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Ohio State Recruiting Question of the Day
It’s Taco Tuesday.
There’s nothing else to that, I just wanted to remind you all of it so that you’re able to find some way to incorporate a taco into your life today.
Anyway, we’re talking about recruiting here like always, and this afternoon we’re going to try and reset the board a bit for Ohio State in the Class of 2019 as requested in today’s Recruiting Question of the Day.
I feel like we need a recruiting reset. What are the top 3 position priorities to fill out the 19 class?
— Walking Poison Nut (@BrutusBuckeye13) September 10, 2018
As of today, Ohio State has 14 commitments and is the Big Ten’s second-ranked 2019 class behind Michigan. The Wolverines just added two more key pieces in the last two days to bring its total number of verbals to 22. The Buckeyes have not added a 2019 commitment since July 27 when Cormontae Hamilton picked Ohio State, and the most recent recruiting movement they’ve experienced was a decommitment by Kane Patterson, a 4-star linebacker from Nashville.
In short, things haven’t been going great for Ohio State when it comes to the Class of 2019, which is a pretty below-average class across the board in my opinion.
Still, things will get better. They also must get better if the Buckeyes want to overtake the Wolverines and once again finish with the conference’s best group, as they’ve done every year since 2011. What has to happen? Where are the biggest holes?
In my opinion, there are three areas of major concern for Ohio State in the Class of 2019 that must be addressed.
Ohio State needs to land Zach Harrison
This is a no-brainer, because there’s nothing more important for the Buckeyes than landing 5-star defensive end Zach Harrison, period. Harrison has been the top target for Ohio State for years and is a player that lives 15 minutes from campus. There isn’t a recruiting analyst alive that expected this recruitment to be in question at this time last year, yet here we are as the Buckeyes are forced to keep fighting off two of their biggest in-conference rivals: Michigan and Penn State.
I realize that one recruit never makes or breaks a class, but it’s hard to see any way Ohio State’s 2019 class is an overall success if Harrison ends up anywhere else. There isn’t a single box the Buckeyes don’t check for him. But to this point, there’s no sign of a pending commitment.
So, in the spirit of answering the actual question, we’ll say defensive line is the top priority, even with the emergence of young guys like Tyreke Smith, Taron Vincent, Tommy Togiai and Tyler Friday. There is only one 2019 commit along the defensive line, and there needs to be another defensive end. Somewhere, somehow, the Buckeyes need to find a defensive tackle in this group as well.
Is there an offensive tackle out there for Ohio State?
Ohio State’s first two commitments in 2019 were from players listed as offensive tackles, Doug Nester and Ryan Jacoby. But with Nester’s future now appearing to be at guard, it’s pretty obvious that another offensive tackle has become a major priority for the Buckeyes.
They’re trailing for 5-star Darnell Wright, though, after some felt Ohio State was the team to beat early. Notre Dame and Stanford are duking it out for Walter Rouse, who became a guy the Buckeyes really liked. They never took a legit swing at players like Andrew Kristofic or John Olmstead and couldn’t land Minnesota’s Quinn Carroll. All three of those guys are heading to Notre Dame. For whatever reason, they’ve not been able to make a push for Illinois’ Trevor Keegan, either. Dayton’s Jonathan Allen is way too much of a project to really consider in the Class of 2019, and there aren’t any real options left out for the Buckeyes.
Heck, Nick Samac, a teammate of Potter’s and Jacoby’s at Mentor High School, is committed to Michigan State, and he is completely stonewalling Ohio State’s overtures.
The need for a tackle is real, but the challenges in finding another one may be too tough to overcome.
Can Brian Hartline reel in top WR targets for Ohio State?
Ohio State has one commitment from a wide receiver, and he’s a darn good one. That is Texas 5-star talent Garrett Wilson, the country’s No. 2-ranked wideout and 14th-ranked overall prospect.
But the Buckeyes are going to lose Johnnie Dixon, Parris Campbell and Terry McLaurin after this year. They’ll likely lose K.J. Hill as well.
They need to bring in a couple more stars at the wide receiver position, and the two guys that are at the top of the list right now are St. Louis 4-star Jameson Williams and Kentucky 4-star athlete Wandale Robinson.
Bringing in that pair is vital to the overall success of the 2019 class. If they can do that, anything else is gravy for Brian Hartline and the recruiting staff.
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Birm is Lettermen Row's Director of Recruiting and the site's primary Ohio State sports photographer. A Toledo, Ohio native, Jeremy has been in similar roles for elevenwarriors.com and Landof10.com and has been covering the Buckeyes for seven years.