Ohio State will take on Toledo this Saturday evening for the third and final non-conference contest before Big Ten play. Already a quarter into the 2022 campaign, the Buckeyes will be looking to continue improving in every aspect on the field, but have proven they’re more than capable of being one of the top teams on both sides of the ball so far. Not a perfect product just yet, to continue on the trajectory the staff and players want, this matchup against an in-state foe is another chance to really get things clicking.
On the recruiting side of things, this many home games for Ohio State allows the coaching staff ample recruiting opportunities thanks to the game day visit experiences. Several top targets and other prospects have already made their way to campus the past two weeks. But with two more night games ahead, it’s shaping up to be a massive start to the year in terms of how many guys are on the guest lists for each weekend.
The on-field results are priority No. 1, but as this staff and program have proved many times, recruiting is right there as a top priority no matter what.
2024 linebacker heading to Columbus this weekend
Though the Wisconsin game is shaping up to be the next big recruiting weekend for Ohio State, this weekend will also see it’s fair share of recruits roaming the sidelines in pre-game and taking in a Buckeye football game under the lights. As the names on the guest list continue to grow, a new one was added on Wednesday as a South Carolina native and class of 2024 linebacker, Jaidyn Penix, shared that he’d be making the trek to Ohio Stadium.
A 6-foot, 195 pound linebacker, Penix has been very vocal in the past about his interest in Ohio State. After camping for the Buckeyes this summer in June, Penix went as far to say that Ohio State had long been his “dream school” and that the two-day visit was all he expected and more.
An un-ranked prospect currently, Penix has received interest from Michigan State, Ohio State, USF, and several more schools, but does not hold any offers to his name at least right now. However, the coaching staff clearly thinks highly of Penix, as this next visit to Columbus was based on an invite.
Ohio State is certainly doing their best to wrap up the current 2023 class as strongly as possible, and with 2024 being a top priority as well, continuing to evaluate players at any and all positions is definitely under works. Jim Knowles being a linebacker coach by trade means his eyes will be all over that spot specifically, and a solid junior campaign by Penix may be what really gets the ball rolling in his recruitment.
Thanks @CoachKMcFarland @markpantoni @ryandaytime @CoachJimKnowles @OhioStateFB for the game invite this weekend. Looking forward to watching the Buckeyes under the lights #DevelopedHereSC #BIA #2024LB @Kevin_Noon @Birm @alexgleitman @MohrRecruiting @SummervilleFB @RWrightRivals pic.twitter.com/bApEUW8yke— Jaidyn Penix #27 2024 (@JaidynPenix) September 14, 2022
Wisconsin weekend recruiting updates
The Notre Dame home opener was one of the biggest recruiting weekends Ohio State has ever had. With so many top national players on site for the Buckeyes, the coaches were able to keep Ohio State in the thick of it for many of their top targets. Next weekend, Ohio State plays already it’s third night game of the season in just four weeks, and the guest list for when Wisconsin comes to town is growing quickly.
With new names certainly still to come, here’s a just a couple who have already locked down their visit plans:
- Four-star, defensive lineman Kayden McDonald (Suwanee, Georgia/North Gwinnett). The No. 299 player nationally, McDonald is the 44th best defensive lineman in the class and the 27th best player from Georgia per the 247Sports Composite. McDonald has nearly 40 offers to his name and is most closely associated with Clemson on the 247Sports Crystal Ball feature. This visit to Ohio State, though, will be an official visit.
- Four-star receiver Mylan Graham (New Haven, Indiana/New Haven). The No. 69 player nationally, Graham is the ninth ranked receiver in the country, and the top player in Indiana for the 2024 class per the 247Sports Composite. Recently pegged to Ohio State on the Crystal Ball by Director of Recruiting for 247Sports, Steve Wiltfong, this visit is another big step for the Buckeyes in keeping the momentum.
- Four-star defensive back Bryce West (Cleveland, Ohio/Glenville). The No. 37 player nationally, West is also the seventh best player at his position and the top player in Ohio for 2024 per the 247Sports Composite. A major priority in Ohio State’s 2024 class, continued visits to campus for West bode well to the Buckeyes adding him to their haul sooner rather than later.