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Dotting the ‘Eyes: Ohio State fighting for Jordan Battle, local prospect Dezman Cooper waiting for shot

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Holding on to Jordan Battle's commitment could be a fight for the Buckeyes. (via

Ohio State Football Recruiting

Dotting the ‘Eyes: Ohio State fighting for Jordan Battle, local prospect Dezman Cooper waiting for shot

Alabama commit Jayson Jones is serious about Ohio State

There are concerns in the 2020 class as well for Ohio State, but this week’s Meyer decision will likely have less of an effect on that class than the current one. Fans around the country don’t need to look far to see how Lincoln Riley took over for Bob Stoops and has been an absolute terror on the recruiting trail as an example of what the Buckeyes could do if this year’s on-field results are as good as expected, no matter who the head coach is.

Even the untouchable Alabama could have reason to worry about the Buckeyes in 2020, if you take Crimson Tide commit Jayson Jones at his word. He’s the country’s third-ranked defensive tackle in that class and, despite hailing from in Calera, Ala., he says he’s grown up “loving” Ohio State.

“It’s a great school, with a great program and great history,” Jones said . “I’ve always loved the team in general. I grew up watching them.”

As mentioned, the 6-foot-5, 322-pound Jones is already committed to Alabama. That fact, and his roots in SEC country, are two good reasons why Ohio State has not even reached out to him at this point. The Buckeyes don’t really spend much time trying to recruit in SEC strongholds like Louisiana and Alabama because usually those endeavors are fruitless. Jones doesn’t come off as a guy feigning interest, but there’s no doubt it’d be a hard pull for Larry Johnson and Ohio State.

Ohio State legacy Dezman Cooper waits for his shot

The Buckeyes have three linebackers currently committed in 2019, and that’s one of the reasons why Reynoldsburg’s Dezman Cooper, the nephew of former Ohio State standout Joe Cooper, hasn’t gotten a more thorough look from his local school.

Why the 6-foot-2, 225-pound Cooper, after reportedly running a 4.67 the last time he was recorded in the 40-yard dash, has only one total scholarship offer from Miami of Ohio? That’s harder to figure out.

“I know I can play at the next level,” Cooper told Lettermen Row. “I play hard and fast on the field. Some schools are calling me a ‘tweener. I am just going to control what I can control and play.”

A number of schools have told Cooper, the country’s 140th-ranked outside linebacker prospect, that he’s still on their board and being evaluated.

“An Akron coach kept me after a camp because I tested higher than the other linebackers,” he said. “But he told me and my dad I was to big too play linebacker there and not heavy enough for defensive end. They are just telling me I’m still on the board and they are watching me. That’s what my coach told me they told him too.”

Recruiting can be a frustrating game, even when you’re a good kid off the field, get good grades and put good film together. It’s nearly impossible at times to know what each program is looking for. Most of the time, it’s a player’s junior season that sets the tone in his recruitment, but for this Ohio State legacy, it’s going to come down to his senior year.

New Ohio State offer out in Class of 2020

Ohio State may be waiting for news about its head coach but that doesn’t mean the Buckeyes are waiting quietly. On Sunday, a new 2020 scholarship offer went out to Apopka (Fla.) 4-star defensive back Jecoryan Davis-Hamilton.

Currently unranked, Davis is a 6-foot-1, 160-pound cornerback who has offers from Cincinnati, Miami, Virginia and Syracuse. Davis-Hamilton is a two-way star for Apopka.

Ohio State can’t sit idly by and do nothing, right?

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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 and and has been covering the Buckeyes for seven years.