Thursday kicked off day one of Big Ten Media Days in Indianapolis. Besides Kevin Warren talking in circles about virtually nothing and Jim Harbaugh’s “going to or die trying” quote in regards to questions concerning beating the Buckeyes, it was a pretty uneventful day concerning Ohio State. That is of course the expectation without Ryan Day speaking thus far. The Buckeyes will have tons of attention on Friday, however, as it’s now their day at the podium to give a small glimpse in previewing the season.
With media days garnering most if not all of of the attention this late in the week, recruiting news has definitely slowed down, and Thursday made for a pretty uneventful day on the trail. That said, this is a perfect time to do a little bit of a deep dive in the 2022 class and round out what would be a perfect finish for the nation’s current top-ranked class on just the offensive side of the ball. Defense will come later. Let’s get started.
With 17 commits already in the fold, there are some positions that are completely wrapped up, and some that will still see additions. Here’s a best guess at the status of each offensive position group, and who could be the likely players to join the class on that side of the ball when all is said and done.
100% full and finished. Having the nation’s No. 1 overall recruit who just so happens to be the next generational quarterback talent in the class, nothing else is needed. Quinn Ewers is the best quarterback the Buckeyes could bring in, and they have him totally bought in. Ryan Day and Corey Dennis couldn’t have done a better job here.
One in the fold and that is all that’s needed for this 2022 cycle. After landing the top-ranked running back in the class last year in TreVeyon Henderson, the running back spot is set up for years to come. Add Evan Pryor to the mix as well in the 2021 class, and you see why Tony Alford and Ohio State are more than satisfied with only needing one running back in the fold for this year. Getting who they wanted the most, Dallan Hayden, the nation’s 21st best back, is a job well done. Bias aside, Hayden’s ranking isn’t even close to as good as what this staff believes he is.
Nobody should be surprised by this, but still, you have to begin to wonder if Brian Hartline is actually human at this rate of success on the recruiting trail every year. Ohio State has four receivers in the fold for the 2022 class, and are completely done recruiting the position. All they’ll be doing from here on is working to keep this group of talented stars together.
In the fold includes the second-best 247Sports receiver, Caleb Burton, the sixth-best 247Sports receiver, Kyion Grayes, the seventh-best 247Sports receiver, Kaleb Brown, and last but not least, the eighth-best receiver in the class, Kojo Antwi.
If you’re keeping track at home, yes — Ohio State boasts an incredible four of the top 10 247Sports receivers in the 2022 class. That right there is why Hartline is the top receivers coach in the country, and why the Buckeyes are all done at the position.
The tight end position makes for the fourth position group in a row that is totally full and complete for the 2022 recruiting class. With two guys already in the fold thanks to Bennett Christian and Benji Gosnell, this is further proof that the staff was all systems go with this 2022 class from the start. They have made their lives easier when it comes down to crunch time late in the game. Four of the five position groups are set to go.
The one remaining position group on the offensive side of the ball, the Buckeyes have two guys committed currently, but certainly aren’t finished here. In-state product Tegra Tshabola was one of the first guys to commit in the class and as the 18th best offensive tackle in the class, the four-star Ohio native was a priority from the beginning. Though he may slide inside at the next level, Tshabola is a big time addition to replenish the trenches.
Joining the aforementioned Tshabola as the second offensive lineman, the most recent commit to the 2022 class for Ohio State is Colorado native George Fitzpatrick. The 29th best tackle in the class, Ohio State sees a ton of potential and an under the radar recruit in Fitzpatrick. His long frame is perfect for adding weight, and though he may be a bit of a developmental player his first couple years on campus, the pay off in the end is what has the staff excited.
So knowing there’s two guys already in the class, that leaves in most opinions two remaining spaces up for grabs. One could make the argument that if enough elite caliber guys wanted in the fold that the Buckeyes could take on three more rather than just two, but the safe bet at this point is under the thinking that four total is the likely number the staff takes along the offensive line.
Without going into great depth on each one, here are three names that are worth watching moving forward due to their interest in the Buckeyes and who the staff has the best chances with.
Kam Dewberry: Just talked about on Thursday after receiving a Crystal Ball prediction in favor of the Buckeyes, Dewberry is not only a player the staff would love to add, but he’s a kid that reciprocates the interest and is one that in all honestly very well could be part of the class when he makes a final decision. Ohio State will have to fend off the in-state Texas A&M Aggies, but they sit very well in regards to the nation’s 108th best player overall and 11th-ranked offensive tackle in the 2022 cycle. Here’s to pulling another top Texas player out of the Lone Star State.
Earnest Greene: Greene fits everything you could want as a major addition to the offensive line haul. Ranked as the second-best interior offensive lineman in the class as well as being the 61st best player nationally, Earnest is the total package. He’s made it clear how he feels about the Buckeyes, and what makes it even better is the fact that he’s from St. John Bosco in California. Of course, that’s the same prep power that produced former Buckeye Wyatt Davis, who is now in the NFL after an All-American caliber career at Ohio State. Landing Greene would further build that pipeline and give the offensive line a major talent inside to be another Davis type of star to anchor the trenches.
Aamil Wagner: Anytime there’s a top offensive lineman in the class is within your state lines, he’s typically a priority. Huber Heights Wayne product Aamil Wagner is the 12th-ranked offensive tackle in the country for the 2022 class and is just over an hour from campus. This recruitment is a bit different than most top in-state kids and it isn’t because he doesn’t like Ohio State, but it’s rather a matter of how he “fits” with the Buckeyes based on his personality and the way Ohio State goes about it’s business. That’s not to say he can’t or won’t end up as part of the class, but if he does, it’d be due to the staff recruiting him a little more aggressively. Still, an in-state player of this caliber, you have to think the staff will play it close to the vest until the room is full.
Sure, there are other names within the position group that could be realistic options for Ohio State. There’s plenty of guys they have offered who are still going through the process, but these three names are a good start as to whom is most interested. These three options are more than solid, and would round up what is an epic offensive haul for Ryan Day and the rest of the Buckeyes’ staff on that side of the ball.