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Jacolbe Cowan wants return visit, Florida lineman gets Ohio State offer

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Jacolbe Cowan (far right) was last at Ohio State in November as the Buckeyes hosted Michigan. (Birm/Lettermen Row)

Ohio State Football Recruiting

Jacolbe Cowan wants return visit, Florida lineman gets Ohio State offer

Stay in touch or be left out because Ohio State recruiting is a 24-hour, seven-day-per-week obsession. What’s the latest news as the Buckeyes build for the future? Get that and more Sunday through Thursday on Lettermen Row. Thursday’s column talks Jacolbe Cowan and his Ohio State interest, the Buckeyes offering a new young offensive lineman and more.

Jacolbe Cowan wants return visit to Ohio State

Ohio State defensive line coach Larry Johnson was in North Carolina on Thursday morning, making a stop in Charlotte to see 4-star defensive end Jacolbe Cowan, among others.

Cowan, 6-foot-5 and 265-pounds, is the country’s 10th-ranked strong-side defensive end and a player who visited Ohio State twice in the last year, including in November for the Michigan game. Thursday’s meeting was another way for Johnson to remind Cowan that the Buckeyes are watching and hoping to get him back into Columbus in the near future.

“He can’t say much, so we only spoke for a few moments,” Cowan said. “He basically just told me to continue to grind and handle business on and off the field like I’ve been doing, and he also said that he couldn’t wait for me and the family to get back to Columbus.”

There is no date yet for that trip, but Cowan is getting closer to sorting it out.

“I still have to finalize things with the staff,” Cowan said. “But possibly the end of this month or a weekend in June.”

Ohio State keeping tabs on Cincinnati tight end Joe Royer

The Buckeyes are looking for a pair of tight ends in the Class of 2020, and there are a number of really good prospects within an hour or two of Columbus, including Cincinnati Elder 3-star standout Joe Royer.

Royer, 6-foot-2 and 220-pounds, has picked up a couple of big offers this week from Big Ten rivals, including Nebraska and Michigan. The Queen City star visited Ohio State toward the end of spring camp and told Lettermen Row he’s been staying in regular contact with Kevin Wilson for a while now.

“I text Coach Wilson and [Ryan] Day almost every day,” Royer said. “We talk on the phone with them about twice a week. They have been saying that I am the best receiving threat at tight end out of all the ones they are recruiting, but Coach Wilson wants to make sure I can be a blocker as well.”

In order to establish that confidence, Royer will likely be asked to come camp at Ohio State in June to show off his physicality. The chance to earn an offer is something he’s dreamt of his whole life, growing up rooting for the Buckeyes and — like a lot of Cincinnati prospects — Notre Dame.

“It’s a childhood dream, playing football for Ohio State” he said. “My grandpa played tight end and defensive end for Notre Dame back in the day, so I grew up a fan of Notre Dame as well. But I loved it [at Ohio State] — I got to see everything the Buckeyes have to offer.

“The facilities, the campus — everything. It was really great.”

If the Buckeyes want to give Royer a chance to live out that childhood dream, they’ll need to be ready to move quickly come June.

Ohio State offers Julian Armella

The Buckeyes love St. Thomas Aquinas High School in Fort Lauderdale and have offered dozens of players from the program in the last handful of years. This week, Brian Hartline and Greg Studrawa were in the school and offered 2022 lineman Julian Armella, a 6-foot-6, 295-pound freshman.

Yes, you read that correctly. Armella is a freshman and he now has 13 early offers from some of the country’s biggest college football programs.

“The offer from Ohio State itself feels surreal,” Armellla told Lettermen Row. “I grew up watching big schools like Florida, Florida State and Ohio State. And now I’m blessed to have an opportunity to go to all these amazing schools.”

Obviously there’s a long way to go here, but the Buckeyes have a longstanding legacy at St. Thomas Aquinas and it will keep them in the conversation for rising stars like Armella over the next few years.

New Jersey defensive end Amin Vanover releases top 10

Ohio State remains in the mix for New Jersey defensive end Amin Vanover, the country’s 17th-ranked strongside defensive end and a teammate of Buckeyes commit Luke Wypler at St. Joseph Regional High School in Montvale (N.J.)

Vanover was offered by the Buckeyes in early February, and the 6-foot-4, 260-pound prospect has 20 offers to his name.

The Buckeyes have not yet hosted Vanover for a visit, so it’s going to take that to happen before this recruitment becomes really worth watching for Ohio State.

Need more Ohio State recruiting #Stuff? Check out the Lettermen Row forums and let us know what’s on your mind. Don’t forget to sign up for the tri-weekly recruiting newsletter, just in case there’s anything you’ve missed during the week.


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 and and has been covering the Buckeyes for seven years.