Though it’s now officially the offseason, it’s already been a busy period for Ohio State and their coaching staff. The latest coaching addition came this week with Justin Frye being named as the new offensive line coach among other responsibilities in his job title, as Ryan Day is ramping up his game to solidify his staff the best possible way he can. In addition, Brian Hartline also received a bit of a boost in his coaching duties, adding passing game coordinator to his title, and surely in his salary as well. Again, the efforts being made by coach Day are not going unnoticed, even in mid-January.
On the other side of the ball, talks have come to the surface that new defensive coordinator Jim Knowles is also in the middle of the interviewing process, as he’s now the boss on that end. Buckeye Nation has to be thrilled with what could be coming in the near future as the defense looks to get back to the higher standard of expectations. Simply put, while it’s not a total overhaul, this coaching staff is sure to look different enough in 2022.
On the recruiting front, Ohio State is going to keep busy even in the midst of their staff changes. Keeping the full court press on recent commit and their highest defensive line commit, Omari Abor, is a task they’ll have to endure until he officially signs, but the staff is also offering new players in the future cycles, showing the grind won’t stop for this crew. Buckle up. It should be a pretty busy offseason for the Buckeyes.
Latest offer goes out to 2023 receiver
Maybe he was never a realistic option to land elsewhere due to his Buckeye ties, but keeping Brian Hartline on this Ohio State staff for the foreseeable future is a huge priority for the program. What he’s been able to do on the field when it comes to development is second to none, and his recruiting chops are certainly next level too. Hartline is an integral part of not only the offense, but the team overall, and knowing that he’ll continue to be the one recruiting elite receivers to Columbus should give everyone some ease after he’s been pursued by Notre Dame.
On Wednesday, Hartline wasted no time in his new passing game coordinator role as he dished out the latest Ohio State offer to a 2023 receiver target out of Rolesville, North Carolina. On the receiving end, Noah Rogers took to his Twitter account to share that the Buckeyes were the latest to enter his recruitment and join 20 other programs from around the country to also be in the mix for his services.
A 6-foot-1, 180 pound receiver, Rogers is currently the 10th-ranked receiver in the class of 2023, as well as the top player in North Carolina and the No. 55 player in the country per the 247Sports Composite. Obviously an impressive list of accolades, some of the other suitors early on include Notre Dame, Oregon, Florida State, Tennessee, Kentucky, and of course the two big in-state schools, North Carolina and NC State, as well.
As it stands right now, Rogers has a single prediction submitted on the 247Sports Crystal Ball feature and it’s in favor of NC State. Only having the one submission though should point towards the notion that this recruitment is still up for grabs. In some good news for Ohio State, shortly after being offered, Rogers spoke with Bill Kurelic of Bucknuts and made it clear that Ohio State is, “definitely a school he likes” and a visit would be in the works.
It’s early, but you have to think with his past successes on the trail that Brian Hartline will be able to come in and make a serious push for Rogers. Getting him on campus will be a goal from here on, but with key targets such as Zachariah Branch now off the board and committed to USC, Ohio State is looking to make an impact elsewhere as they try to land the first receiver to their 2023 class. That should only be a matter of time.
Frye wasting no time on the trail in his new role
It wasn’t the single factor, but a large reason as to why Ohio State parted ways with Greg Studrawa had to be due to some of the recruiting issues along the offensive line. It was never a terrible situation under coach Stud, but when it’s up against some of the other offensive position recruiting hauls, especially from a national perspective, the offensive line lacked in comparison.
Ryan Day bringing in a familiar face in Frye to lead the way for that unit is a move that brings the question as to whether or not he will be able to compete with the other national powers when it comes to landing the elite national targets. Not having a ton of opportunity to prove that at UCLA, Ohio State is another level as anyone knows, and he’ll have to not only be up to the task, but also get the job done.
Not wasting any time, Frye has already hit the ground running when it comes to recruiting. First off, he has now been in contact with Ohio State’s latest offensive line addition, Carson Hinzman, and Hinzman made it clear he’s excited to meet him officially. A major win already for the Buckeyes to keep all three of their offensive line signees/commits in the fold even with the coaching change, clearly there’s faith by the guys that Frye will transition into the role successfully.
In addition, it was reported on Wednesday by Kurelic again that Frye was also in contact with the nation’s third-ranked offensive tackle in the 2023 class, Samson Okunlola. A 6-foot-5, 295 pound target out of Massachusetts, Samson fits the description as he also grades out as the 36th best player nationally. More importantly though, the conversation between he and coach Frye apparently went well, and he even went as far as to say Frye, “seems like my type of guy.”
Coach Frye will be welcomed in Columbus with open arms if he can get the offensive line even further along in their on-field production, but if he’s also able to hang with the best on the recruiting trail, he’ll be revered for a long time. He’s already begun his work, so time will tell.