There’s essentially nowhere to go but up when it comes to Ohio State’s newest holiday commitments trying to eclipse the careers of their predecessors.
A handful of Ohio State commitments in recent years have come the day before or after a major holiday. In 2010, Brian Bobek and Chase Farris committed the day before St. Patrick’s Day. Two years later, future All-American and Rimington Trophy winner Billy Price committed the day before Valentine’s Day. Also in 2012, Michael Thomas committed the day before Halloween. In 2016, Jahsen Wint committed one day after New Year’s Day.
But less rare has been commitments that actually took place on major holidays (for which recruiting writers are surely thankful). The only two such pledges since Urban Meyer took over at Ohio State combined to play in just a handful of games and collectively lasted one year.
Here’s a look at those two players and the three 2020 commits who have also announced their pledge on a major holiday.
Marcelys Jones — Dec. 25, 2012
Cleveland Glenville 3-star offensive lineman Marcelys Jones took everyone by surprise when he posted to Twitter on Christmas Day 2012 that he’d verbally committed to Ohio State.
“It feels like home,” Jones told ESPN. “I talked to my coaching staff this morning and they felt like it would be the right place. I felt like it would be the right place. My grandparents felt like it would be the right place as well, so I committed. I had to follow my gut. I wanted to make the right decision. I was anxious. I could have waited, but my grandparents love the program, the coaches love the program. It’s where I want to be.”
Jones left after one year in which he played in a handful of games during mop up duty. His transfer to Kentucky was short-lived, though, as Jones was dismissed from the team less than two months after his arrival and never suited up for the Wildcats. He never made his way back to Division I football.
Jake Moretti — July 4, 2015
Jake Moretti’s commitment was also a surprise when it came the night of July 4, 2015, and supplied some extra fireworks for the Buckeyes.
“Committing that night was just kind of a possibility,” Moretti told Birm around a month after his commitment. “It just kind of ended up happening. It’s a huge weight off my shoulders.
“I was trying to stay level-headed and thinking of all the pros and cons but it just felt right walking away from the campus. I wasn’t too sure what it’d be like out there, but the city of Columbus was pretty unique with all the support. It just felt like a great overall fit. It wasn’t just one thing that stood out.”
A year later, though, tragedy struck when the 4-star offensive tackle from Arvada (Colo.) Pomona shredded his knee at an Ohio State recruiting camp. That proved to be the beginning of the end, and Moretti ultimately flipped to Colorado instead of signing with the Buckeyes.
Gee Scott — Dec. 25, 2018
Sammamish (Wash.) Eastside Catholic 4-star wide receiver Gee Scott gave Buckeye fans a present when he committed to the Buckeyes last Christmas Day.
“Every school has so many great things to offer, and I found myself scared that I wasn’t going to be able to make a decision I was confident in,” Scott told Lettermen Row. “But when I went down to Ohio State, it was just clear to me. It was clear to me that’s where I wanted to be. It sparked right away. There was no confusion, and I knew exactly what I wanted.”
Josh Fryar and Cam Martinez — July 4, 2019
Buckeyes head coach Ryan Day added two more players on July 4, landing 3-star center Josh Fryar and 3-star athlete Cam Martinez. Both players are versatile, with Fryar able to play any of the three spots on the inside of the offensive line and Martinez capable of lining up at either wide receiver or cornerback.
“I think they recruited me harder than anybody else, having multiple coaches reaching out to me and showing how interested they are,” Martinez said. “And then after coming back from the official visit and processing it all, it made it a no-brainer. That’s where my gut was telling me to go.”