This week certainly hasn’t gone exactly how the Ohio State football staff and players would have liked. After announcing a week-long pause of football related activities, heads began to swirl in worries that this could be round two of last March’s fiasco. Fortunately, this pause is more of a precaution, and shouldn’t have any impact on the start of spring football practices for the team. Still, this latest happening isn’t ideal for any of the parties involved, and all you can do is hope that this week off does everything the program needs in order to start fresh as they prepare for their 2021 campaign.
With this time off, one could bet pretty confidently that the staff will shift majority of their focus to their recruiting efforts since they can’t be inside the Woody. Being used to recruiting virtually by now, Ryan Day and his crew will clearly have some extra time to continue contacting both the guys they want and already have in the fold.
Recent offer already a Buckeye lean?
On Monday of this week, the Buckeyes dished out an offer to in-state four-star offensive tackle prospect Aamil Wagner. The Huber Heights Wayne product had been one of the very few top in-state players to not yet have an Ohio State offer, but that was a welcomed change when the nation’s 13th-best offensive tackle finally got the news that the premier hometown program had finally come calling. Wagner is the top-ranked lineman in Ohio for the 2022 class, and that is clearly someone you want to keep at home and away from others — especially rival Big Ten schools.
The late offer is likely a result of the coaching staff being unable to see him in person or really get a solid feel for him due to the ongoing dead period. With the frame Wagner has, he’s not yet college ready in terms of his playing weight, but clearly the Buckeyes and several other schools see what he could develop into both size and ability wise. One thing that’s for sure, the length is there. With the dead period still in effect, the thinking here is that if Ohio State was going to offer him eventually anyways, there’s no sense in waiting it out when other programs could swoop in and try to steal him away.
Yesterday, Bill Kurelic of Bucknuts submitted a Crystal Ball prediction in favor of Ohio State to land Wagner, and when a crystal ball comes from Kurelic, the chances are pretty solid considering he only makes those picks when he has a feeling of high confidence. If Wagner does choose the Buckeyes in the end, it gives Ohio State another highly-touted offensive lineman and one that is just over an hour away from campus. It would be great to pair him with current commit Tegra Tshabola, who is ranked as the nation’s No. 16 tackle and the sixth-best player in Ohio for this 2022 cycle. If the Buckeyes are able to land both of those in-state studs, it really provides a sense of depth moving forward.
Sticking with the theme of offensive line, the topic of numbers has to be addressed. With thoughts that Ohio State could be on the receiving end of a tackle commit, where would that leave things with other top tackle prospects like Kiyaunta Goodwin? Ohio State would certainly not turn away from Goodwin if he wants to join the class. On that note, offering Wagner also doesn’t mean that the Buckeyes are worried about their chances with one of the fastest rising players in the 2022 class.
Currently, Ohio State owns every Crystal Ball prediction for Goodwin, and there’s plenty of reason for optimism that he will in fact choose Ohio State in the end. This could very well be one of the best tackle hauls the Buckeyes have pulled come signing day.
- Offensive line recruiting is the main theme of this edition of State Secrets, and it continues with 2022 target Jaylen Early. Ranked as the No. 21 offensive tackle in the class, the Duncanville, Texas native could play at either tackle or guard at the next level. In regards to Ohio State, Early told 247sports that the Buckeyes have been in contact regularly and they are recruiting him hard. The interest seems mutual, as he has also expressed how impressed he is with the Buckeyes. Ohio State has dominated in recruiting Texas lately, and they’ll look to continue that trend in the rest of their 2022 class.