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Column: Ohio State could finish with their highest ranked class in program history

The Buckeyes could be assembling a recruiting haul like never seen before inside of the program.

NCAA Football: Ohio State Spring Game Joseph Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports

Ohio State has had no shortage of fireworks on the recruiting trail for quite some time now with the likes of Urban Meyer previously and Ryan Day at the helm now. It’s a program that has been able to sign 20 five-stars prospects in the last five years and 90 of the blue-chip variety in that same exact span. The talent accumulation in Columbus is both jaw-dropping and at the same time, unsurprising anymore. It’s a trend that has continued time and time again by a group of coaches that are consistently assembling classes that battle yearly for the recruiting crown.

Back in 2018 the program reached an accomplishment that put them in rare territory. The Buckeyes plucked a five-star trio out of the state of Florida in Tyreke Johnson, Nicholas Petit-Frere, and Taron Vincent. They were the headliners and the three highest-ranked players in a class that will see a few guys playing on Sunday’s when all is said and done. It was a group that would ultimately finish as the second-best class in the nation that year only behind the Bulldogs of Georgia. But most importantly, it would be a haul that is still, four years later, the highest graded group of signees in program history.

NCAA Football: Indiana at Ohio State Joseph Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports

Fast forward to how things stand today and Ohio State has pieced together an awe-inspiring 2022 class so far capped off by Quinn Ewers, “Captain Buckeye” C.J. Hicks, and Jaheim Singletary. It’s a class that could be well on their way to eventually surpassing that unique bunch a few years ago and while a few things will have to go their way in the next handful of months, it is certainly not out of the realm of possibilities.

It’s worth noting that with it only being July, things could rapidly change when it comes to both Ohio State’s standing with these prospects and the rankings of the targets and commitments that are already in the fold. But right now, the Buckeyes class upholds 286.83 points on the 247Sports Composite Scale. Looking at the players that the Scarlet and Gray are currently favored to land, it’s not a farfetched idea that Ryan Day, in just three years, could already be set to reach another milestone on the recruiting trail.

On the 247Sports Crystal Ball, the Buckeyes are currently tied or the wide favorite for four-star safety Zion Branch, four-star defensive lineman Caden Curry, four-star defensive end Kenyatta Jackson, four-star defensive lineman Chris McClellan, four-star safety Xavier Nwankpa, and four-star offensive tackle Aamil Wagner. This finish would rival but not surpass that 2018 group, at least not as things stand now.

But as mentioned, rankings can change for better (and worse) and that also doesn’t even count a slew of other players that the Buckeyes are very much in play for. What if instead of, or even in addition to Wagner, Ohio State is able to secure five-star Zach Rice, four-star Kam Dewberry, four-star Earnest Greene, or four-star Addison Nichols along the offensive line.

Another place to monitor closely is along the defensive line. Five-star Omari Abor, four-star Enai White, and four-star Hero Kanu are names that could wind up as potential ammunition for Larry Johnson.

Syndication: The Columbus Dispatch Adam Cairns/Columbus Dispatch via Imagn Content Services, LLC

Throw in potential additions like three-star linebacker Carson Tabaracci of Park City (UT) and it’s safe to say, the Buckeyes could be slowly but surely en route to making history.Will it happen? That’s something that will likely keep Buckeye Nation intrigued as we inch closer to the two signing periods. It’s also something that should not be a shock if it does come to fruition. Why? because Ryan Day and the coaching staff constructed in Columbus looks like a group on a mission and the likelihood of them slowing down even slightly on the recruiting trail could be nothing more than wishful-thinking for other programs across the country.