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Scarlet Sunrise: Gi’Bran Payne recruitment heats up with narrowed list

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Ohio State is remaining a player in big-time recruitments. (Birm/Lettermen Row)

Scarlet Sunrise

Scarlet Sunrise: Gi’Bran Payne recruitment heats up with narrowed list

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.

Gi’Bran Payne recruitment heats up with narrowed list

Ohio State has put an emphasis on recruiting in-state talent since Ryan Day took over as the head coach, and the class of 2022 has some talented prospects in the Buckeyes backyard.

One of them is a young superstar running back, Cincinnati La Salle High School’s Gi’Bran Payne, who left the Buckeyes off his top 10 list he released over the weekend. Ohio State has yet to offer the rising junior back, but the Buckeyes have shown plenty of interest in him and remain a player in his recruitment despite the lack of an offer.

Payne’s top 10 included Alabama, Georgia Tech, Kentucky Louisville, Michigan, Northwestern, Penn State, Pittsburgh, West Virginia and Wisconsin. But if the Buckeyes make an offer and continue to recruit the talented tailback, he might have to make room for the in-state national power in Columbus.

BuckIQs break down Ohio State tight ends

Ohio State needs its tight ends to function on offense. Yes, the Buckeyes rarely throw to the bigger pass-catchers on the ends, but those tight ends are reliable when targeted and a huge piece to the run-blocking Ohio State loves to pound defenses with. The tight ends are important for Ryan Day and the Buckeyes.

How could Luke Farrell help expand the Ohio State offense as a passing-game target? Why is there so much excitement around Ohio State about the potential for Jeremy Ruckert? What has he proven to the Buckeyes after two years in the program? What makes Cade Stover a good fit for Ohio State on offense? What can the four-star prospect Joe Royer become at tight end for the Buckeyes?

To end Tight Ends week at Lettermen Row, our staff looked back at all the recent BuckIQ episodes to get a feel for what all Ohio State has to work with this season.

Roll the tape!

WATCH: BuckIQs break down Ohio State tight ends

Buckeyes tight end depth extends beyond stars

Ohio State has two stars at tight end in Jeremy Ruckert and Luke Farrell. But the depth of the unit extends far beyond those two tight ends. Jake Hausmann, a former four-star recruit, and walk-on Mitch Rossi are both trying to find any way they can to earn playing time and have an impact on the Buckeyes next national title chase. What kind of role can they expect? Lettermen Row has a story:

Hausmann has two career catches — one for a touchdown — and was on the field for run-blocking situations last season. Rossi has one catch in his Ohio State career. All three of those combined receptions came last year when the Buckeyes were dominating opponents and the backups were in the game. And the two tight ends in front of them on the depth chart are returning for another season of production.

Those circumstances won’t make it easy to find the field. Not even for a former four-star recruit or a walk-on. The opportunities are limited, especially with only one ball to go around.

For more on how Hausmann and Rossi can make an impact, click here.

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Spencer Holbrook

Spencer Holbrook covers Ohio State football and basketball for Lettermen Row. A graduate of Ohio University's Scripps School of Journalism, he's in his second year covering the Buckeyes. He was previously the sports editor at Ohio's student newspaper, The Post, where he covered Ohio University football and men's basketball.