Now into the back half of the season, Ohio State plays game eight tomorrow of the regular season campaign, and while that means some of these contests start to mean a little more, that also means Signing Day is quickly approaching. Only just over a month separates the Buckeyes from the December signing period, and the staff will hope to sign the majority if not all of their current commits during that period.
That said, there’s still a few spots up for grabs. With the hope of certain names attached to those spots, the work isn’t over yet for this current 2023 cycle. The regular season is first and foremost the top priority for this staff, but as we’ve seen over and over, recruiting rarely takes a back seat to anything in Columbus.
Buckeyes continue to trend for top receiver
In yesterday’s edition of State Secrets, 2024 receiver Jeremiah Smith was one of the main topics of discussion. After news came out on Wednesday that Smith would not be visiting Michigan this weekend as originally planned, the Buckeyes love to see their top target at the receiver position staying away from their biggest rival. Fast forward a bit, and Smith is once again seeing his name in the headlines in regards to Ohio State-related news. The fortunate aspect for the Buckeyes, the news continues to be trending in a positive direction.
Similar to his Michigan visit cancellation theme, on Thursday On3 insider EJ Holland, who covers the Wolverines, put his prediction in for Smith’s commitment to end in favor of Ohio State. Maybe the canceled visit has something to do with this prediction or maybe it’s just coincidence, but the Buckeyes continue to be the clear favorite for the nation’s top receiver in the 2024 class.
The No. 2 player nationally per the 247Sports Composite, Smith’s commitment isn’t expected to come in the coming days or possibly even weeks, but as momentum continues to grow in favor of the Buckeyes, it’s not out of the question that this recruitment could in fact end sooner than expected, with Ohio State winning out. With Brian Hartline doing the heavy lifting here for his position group, you have to like his chances of being able to add yet another incredible player to his room as he has done so many times already.
Michigan insider @EJHollandOn3 has placed an expert prediction for Ohio State to land 2024 5-star WR Jeremiah Smith https://t.co/FwCcj1H517 pic.twitter.com/iRa5oV20Uy— On3 Recruits (@On3Recruits) October 27, 2022
Wilson momentum growing
Ohio State also saw their name picked in regard to another On3 recruiting prediction yesterday, but this time for a top 2023 target. Switching sides of the ball and looking at the defensive line, the Buckeyes are focusing on that spot more than any other as they try and close out their 2023 class, with more than just one big time player addition. In fact, the coaching staff is hoping for at least two elite additions to a group who needs to reload their depth. Fortunately, they sit in a great spot for more than just one of their top targets.
This latest update is for Damon Wilson, who was predicted by Ohio State insider Matt Parker to end up with the Buckeyes when he commits to the school of his choice. The 6-foot-4, 230 pound edge rusher has been most closely linked to both Ohio State and Georgia as his recruitment starts to wind down, and while both schools are in a solid spot, it’s the Buckeyes who seem to have the inside track for winning this one in the end.
The No. 19 player nationally per the 247Sports Composite, Wilson is also the second best player at his position and the fifth-ranked player in Florida for 2023. Nothing is set in stone yet, but if momentum continues to trend towards Ohio State, it’s a pretty safe assumption that the Buckeyes, thanks to position coach Larry Johnson, are well on their way to adding another top edge rusher to a defensive line that continues to churn out NFL caliber players.
Ohio State insider @MattParkerLR has placed an expert prediction for the Buckeyes to land 5-star EDGE Damon Wilson https://t.co/Y9nGyJfWon pic.twitter.com/kInPOzDjQT— On3 Recruits (@On3Recruits) October 27, 2022
- Maybe one of the players who goes a bit under the radar in Ohio State’s 2023 class, current tight end commit Jelani Thurman doesn’t always get talked about as much as he should. The sole tight end in the class for the Buckeyes, Thurman is the No. 105 player nationally and the fourth best tight-end in the class according to the 247Sports Composite.
A player who can do it all, Thurman will be welcomed addition to a tight end room that definitely needs to continue adding depth. Fortunately, his ball-catching skills are already off the charts, and he’s shown that time and time again. To see just a glimpse at what Ohio State is getting in Jelani, take a look below.
Ohio State got themselves a good one in TE commit Jelani Thurman (@jelani3345)— The Underclassman Report (@TheUCReport) October 26, 2022
High-level route runner
Speed for his position
The No. 98 player in the ESPN 300 just knows how to get open. Watch the @UANextFootball All-American go to work ⬇️ pic.twitter.com/pUMQy4GUrM