The Ohio State Buckeyes had just one verbal commit choose not to sign with the program during the early signing period in four-star offensive tackle Doug Nester (Huntington, WV / Spring Valley.)
Nester decided to hold off on signing following the announcement that former Urban Meyer would be stepping away as head coach and handing the reins over to Ryan Day. The move wasn’t scrutinized because it was understandable the Nester wanted to build on his relationship with coach Day to ensure Ohio State was still the right school for him. However, it left the Buckeyes scrambling to find a backup plan as Nester was the first verbal commit for Ohio State in its 2019 recruiting class.
Since then, Ohio State has remained a player in the race for Nester’s services but both Penn State and Virginia Tech become much more realistic options. With Penn State the favorite to steal him away from the Buckeyes.
Fast-forward to today and it now appears that Nester will be signing with Virginia Tech on Wednesday. The blue-chip prospect is coming off an official visit with the Hokies and since, the program has overtaken Ohio State as the favorite to land Nester in the 247Sports Crystal Ball Predictions.
With that being said, Ohio State has seemed to narrow his replacement in the class down to two other talented OTs in four-star Enokk Vimahi (Kahuku, HI, / Kahuku) and three-star Dawand Jones (Indianapolis, IN / Ben Davis).
Ohio State hosted Vimahi for an official visit Jan. 25 and the visit went as well as possible. The Buckeyes looked to be real candidates to land him but alas, USC is still the favorite to land with only one day remaining until he must make a decision.
Which leaves us with Jones. Since Nester elected not to sign with Ohio State, Jones quickly became the favorite to earn the last spot in the Buckeyes’ 2019 class. He officially visited with the program on Jan. 11 and Buckeye coaches Ryan Day and Greg Studrawa returned the favor visiting him Feb. 2.
It appears as though Jones has made up his mind and went on Twitter Monday to announce where he will sign his letter of intent on Wednesday.
I will be announcing which college I’m going to and signing with Wednesday at 6:30 pm in the Hall of Champions of Ben Davis High School anyone is welcome to come ‼️‼️ pic.twitter.com/2GpM7zPZpt— Dawand Jones (@dawand_jones) February 4, 2019
While nothing is certain in recruiting until pen is put to paper, Ohio State is the runaway favorite to land Jones, holding 90-percent of the 247Sports Crystal Ball Predictions. The main competitor for Ohio State in securing a commitment is a familiar foe, Penn State.
Buckeye Nation may be quick to jump to the conclusion that Ohio State is settling for Jones and losing Nester to Virginia Tech is a loss for the program. It is unarguable that Nester would have made for a great addition to Ohio State’s 2019 class, but so is Jones.
There is a silver lining in all of this. When Nester first decided not to sign with the Buckeyes, Penn State was the favorite to land him and again, they were the Buckeyes’ biggest competition for Jones as well. However, it now appears that the in-conference foe will walk away without either now.
- Ohio State will be getting a visit from former Tennessee captain and graduate-transfer candidate TE Eli Wolf. Wolf visited Georgia on Jan. 27 and has a visit to Ohio State planned for after National Signing Day. His scholarship will count towards the 2020 class.