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Buckeyes offer in-state DB despite recruiting hiatus

Can OSU land another gem from the Queen City?

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: DEC 28 CFP Semifinal at the Fiesta Bowl - Clemson v Ohio State Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The last 48 hours have been easily some of the most interesting times in sports history. When you consider the NBA, NHL, MLB, and the NCAA either postponing or cancelling events altogether, we’ve entered some uncharted waters thanks to this COVID-19 virus.

Earlier this week, Michigan suspended all in-person recruiting activities including unofficial and official visits. Ohio State then followed suit, and later the Big Ten as a whole. An easy solution would appear to be for the NCAA to make the July dead period a live one, and replace that dead period with the current time to alleviate the situation. At any rate, Ohio State may not be as active on the trail with in-person contact, but the staff will certainly be recruiting every other way possible.

Buckeyes offer Queen City DB

If there’s two areas that Kerry Coombs recruits incredibly well, it’s Michigan and his native city, Cincinnati. For the longest time, Cinci was a bit of a puzzle for the Buckeyes recruiting efforts as the entire city seemed like more of an out-of-state area than a fertile in-state hotbed. During Coombs’ first stint at OSU, Cincinnati started to come around more in favor of the Scarlet and Gray, and since then it’s been a city that has given the Buckeyes several top recruits. The one-time area of difficulty has become what Ohio State has hoped for all along.

The suspension of in-person recruiting activities was bound to happen, but that certainly wouldn’t stop Ohio State’s recruiting efforts in the long run. In fact, yesterday the Buckeyes made headlines as they sent out a new offer to Cincinnati (La Salle) product, Devonta Smith. A three-star cornerback, Smith is a 6-foot, 185-pound prospect that grades out as the nation’s 32nd best corner in the 2021 class and Ohio’s 14th best player overall.

Currently, Devonta boasts nearly 30 offers from top programs such as Alabama, Notre Dame, Penn State, Tennessee, and more with the Buckeyes of course being the latest. With defensive back being a serious position of need in the 2021 class, Smith was one target that for some time seemed destined to finally get the coveted in-state OSU offer. With that now in the fold, look for Smith to at least put some sort of timetable on a commitment.

Interestingly enough, La Salle is also the home to current 2021 Buckeye commit Jaylen Johnson, who also plays in the defensive backfield. Johnson, who before commiting seemed a bit underrated, has since seen his stock rise after pledging to Ohio State. Odds are the same likely would happen for Smith should he follow suit. With this new offer, Smith should be on commitment watch from here on out. However, with the recruiting period in limbo at the moment, it’s likely commitments could take some extra time.

Time will tell, but Smith being the next Queen City prospect to choose the Buckeyes wouldn’t be any sort of surprise if that is in fact his final call.

Quick Hits:

  • Current Florida commit and four-star athlete Kamar Wilcoxson set his official visit date to Ohio State for June 12-14. Wilcoxson has been committed to Florida since last July, but has been linked to the Buckeyes many times as a true flip candidate. The No. 16 athlete in the nation will likely play defensive back in college.