Fresh off what may be the largest weekend of the 2020 recruiting cycle for Ohio State, there’s some, well, angst among some Buckeyes fans. The source of the angst? Well, it seems to be the fact that as of Tuesday night, the Buckeyes exited their massive weekend with two commitments. One from Clark Phillips, and one from 2021 receiver Jayden Ballard.
That’s not the five, six, or even seven commitments in the 2020 class that had been whispered about for weeks leading into this visit, and because it’s not the explosion of commitments that was maybe expected, there’s some angst, some concern, that the weekend didn’t work as planned. I can say definitively that that’s not the case, and that Buckeye fans have nothing to worry about.
The commitments are coming, sooner rather than later, but the recruiting game has changed a little bit. We see fewer commitments on visits, and more commitments shortly after visits, because, frankly, kids have gotten a little better at taking a step back and avoiding spur of the moment decisions. Does that take away a little bit of the excitement from a weekend like this one? Of course.
It is, however, a good thing for the Buckeyes in the long run. Landing a commitment a week or two after a visit means that the decision has been thought through, talked over with families and coaches, and really given the air needed to avoid a clouded choice. Taking that time leads to more solid commitments, and Ohio State really doesn’t want to be dealing with anything but solid commitments. Ryan Day has no interest in decommitments, and he has made it very clear that he wants his recruits to be 100 percent sure of their choices.
Leaving this weekend’s visit, I think that the five or six commitments that were hinted at are even more likely than they were entering it. Firstly, Phillips commitment was the most expected of the bunch, because it was pre-scheduled. Ohio State got him. Outside of Phillips, however, there were no commitment dates. Now we have some commitment dates.
Tackle Darrion Henry is committing on Saturday. Unless something absolutely insane happens, the choice will likely be Ohio State. Lathan Ransom and Bijan Robinson have both expressed interest in committing in early July at the latest. I think Ohio State has locked up Ransom, and is firmly in a battle with Texas for Robinson.
Cam Martinez, Cody Simon, Joe Royer and Kourt Williams have all expressed similar sentiments of committing before the season starts. I think Ohio State leads each of those recruitments too. All of this is essentially, a long way of saying that things are very, very good at Ohio State right now. Did the numbers go on the board this weekend? No. But Ohio State is now firmly in the lead for, by my count, six recruits who have serious interest in committing before August, and they’re absolutely in the thick of it for a seventh.
Sometimes, the best thing to do in recruiting is to be patient, and that’s what the Buckeyes are doing right now. It’s frustrating, as being patient tends to be, but Ohio State is very, very confident that this weekend convinced quite a few prospects that Columbus is the place for them to be. The only thing to do now is let those recruits come to that realization on their own.