It is the time of the year when the best college football programs separate themselves from the average football programs. With spring practices complete, and fall camp still months away, it seems that not much is happening in the world of college football’s exceptional programs. But that is deception. Now is the time for the best programs to work on building their depth. For now, the only good news about active players is no news. That also means that coaches have the chance to scout more recruiting talent, and visit high schools to get a better look at younger prospects.
This is exactly what the proprietor of Zone 6, wide receivers coach Zach Smith, has been doing so far this week, at least according to his Twitter account.
OH ✈️ KY ✈️ Indy ✈️ Chicago ✈️ STL— Zach S❌ith #Zone6 (@CoachZachSmith) May 22, 2018
All in 2 Days. #Zone6
The receiving corp has been superb these last few years and Smith has his work cut out for him in the 2019 class. Ohio State could lose as many as seven receivers, either to graduation or the NFL Draft after this season, meaning that the Buckeyes need a bunch of receivers in this group. Luckily for the Buckeyes, 2019 is a great year for receivers and quite a few of the nation’s elite are very interested in Ohio State.
With five-star Texas product Garrett Wilson already in the fold, Ohio Satte is still looking for three or four more wideouts in this class. That’s where Zach Smith’s recent field trip comes in. Ohio State has top receiver targets in each of the places he visited, and many of them are guys that have been on commitment watch for weeks now. Let’s take a look at who those players are.
Milton Wright: There’s one player in Kentucky that fits the billing for this visit, Milton Wright from Louisville, Kentucky. Wright, who is a 6-foot-3, 190-pounder has been on Ohio State’s radar for quite some time, though in terms of receiver priority, he’s probably on their second or third tier.
A big-bodied, raw deep threat with great hands, Wright is exactly what Ohio State likes in a primary receiver, and is pretty comparable in terms of physical traits to Buckeye receivers like Binjimen Victor and Austin Mack. However, Ohio State has other similar receivers higher on, so this visit is likely more of a feel out visit than anything. At this point, we will be surprised if Wright doesn’t end up at either Louisville or Kentucky.
David Bell: The obvious answer here is David Bell. The 6-foot-2, 185-pound Warren Central product is ranked No. 100 nationally, according to 247Sports, and has been one of Ohio State’s top 2019 receivers for months now. Despite rumors of a possible parting of ways earlier this year, Ohio State is still fully interested in Bell, and vice versa.
Bell is a perfect compliment to the smaller, quicker Garrett Wilson, and would fit Ohio State’s needs for an outside receiver very nicely. He’s got great straight line speed, and an impressive ability to win jump balls, due in large part to his experience playing basketball. His body control and route running ability make him one of the more technically advanced receivers in the class, and Ohio State would love to add him to the class.
They won’t be able to do that without a battle. Bell has no intentions of committing anywhere right now, and would prefer to enjoy the recruiting process. He’s taken visits to Indiana, Penn State and Iowa recently, and will almost certainly be on campus at both Ohio State and Purdue for official visits at some point. At this point, I think Ohio State leads here, but Jeff Brohm is really making this one interesting.
Jahleel Billingsley: Who says Zach Smith has to stick to receivers only? Phiilips Academy product Jahleel Billingsley is one of the best tight ends in the class of 2019, and sits at 282nd nationally, though he’ll certainly rise during the summer. The 6-foot-4, 216-pound hybrid athlete plays more like a receiver than he does a TE, and top teams are starting to notice his potential.
Billinglsey picked up an Alabama offer yesterday, and has been a very popular topic of discussion at Ohio State, Florida, Illinois and Alabama, the four schools I’d consider to be the leaders in his recruitment at this point. He visited Florida over the weekend, and named them the team on top for his recruitment.
Billingsley is pretty much Ohio State’s only tight end target for 2019, and if they miss on him, I don’t think they’ll rush to find another one to fill his spot. At this point, however, Florida is my prediction, and that won’t change unless Ohio State gets him back on campus soon.
Jameson Williams: There’s one player on this list that I’d consider to be on true commitment watch, and it’s Jameson Williams. Jameson is one of the best receivers in this class (181st nationally, 27th among receivers), and he’s definitely one of Ohio State’s top priorities at the position.
He was on campus back in April, and will be on campus again this summer. If Ohio State pushes for a pledge, Williams will be a Buckeye, and even if they don’t right now, I think it’s only a matter of time. Jameson has had plenty of good things to say about the Buckeyes in the past, and adding him to the class would be a huge .
Marcus Washington: Just 30 minutes down the road from Williams and Cardinal Ritter College Prep is another top Buckeye receiver target, Marcus Washington, who is ranked No. 59 nationally. He is another top priority for Ohio State. He’s pretty similar to Williams and Bell, but that’s not a bad thing, because they’re all supremely talented.
Washington, like Williams, is favoring Ohio State at this point. He has a commitment date set for Aug. 7, and barring any changes in the next three months (a teen changing his mind in the span of three months has definitely never happened) Ohio State will be the pick.
We’re still way out from the early signing period, but the receiver class is becoming very clear. Right now, my prediction for the class is Wilson, Bell, Williams and Washington. That would be the best receiving group Urban Meyer has ever landed. That seems pretty good.
New Jersey defensive end David Ojabo picked up an Ohio State offer. 2017 was the first time he played football, so he’s very raw, but Larry Johnson loves his game. Keep an eye on this one.
2020 Colorado defensive tackle Aidan Keanaaina landed a Buckeye offer. He’s raw, but Ohio State is very interested. His recruitment has been blowing up recently, and he’ll probably be a top tackle in 2020.
I am honored to have received an offer from The Ohio State University! #2020Recruit #DefensiveLine Thank you! @CoachTonyAlford @R2X_Rushmen1 @OSUCoachMeyer @OhioStateFB @OhioStFootball @Mullen_Strength @SixZeroStrength @bangulo @SWiltfong247 @adamgorney @TheBuckeyeNut #GoBucks pic.twitter.com/tTR6MlKHkC— Aidan Ikaika Keanaaina (@AidanAkfootball) May 22, 2018