After a long hiatus, it’s time to jump back in with some recruiting talk.
Adverse circumstances surrounding the program have obviously impacted recruiting for months, but the 2012 class still has an opportunity to be pretty darn good.
The key will be finishing strong, and the Buckeyes look to be in a great position to do just that.
The biggest concern, as it has been for months, continues to be along the offensive line. Regardless of how the ’12 class finishes, the depth issues there may not be resolved until the ink is dry on the ’13 class.
Before I get too far ahead of myself, here is a look at how the 2012 class will wind down. Read More
In the aftermath of Jim Tressel’s resignation, there are many important things to think about as Ohio State moves forward: was Tressel treated fairly? what will his legacy be? did he really lose control of the program? will any new violations be uncovered? who will be the next long-term coach? and so on.
On top of everything else, another thing to think about is the impact that Tressel’s resignation will have on the 2012 recruiting class. If you have been following along at all this year, you know that the 2012 class is the most talented group of high school seniors in Ohio since at least 2002. In that sense, Tressel’s resignation could not have come at a worse time.
Opposing schools have already been cashing in on Ohio State’s inability to offer all of the talented in-state players, and now they will be looking to really open the floodgates by sniping the players Ohio State has offered in the midst of the turmoil (Tom Strobel became the first casualty on that front last week).
Fortunately, the new man in charge, Luke Fickell, provides some continuity and happens to be the most dynamic and effective recruiter on the staff. He has successfully locked down all 8 of Ohio State’s previous commitments (it wasn’t a sure thing the entire time either), and he will obviously be putting a lot of effort into finishing the job with many other targeted players in the class.
One thing that I think benefits Ohio State greatly here was Tressel’s recruiting style. He sold kids on falling in love with being a Buckeye, and being a Buckeye transcends whoever happens to be the current head coach. That style and emphasis was a point that Fickell hammered home at his press conference yesterday.
Still, it would be naive to think that Tressel’s resignation will have no negative impact on recruiting. Read More
Today was the introductory senior camp of the Luke Fickell regime, and coach wasted no time placing his stamp on the 2012 class by offering and receiving a verbal commitment from Steubenville DB Najee Murray.
Najee was “on the radar” as being someone the staff wanted to get a closer look at during the clinic, and didn’t disappoint- he was named MVP for the defensive backs.
A 5’11″, 175 lb athlete, he has been timed at 4.4 speed, and carries a 3.3 GPA for the Big Red. He currently only held offers from Indiana and Mid America Conference schools, although it would be no surprise to see this change as the summer camp circuit and his senior year progresses. However, given the speed of his commitment, it’s unlikely that he’d step away from his verbal commitment. He’s a Buckeye heart and soul.
While some would look at Kyle Kalis’ re-commitment as the first “score” of Fickell’s career, but it’s great to see that he’s able to connect with Ohio student athletes and welcome them to the fold.
Check out his highlight film after the break.