Good morning, Ohio State fans, and welcome to the Scarlet Sunrise. Football will always be our focus, but every day we’ll cover news, notes and analysis from across Buckeyes sports. Join us each morning to get caught up on everything you missed in the world of Ohio State football, recruiting, basketball and more.
Two former Buckeyes stars move on Super Bowl
Two former Ohio State superstars are heading to the Super Bowl to face each other.
Conference championship weekend ended with the San Francisco 49ers beating the Green Bay Packers in the NFC title game, meaning rookie defensive end Nick Bosa will make his first appearance in the Super Bowl. The 49ers dominated the Packers on their way to a 37-20 win, and Bosa was a big part of it. Bosa finished the game with four tackles and a sack.
He and the 49ers will face former Ohio State linebacker Darron Lee and the Kansas City Chiefs after they defeated Mike Vrabel, Kerry Coombs and the Tennessee Titans in the AFC Championship Game. Lee was a healthy scratch for the Chiefs, but could suit up in the Super Bowl.
Now, Lee and Bosa will be on the same field in Super Bowl LIV from Miami, which will kickoff on Feb. 2.
Ryan Day visits Cameron Martinez
Ohio State is nearly done with its 2020 recruiting class. The only missing piece the Buckeyes are still recruiting is 4-star athlete Cameron Martinez, a dynamic playmaker from Muskegon, Michigan.
Martinez was originally scheduled to sign with the Buckeyes last month, but Jeff Hafley’s departure put Martinez in a tough spot. Ohio State is now fighting to keep Martinez in the class despite not having an official word on who its defensive backs coach will be next year.
Ryan Day and assistant coach Matt Barnes were in Muskegon over the weekend to sit down with Martinez. Following that in-home visit, Lettermen Row recruiting expert Birm spoke with Martinez about how he feels moving forward:
Day was in Muskegon until roughly 10 p.m. and hung out at the young prospects home, beating him in Connect 4 and then watching him play basketball, sharing the stands with coaches from Notre Dame and Northwestern, who were also in town recruiting Martinez.
There were no ultimatums or promises made by either side on Friday, but the message from Ohio State is the same as it’s always been. Martinez is a priority for the Buckeyes, and the staff in Columbus values him in a way that no other staff has for much of the last year. Yes, Ohio State believes Martinez is a special offensive player. But the belief remains that he can be a difference-maker on defense, and Day understands his reluctance to entirely shut down his recruitment again until a new defensive backs coach is named.
But, as it was with Paris Johnson last year, backing Martinez into a corner is not and has not been a part of the plan for Ohio State. Day has been consistent, reliable and understanding about why Martinez is reluctant to completely close things down until he knows who his future position could be and actually gets to meet him. That will happen as soon as possible, and that’s the message from Day to Martinez.
There’s plenty more to break down when it comes to Martinez and Ohio State. Birm has the full story and more from the recruiting trail here.
Ohio State basketball continues to struggle
Just a few short weeks ago, the Buckeyes were a top-five team in the country and put up more than 100 points on Penn State in a blowout win.
But in the Bryce Jordan Center on Saturday afternoon, Ohio State didn’t look like a ranked team. The Buckeyes started slowly and couldn’t get on track in their 90-76 loss, their fifth loss in the last six games and fifth Big Ten loss of the season.
Ohio State seemed to be poised for a deep Big Ten Tournament and NCAA Tournament run after a brilliant first two months of the season. The Buckeyes have a lot to sort through following another disappointing loss.
Download Lettermen Row’s free app
Want an easier way to get free premium content from Lettermen Row?
The Lettermen Row app is here! Get all of the Ohio State news, analysis, videos and everything else you’ve come to expect from us in one free, convenient spot. It’s now available in both the App Store and Google Play — check it out!
The Lettermen Row app can be found for free here:
Sign up for the Scarlet Sunrise newsletter
If you enjoy the Scarlet Sunrise posts, please consider having our newsletter delivered to your inbox every weekday morning. Click here to sign up!