It’s been a week that’s brought some great news in regards to Ohio State football. With word coming forth that the Buckeyes are set to return to campus on June 8, it’s a big step in the right direction for football returning. Let’s be honest, a season in any form would suffice. At this point, with the withdrawals we’ve had thanks to the elimination of any on field activity — including spring ball being scrapped — Buckeye football can’t return quick enough.
Fortunately, the Buckeye staff has made up for the lack of on-field action with their incredible recruiting success. In both the 2021 and 2022 classes, Ohio State has seen tremendous positives that have left us with a sense of contentment even without other football news. The ability to recruit this well in times of uncertainty prove how dedicated Ryan Day, Mark Pantoni and the rest of the gang are at bringing in the best talent they can find. As always, the staff is on the hunt to bring in the next great player to suit up for the Bucks.
Buckeyes offer 2022 defensive tackle
Between the defensive line and the secondary, the Buckeyes have proven themselves to be among the best in the nation at producing elite players for the pros. Every NFL Draft there’s a first round defensive lineman or DB coming off the board early from Ohio State, and that of course proved to be true this year when the position groups went back-to-back in picks No. 2 and No. 3 with Chase Young and Jeff Okudah.
The Buckeye staff knows exactly what they’re doing with their recipe for continued success. That plan is to find the best talent they can, develop it for three to four years, and reap the rewards as they watch that cycle repeat. Finding those players, though, is mission number one.
Yesterday, Ohio State was back on the recruiting trail and offered their latest prospect in the class of 2022. Dominick “Nick” James was on the receiving end of the coveted Buckeye offer, and wasted no time in announcing via his Twitter account that OSU has now entered his recruiting scene.
Beyond blessed to receive an offer from The Ohio State @CoachBA1010 @KoachingEmUp @IMGAcademy @R2X_Rushmen1 @ryandaytime @OhioStateFB @Rivals @247Sports @ChadSimmons_ @DemetricDWarren #AGTG pic.twitter.com/hjeqWKMgdu— Nick james (@Njames9999) May 21, 2020
A 6-foot-2, 270 pound defensive tackle, James is the perfect man in the middle of the defensive line to not only clog the running gaps, but also pressure the quarterback, making it a nightmare for opposing offensive lineman. Originally from Alabama, James played his 2019 sophomore season for the very highly regarded Prattville Lions before transferring to Florida’s prestigious IMG Academy. A move that will only garner more national attention for James, having to face a schedule like IMG Academy week in and week out plus having two successful prep seasons there will put his name on everybody’s radar.
Currently, James checks in as the No. 8 defensive tackle in the class for 2022, and is also ranked as the 24th-best player in Florida as well as the 169th-best player overall, according to 247Sports. A four-star prospect already, James now has double-digit offers from the likes of Auburn, Florida State, Tennessee, Texas A&M, and Ohio State among others.
Now that the Buckeyes have thrown their hat into the ring, all they really need to do is point to Larry Johnson’s track record and show James why he can continue the trend if he were to choose Ohio State. That pitch alone will be worth it’s weight moving forward.
OSU looks to close the deal
According to 247Sports, the Buckeyes have the top ranked player in Kentucky for the 2021 class in Jantzen Dunn. In the composite rankings, however, Dunn trails another stud from Kentucky who Buckeye fans certainly need no introduction of — Jager Burton.
One of the best interior offensive linemen in the country, he’s being chased by other programs besides just Ohio State, but the Buckeyes are still more than just in the running. A player that has been in constant communication with the staff whether it be via Zoom calls or text, Burton has to know how much of a priority he is for Ryan Day and company.
An interesting aspect of Burton’s recruitment is that he’s not shy at all putting on social media different graphics and such that may make you do a bit of a double-take to see if he announced his commitment or not. Almost regularly, Burton is tweeting about his top schools such as Kentucky and the Buckeyes, and there’s definitely nothing wrong with a high school kid enjoying the moment.
With the class of 2021 in particular, Ohio State is hoping Burton will be one of the few spots remaining in what will hopefully lock in the Buckeyes as the nation’s top overall class when all is said and done.
Yesterday, the 6-foot-4, 270 pound offensive guard tweeted another graphic in favor of the Buckeyes and, if you were just scrolling, it could have caught your attention as a commitment. While that was not the case, it’s still very positive to see Jager tweeting about the 2021 haul Ohio State has.
Making it clear earlier this week that he will be early enrolling to the college of his choice this coming December, an announcement regarding his commitment would presumably come by fall. If it were to come sooner, Ohio State does currently have the consensus in the 247Sports crystal balls. Even though that’s not the end all be all, it definitely should breathe in some confidence that the Buckeyes can land not one, but two of the best players from their neighbors south of the state line.