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Dallan Hayden on Ohio ties, recruiting relationships, pressure of staying in Tennessee

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Dallan Hayden is a fast-rising running back prospect from Tennessee. (Dallan Hayden/Courtesy)

Ohio State Football Recruiting

Dallan Hayden on Ohio ties, recruiting relationships, pressure of staying in Tennessee

Ohio State football recruiting can be a wild ride full of twists and turns as recruits from all over the country maneuver their way to signing day. Lettermen Row is here to help navigate the tumultuous roads by getting to the heart of the matter with the young football players and Ohio State coaches and staff members themselves. This week, we’re joined by Dallan Hayden, a highly-regarded athlete from Memphis, Tennessee.

There are dozens of big-time running back prospects around the country and Ohio State running backs coach Tony Alford is working hard to evaluate as many of them as he can. One player who has caught the attention of Alford and Buckeyes head coach Ryan Day is Memphis (Tenn.) Christian Brothers 4-star Dallan Hayden.

It doesn’t take too much time watching Hayden’s highlights to know why.

The 5-foot-11, 195-pound back has run for almost 1,200 yards and has scored 15 touchdowns in the first five games of his junior season and has seen his recruiting ramp up as a result. A Tennessee legacy — Hayden’s father, Aaron, played for the Volunteers before a four-year NFL stint — has earned 25 scholarship offers already and has been a top target for Ohio State, Notre Dame, Tennessee and others since the recruiting contact period opened up on Sept. 1.

Listed as an athlete according to the 247Sports.com composite rankings, Hayden is a running back all the way in the eyes of Ohio State and has quickly become a priority for the Buckeyes as much for his off-the-field endeavors as his on-field abilities. The No. 10-ranked prospect in Tennessee has raised more than $18,000 this season for Coaching for Literacy,

“Charity events, giving back to the community, that’s my biggest why,” Hayden said in August. “Giving back is just so important because you should just put yourself in that person’s life and realize that everybody doesn’t have the resources to receive help.”

The Buckeyes are feeling good about Dallan Hayden, but how is he feeling about Ohio State? Has he heard much from Bennett Christian, another Tennessee legacy that Buckeyes targeted early? What is his plan for the rest of his recruiting process? The talented tailback joins Birminology to talk about those things are more.


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.