It’s camp season in college football, which means that teams all over the country are either hosting or traveling to camps to check out prospective recruits. It’s an important part of the recruiting cycle, as coaches get a better idea of future targets worth recruiting. It also helps determine if current class recruits are “takes” or not. More often than not, at least one or two recruits in any class will be the result of a camp offer. Sometimes it’s because a specific coach saw something they really liked, sometimes it’s because the player answered a question the whole staff had, and sometimes it’s just because they showcased an impressive amount of athleticism and skill.
We’ve seen this plenty at Ohio State under Urban Meyer. Since 2013, guys like Darron Lee, Malik Hooker, Brady Taylor, Stephen Collier, Rashod Berry, Damon Arnette, Jahsen Wint, Malik Harrison, Elijah Gardiner, Marcus Hooker and Alex Williams are just some that earned offers from Ohio State after an impressive camp. It’s a valuable tool for coaches to identify hidden gems, and look for raw athletic potential.
Obviously it’s not a perfect science, and football is played in pads, not shorts and t-shirts, but seeing recruits play without pads or hitting can tell coaches a lot that film can’t. Yesterday, Ohio State hosted one of what will be many camps this summer. Quite a bit of top talent was in attendance, including quarterback Tyler Van Dyke, athlete Craig Young, and tight end Brenton Strange among others.
There was quite a bit of social media buzz yesterday about each recruit I mentioned, and we’ll take a look at some of that buzz, as well as what each of those guys offers as a player.
Tyler Van Dyke
Tyler Van Dyke was a bit of a surprise at the camp, because he wasn’t on many attendee lists heading up to yesterday. The 6-foot-4, 212-pound 2020 signal caller made his presence known very quickly.
Van Dyke, a Connecticut product, isn’t new to impressing at camps. He was at a Michigan camp just a few days ago, and lit up a West Virginia camp before that. Van Dyke isn’t yet ranked by 247Sports, but he seems to be headed towards the top of the class very quickly. He holds six offers, from Boston College, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Michigan, Rutgers and Syracuse, as well as interest from most of the ACC and Big Ten.
I think an Ohio State offer will be coming sooner rather than later, and Van Dyke can be considered one of their top quarterback targets in 2020, along with Jack Miller and Harrison Bailey.
Craig Young generated more hype than any other recruit in attendance today. The Fort Wayne product showed off his excellent athleticism at just about every position on the field, and despite being listed at receiver, he’s established himself as a defensive recruit to Ohio State.
According to reports from Letterman Row and Land of 10, Young didn’t just garner hype around his recruitment, he nearly ended it. Young had been waiting to get the green light from Ohio State’s staff to commit for months now, and all things indicate that he did get that green light today, after impressing the staff so thoroughly.
He plans to announce his college decision in the coming days, likely after talking to his family. At this point, I’d be shocked if Young doesn’t commit to Ohio State, and at this point, it’s likely just ironing out formalities.
At 6-foot-4, 210 pounds, Young doesn’t have a true position yet, but linebacker or safety seems like a solid prediction. He has the athleticism and skill to succeed at either, and ultimately, it’ll just come down to where Bill Davis and Greg Schiano prefer him.
It’s fair to say that tight end isn’t a huge need for Ohio State in the 2019 class. For several months now, it’s looked like they have little to no interest in any tight end for the class, and it was widely considered that they may just not take one in 2019. That may have changed yesterday.
West Virginia tight end Brenton Strange was in attendance, and impressed enough to pick up an offer from the Buckeyes.
Strange, a 6-foot-5, 210-pound receiving specialist isn’t very well known in the recruiting world. He’s ranked No. 992 by 247Sports, and holds just 13 total offers. Those offers include Maryland, North Carolina, Purdue, Rutgers and Wake Forest, as well as some G5 and FCS schools. However, he’s an impressive athlete, with great hands and a ton of speed.
That was on full display at the camp, and Kevin Wilson saw enough to convince him that Strange may be the best option at tight end in this class. It’s not entirely clear if Strange’s offer is commitable, but if it is, he could be a member of the class very soon.