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Ohio State: National Signing Day primer as Buckeyes aim for strong finish

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Ryan Day is looking to put the finishing touches on his first recruiting class at Ohio State. (Joseph Maiorana/USA TODAY Sports)

Ohio State Football

Ohio State: National Signing Day primer as Buckeyes aim for strong finish

COLUMBUS — National Signing Day 2019 is here for Ohio State — again.

Ryan Day and the Buckeyes are hours away from wrapping up their signing class, capping a wild cycle that has proven at times to be both difficult and productive. Though the majority of the program’s top targets are signed, sealed and delivered thanks to the early signing period in December, Ohio State still finds itself waiting on signatures from three of the country’s best offensive lineman.

The wait will end on Wednesday.

By the end of the day, Ohio State will have a completed its new group of freshmen. The only question now is which players will join the fray.

Here is what Lettermen Row expects to happen with the three offensive linemen Ohio State is waiting on to set the table for a pivotal date on the calendar in Ryan Day’s first year in charge.

ohio state doug nester-doug nester buckeyes-doug nester football-doug nester recruit

Doug Nester appears to be flipping away from Ohio State. (Birm/Lettermen Row)

Doug Nester will spurn Ohio State, sign with Virginia Tech

The recruitment of Doug Nester has been a wild one in the last few months. The long-time Ohio State commitment decided to take official visits to two other schools after opting against signing in December. Nester had been planning to enroll early with the Buckeyes for much of the last year. Now it appears the country’s eighth-ranked offensive guard will be heading somewhere other than Columbus at his signing ceremony.

Nester, who took official visits with the Buckeyes in both December and January, is set to make his decision between Ohio State, Penn State and Virginia Tech during a signing day ceremony at Spring Valley (Huntington, W. Va) High School at 5:30 p.m. However, that seems a bit anticlimactic now as reports have hit the local news in West Virginia that after  his official visit to Virginia Tech over the weekend, this recruitment is finished: Nester will sign with Virginia Tech.

This is a big loss for Ohio State, but Ryan Day — as Urban Meyer did before him — seems like the type of guy to land on his feet.

Final call: Virginia Tech.

Enokk Vimahi will surprise everyone and pick Ohio State over USC

One month ago, Ohio State was nowhere to be seen in this recruitment. But after an impressive push by Ryan Day and the Buckeyes, it is definitely a major factor now.

The Hawaii lineman, a 4-star prospect ranked as the county’s seventh-ranked guard, had long been considered a USC lean. But the Buckeyes changed his recruitment with an early January offer. Vimahi pushed back a planned mid-January commitment to take an official visit to Ohio State over the weekend of Jan. 25. Since that trip took place, optimism has been high in Columbus that the Buckeyes could’ve done enough to land him.

Final Call: Ohio State.

Dawand Jones-Ohio State-Buckeyes-Ohio State football

Dawand Jones was a big emphasis for Ohio State down the stretch. (Dawand Jones/Twitter)

Dawand Jones will choose Ohio State over Penn State — but it’s close

There are few offensive linemen in the country who have gained the recruiting momentum that Dawand Jones has since November.

A 6-foot-8, 360-pound tackle from Indianapolis, Jones took his first visit to Ohio State that month and was both located and recruited by Ohio State offensive coordinator Kevin Wilson. Wilson got the Buckeyes in the door for the talent two-sport athlete but it was Ryan Day who kicked it open in December and January.

As Wilson and Day forged a strong relationship with the 3-star prospect from Ben Davis High School the Buckeyes pushed into the lead for his signature. Indiana’s 13th-ranked prospect took an official visit at Ohio State in January and it seemed a commitment was imminent, but a late push by the Penn State coaching staff made this interesting in the last 10 days.

When all is said and done though, the need for tackles in Columbus, along with the relationship he has with Day, should be enough for Ohio State to secure his pledge Wednesday night.

Final Call: Ohio State.

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Can we land a new O-Line coach?


You can’t win them all but winning those two of three is really good news if it does indeed happen. I’m most excited about Dawand Jones after seeing his tape earlier this month. He looks to be a man among boys and after a couple of years under Marotti along with advanced coaching experience, he will be a force.


any word on grad transfers / portal transfers that we’re interested in and could use?


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.

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