I think it’s pretty easy to get caught up in the constant action of the recruiting world, especially on a day like yesterday, when Ohio State is landing a commitment from a four-star safety from across the country, a battle against Texas, and gliding into the second spot in the team rankings. That’s impressive, but I think it’s also extremely easy to lose sight at times at just how impressive it is.
No, this is not a “recruiting is hard and coaches are impressive for doing it” piece. I’m talking specifically about how impressive it is that Ryan Day, only a head coach for seven months, is doing all of this. That Ohio State holds the second best class, 21 commitments, and looks destined to land a pair of blue chip running backs and a blue chip linebacker to nearly seal their class before Aug. 3.
That’s nuts. It’s impossible. A first year coach doing this is almost unheard of, and the fact that Day is doing it at a school like Ohio State certainly adds context, but it doesn’t take away from the fact that Ryan Day is exceeding expectations on the recruiting trail.
That’s the thing I think we’re missing at times. It certainly feels like business as usual because of the job Day has done, but that could’ve so easily not been the case, and it would’ve been completely understandable. Ohio State could’ve had a transition year in recruiting, settling in around ten, making some noise in the Midwest and working to build for the future classes.
It hasn’t. As evidenced by the fact that Ohio State is about to land four-stars from Washington, California and three of the top five players from Arizona, Day has gone all in with recruiting in just his first year on the job. No hesitation. No feeling out process. No time for everyone to realize just how insane it is, that Ohio State just landed a blue-chip safety from Arizona over Texas, and that they’re probably going to do it again on August 2nd with Bijan Robinson.
Let’s take just a moment to recognize that. Seven months into the Ryan Day era, Ohio State has 21 pledges. Two five stars, including the best receiver in the country, nine top 100 players, ten four stars, and the number two class in the country, ahead of Alabama, Georgia, LSU and everyone that isn’t Clemson.
Is the class going to finish there? It’s hard to say. The Buckeyes are going to be almost completely done with this class by Aug. 3, which means that they can focus on 2021, but it also means that whatever they’re sitting at (points-wise) is pretty close to what they’re finishing with. A late flip or defensive lineman will give a small boost, but there may not be enough to top the Crimson Tide or Tigers quite yet.
Even if Day can’t quite do it this year, it’s pretty obvious that the new guy knows what he’s doing. With six months of work on the 2021 class, and one of the best players in the country already committed, it seems like Day’s day is coming sooner than later.