It’s been a big week for Ohio State football. Monday saw the players coming back to campus for voluntary football workouts — an important step in the right direction for the return of college football. Something we all want and need, a season in any respect is just what the doctor ordered. As the summer months are now here, the Buckeyes and other programs across the country will be getting back to a new normal.
As the players are going through their training in preparation for the 2020 season, there’s still a priority in recruiting for the Buckeyes coaching staff. With the nation’s top class right now, sitting at 19 commitments, there’s still a handful of spots that need to be filled and hopefully with guys that will keep the Ohio State class atop the leader board. With plenty of top prospects still undecided on their college decisions, the Buckeyes know there’s still work to be done. Fortunately, they’ve done that work at the highest level and plan on keeping it that way.
Rocco updates recruitment status
Ohio State has had a pretty good run at recruiting offensive line prospects when it comes to doing so behind enemy lines. The ability to go in and land top prospects up front is paramount for a team’s success, but when you’re able to do it in a way that hurts your rival both on and off the field, it makes for an even better feat. Specifically, think of guys like Michael Jordan, a Canton, Michigan native who not only started for the Buckeyes as a freshman, but is of course now making his money as an NFL offensive guard. You can see exactly why Ohio State was so excited to steal an elite lineman out of the Wolverines’ back yard.
While having Jordan in a Buckeye uniform wasn’t long ago at all, Ohio State is still trying their best to have another successful recruitment of a top Michigan offensive guard in the class of 2021. Clarkston native Rocco Spindler is the second-best guard in the country according to the 247Sports composite rankings, and is also the third-best player in Michigan in this cycle. A 6-foot-5, 315 pound classic bruiser in the trenches, Spindler has long been on Ohio State’s radar, but seems to be behind Notre Dame and Michigan in the standings to land his services.
In late May, Spindler released his final five schools that he would be considering before making a final call, which included Ohio State, Michigan, Penn State, Notre Dame, and LSU. As time has gone on, rumors have been swirling that Rocco may be nearing a decision and going forward with a commitment. Yesterday, that rumor was put to bed when Spindler himself took to his Twitter account to make it clear that he in fact will not be committing soon, and is still fully planning on taking all five of his allotted official visits to the five schools he’s considering.
Just wanted to let everyone know that I will NOT be committing Anytime soon. Not until I take all 5 officials. Which will be... Michigan, Ohio State, Notre Dame, Penn state, LSU.— Rocco Spindler (@RoccoSpindler92) June 11, 2020
(No interviews thank you) pic.twitter.com/plvJF4q5WX
All of this may lean towards positive news for Ohio State, specifically as it will give them every bit of a puncher’s chance at picking up more momentum with Spindler and hopefully being able to close the deal. The chance to get him back on campus at least once more can pay dividends, as it’s been proven time and time again that Ohio State knows exactly how to roll out the red carpet for their top targets. Until then, the Buckeyes will continue to make Spindler feel like a priority in this class as they do their best to fend off the other four schools.
The latest on the nation’s top receiver
Emeka Egbuka needs no introduction, so the details will be spared since by now everyone knows the nation’s top-ranked receiver prospect. The Buckeyes are thought to be front-runner to land the five-star prospect, and the 247Sports Crystal Ball predictions pretty much confirm that Ohio State is the team to beat. If it comes to fruition, position coach Brian Hartline and the Buckeyes would land the top-ranked receiver in the country in back-to-back recruiting cycles. However, until the fax machine shows Egbuka is locked in the 2021 class, there’s still work to be done.
The latest rumblings on Egbuka shed light on his recruitment, and prove that due to the pandemic, the timeline for the receiver and his pending commitment has shifted his original plans. The details are in regards to his visits and the plans to do so. If it wasn’t for the virus, some of Egbuka’s visits may have already been completed. With that not being the case of course, the main news here is that Egbuka is hoping for the ability to officially visit his top four schools sooner rather than later, with plans to sign in December and enroll early to the college of his choice.
The Buckeyes have already hosted the top receiver two times, and will surely have him on campus for a third if possible. That third visit could be the deciding factor in his recruitment, but with how things have gone thus far, Ohio State may already have closed the deal with him. There’s still time, and some aspects are up in the air, but the noteworthy news to focus on here overall is that there is no impending commitment for Egbuka based on the inability to visit his top remaining schools to this point.
- According to Bucknuts.com analyst Bill Kurelic, 2022 four-star receiver, Darrius Clemons (Portland, Oregon/Westview) has “strong interest” in Ohio State, and has been in communication with both Brian Hartline and quality control coach Keenan Bailey. Clemons currently checks in as the 18th-best receiver in the country and the top player in Oregon for his class.
- 2021 Ohio State offensive line target Jager Burton announced a commitment yesterday — not to his college choice, but to the All-American Bowl. Burton is the 10th-best guard in the country and is seemingly between Ohio State and Kentucky most closely, but the Buckeyes seem to have been losing some traction to the in-state Wildcats with the inability to get Burton on campus.