their 2019 class. Currently pegged as the No. 30 safety in the class, any evaluation— whether from coaches or scouts—has proved what Ohio State already knows: Battle can flat out play.

Where things get a little tricky, however, is this weekend.

Battle was slated to officially visit the Buckeyes this weekend for the spring game, and there’s thought that he may have even been on commitment watch while in Columbus. However, yesterday evening, news leaked that Battle would in fact not be coming to Ohio State after all. Instead, there’s rumors that he could be visiting Miami in place of the Buckeye visit. Before we get too worked up, there’s a few items to keep in mind.

The weather this weekend for the spring game may end in the result of a cancellation. With these early official visits, it would be a real shame for Battle to come all this way just to see a cancelled game. In fact, his change of plans may have been the result of a Ohio State staff suggestion. Secondly, he’s still a Buckeye target that remains nothing but sky-high on Ohio State. In fact, most in the recruiting scene have Battle pegged to OSU.

A crowded top group

While the Buckeyes are able to recruit nationally just as well as anyone in the country, there’s still a major priority to keep tabs on the best in-state kids. Keeping the borders locked up around the state from poaching programs is something Meyer and staff have said they’d like to do better. Well, 2019 provides that opportunity to put their money where their mouth is. One target they’d really like to keep home is Mentor, Ohio, native Noah Potter. The country’s 18th best defensive end and Ohio’s eighth best player has deep Ohio State ties— and one’s pretty obvious as his older brother, Micah, is a player on the Ohio State basketball roster.

A talented family to say the least, the younger Potter brother is also thought to easily be considered a Buckeye “lock” if there is such thing. A commitment timetable hasn’t been really something of discussion with Noah, but when you’re an in-state prospect, there’s always reason to believe a pledge in favor of the Bucks could come at any time. Yesterday though, in somewhat of a interesting article with Bill Kurelic of Bucknuts.com, Potter was quoted as saying both Wisconsin and Florida have made their way into his top group of schools joining Penn State and, of course, Ohio State.

Now, while we don’t want to take anything away from Noah, and it’s true that his interest in those programs is there considering his words, but still, Ohio State is clearly the leader in everyone’s mind and most likely Noah’s as well. Again, respecting his interest in those schools may just be a formality, but Meyer, the coaching staff, and Buckeye Nation in general would be shocked if Potter went anywhere besides Ohio State to further his academic and athletic careers. A commitment is always a possibility and until then, guarantee this coaching staff will be doing all they can to secure it.