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Ohio State leaves positive impression on four-star DL target from Georgia

The Buckeyes continue to prioritize a top defensive line target as an upcoming decision looms.

Kayden McDonald

As decision day inches closer for one of defensive line coach Larry Johnson’s top remaining targets, the Buckeyes made another big impression on the blue-chip standout with a recent visit to his school. Plus, a future Ohio State pass-catcher that has been committed to the program since June revealed his official visit date to Columbus on Tuesday.

Ohio State “checks another box” for McDonald

We are less than two weeks away from finding out the collegiate home for 2023 four-star defensive lineman Kayden McDonald of North Gwinnett (GA). The 6-foot-3, 310-pounder is currently set to announce his commitment on Oct. 31, and the Buckeyes are hoping to leave no stone unturned in their pursuit.

This past Friday, Ohio State head coach Ryan Day and cornerbacks coach Tim Walton made their way to Suwannee, Georgia to stop by the high school that McDonald attends to see the peach state prospect. The check-in from Day and Walton left a positive impression on McDonald, and he didn’t hold back when speaking about the visit.

“The head coach of the No. 2 team in the country came to see me,” McDonald told Garrick Hodge of Eleven Warriors. “It checks another box for Ohio State. It means a lot to me.”

As the Buckeyes look to outlast the other finalists in the recruitment of McDonald which includes Clemson, Florida, Michigan, and Oklahoma, this is definitely a positive development for Ohio State. But just how much it impacts the decision of McDonald is yet to be seen. For now, the 247Sports Crystal Ball has the Tigers as the prohibitive favorite to land the Georgia standout, but those predictions were made a couple of months ago.

Regardless, whichever of the five programs that is fortunate enough to land McDonald will be welcoming a massive talent to their respective defensive line room. McDonald is currently penciled in as a top 250 prospect in the class. The Suwannee native also ranks as the 33rd highest graded defensive lineman and the No. 22 overall player from the talented state of Georgia.

Rogers sets Buckeye official visit

Back in June of this year, Ohio State wide receiver coach Brian Hartline worked a little bit of his recruiting magic by securing a commitment from 2023 four-star wide receiver Noah Rogers of Rolesville (NC) less than a week after he stepped on campus.

Fast forward to Tuesday, and we learned that the blue-chip pass-catcher will be back in Columbus sooner rather than later. According to his 247Sports profile, Rogers will be back at Ohio State for an official visit with the program the weekend of Nov. 25 — Michigan week.

When the visit is happening should come as no surprise, as the weekend will be a major recruiting one for the Buckeyes which their arch-rivals in town. But the fact that Ohio State will have Rogers back on campus again, with attempts from NC State and North Carolina to flip his pledge, is the important aspect of the scheduled visit.

That is not to say that the commitment of the No. 47 overall player in the class was or should be in question. But sometimes prospects need to be reminded of why they initially made the decision that they did, and him being back in Columbus in front of what will surely be a tremendous atmosphere and around a host of future teammates might just be the reminder that Rogers, the seventh highest graded receiver, needs on why he wanted to be a Buckeye from the get go.

Quick Hits

  • According to Kristian Dyer of Rutgers Wire, Ohio State will receive a visit this weekend from 2024 four-star safety Vaboue Toure of Irvington (NJ) for the contest against Iowa. The Buckeyes offered the 6-foot-1, 185-pounder just nine days ago.
  • 2023 Ohio State four-star running back commit Mark Fletcher of American Heritage (FL) will be honored as an All-American later today. The No. 9 running back will take part in the contest that features “the nation’s top 100 high school football players,” according to the website.
  • Buckeye target and 2024 four-star running back Stacy Gage of Wharton (FL) took to Twitter on Tuesday that his “recruitment is still 100% open.” With Alabama, Ohio State, Oklahoma, USC, and many more in pursuit, the Tampa native also noted that his top schools will be revealed soon.