A lot of the focus lately has been on the 2022 class with all of the buzz that has been surrounding Ohio State, but there is still some heavy lifting to be done as Ryan Day and his staff look to close out 2021.
As things currently stand, the Buckeyes are in possession of the nation’s No. 2 class in the 2021 cycle, trailing only Alabama. However, they are behind by only six points, and with two fewer commitments than the Crimson Tide and a quartet of very highly-rated prospects still on their radar, it is definitely not out of the question that Ohio State finishes with the top class.
One of those key names they are still trying to land is four-star safety Derrick Davis Jr., the nation’s No. 2 safety and the No. 53 player in the class overall. Set to make his college decision this Saturday, Nov. 7, Davis will be choosing between Ohio State, Penn State and LSU after cutting Georgia and Pitt from his short list earlier this week.
After making a trip to Baton Rouge to check out the LSU campus this past weekend, Davis spoke with Rivals recruiting analyst Bruce Feldman to talk about his recruiting process and how his final three schools stack up with one another.
“I’ll probably know my decision on Wednesday,” Davis said. “It’s just Penn State, Ohio State, and LSU. I’m going to pick based off experience, who has the best system to help me get to the next level, and who can prepare me best for life after football.”
Davis had the following to say of the three schools in contention for his services:
Ohio State: “They have a very good business department,” Davis said. “Their football team is doing really well. The way they’re recruiting me is awesome and they’re always hitting me up to make sure I’m good.”
Penn State: “They’re recruiting me just like Ohio State,” he said. “The coaching staff is always there and makes sure I’m doing all right.”
LSU: “[They] really separated from Ohio State and Penn State with their diversity. Culturally, there are just so many different people. That was just great. I feel like I fit in perfectly. Even though I don’t know many of the commits, I just feel like the coaching staff made me feel comfortable even though they couldn’t even see me.”
While Davis certainly seems very interested in the Tigers, they appear to be his least likely destination, as they are very much playing catch up with OSU and PSU who have been in on 6-foot-1, 194-pound DB from the jump. They do, however, have the bonus of being the freshest in Davis’ mind, as he was able to get a feel for LSU this past weekend but wasn’t able to meet with coaches or tour the facilities with the continued NCAA dead period.
As the in-state program, Penn State currently has the lead in the 247Sports Crystal Ball department. However, while all three CBs are in favor of the Nittany Lions, those predictions were cast quite a while ago, with the most recent one coming in June. Since then, Ohio State’s commits were able to get Davis to come to Columbus for Buckeye Bash, where they may have been able to gain themselves some ground after a successful weekend.
It does really seem to be a two-horse race between Penn State and Ohio State. Maybe the Buckeyes earned themselves some brownie points this past weekend with their head-to-head victory on the field, but Davis said he didn’t really get to watch the game, so it probably didn’t have all that much of an impact. If I had to place a wager on it, I'd say he likely ends up in Happy Valley, but I wouldn’t put it past Kerry Coombs to work his magic and steal a massive addition to the 2021 class this weekend.
Look for Davis’ commitment to be sometime around 5 p.m. ET on Saturday.
- Four-star 2022 LB Jalon Walker will be cutting his list down to a top six on Friday, the North Carolina native announced via Twitter on Tuesday afternoon. The No. 2 OLB in the class and the No. 41 player overall, Walker previously included the Buckeyes in his top 10 back at the end of August, and it seems very likely they will make this cut as well.
TOP 6! Friday, November 6‼️ 2 pm EST— Jalon Walker (@JalonWlaker) November 3, 2020
- Ohio State sent out a new offer on Tuesday night to four-star defensive end Omari Abor. A native of Duncanville, TX, Abor is the No. 5 SDE in the country and the No. 93 player overall in the 2022 class.