Running Downhill

By Johnny Ginter on December 13, 2011 at 2:00p
81 Comments
Come at us.

If you're a regular reader of this site, you've probably been noticing the glut of recruiting news in the past several weeks. In addition to the pleasant gray boxes of success, Alex has been absolutely killing it with his interviews of potential recruits. "Recruits" being a pretty apt term for the future army of hell-beasts that are primed and ready to pillage and burn their way through the Big Ten at the behest of their Dark Lord, Morgoth Bauglir Urban Meyer.

It's a strange feeling watching Ohio State's recruiting approach shift from Hey-Can-I-Maybe-Talk-To-You-About-Ohio-State-Football-For-A-Little-Bit? to RRRAAAAAAAA PLAY FOR US OR SUFFER THE CONSEQUENCES, but this is what works for Urban Meyer: a high octane assault fueled by an infinite supply of Red Bull and a thousand badgering texts aimed at eventually wearing down the various blue chip Laura Winslows of high school football.

There might be something visceral in you that rejects this, something that sees it as an extension of the more unsavory practices of SEC schools or possibly a precursor to oversigning or shady greyshirting. After all, this is the guy whose unending text messaging led the SEC to institute a rule restricting it. So I'd be lying if I said that I didn't have some of the same worries you might be harboring about how Urban goes about his craft. But you know what?

It

freaking

WORKS

There's been a lot of hand wringing about this. Tommy Schutt and Se'Von Pittman decommitting from Penn State and Michigan State, respectively, is frustrating for both of those teams to be sure, and has angered some people who have this preconceived notion of Big Ten recruiting being more formalized and less backstabby than the rest of college football.

Which, of course, is ridiculous. Recruiting is the lifeblood of college football, and it's the very first indicator that separates the haves from the have-nots. Even the most innocent and babyfaced of coaches become cold-blooded Machiavellis when it comes to securing the players they need to sustain their program; pretending that the Big Ten is somehow a magical glen of sharing and caring when it comes to five star quarterbacks is both hilarious and outright wrong.

Another thing that needs to be pointed out is that these recruits usually aren't choosing a college based on the same criteria that most of us would. Most of us who went to Ohio State went for the atmosphere, the sports, and, if you were a gigantic nerd, the history/teaching programs. Pittman and Schutt want to come to Ohio State to play for Urban Meyer, not because they heard about Burritos Noches on North Campus and are pumped about using their swipes for late night Mexican food. Football players commit to a program, not the school, and saying that Ohio State shouldn't be in the running for these guys despite such a huge change in coaching staff comes from a mixture of sour grapes and fear.

And Urban Meyer loves the smell of fear.

Pantoni the Unending

While we have been trying to figure out who is going to be the linebackers coach and who is going to wash socks and who is going to make sure that Meyer's breath is minty fresh in the morning, Urban went ahead and made two of his most important hires as of yet; Brian Voltolini and Mark Pantoni. Voltolini will be the new director of football operations, and Pantoni will be the new director of player personnel. These guys are critical to how Meyer recruits. Pantoni has been the coordinator for Meyer's "Friday Night Lights" program at Florida, a camp that attracts high school players from all around the country, and is considered to be an excellent evaluator of talent. Voltolini will run the more administrative side of things, ensuring that everything is run smoothly. In tandem, they may be the most critical cogs in what may become the one of the best recruiting machines in the country.

...

We used to spend a decent amount of time talking about Evil Jim Tressel, the mythical entity that would emerge once in a blue moon, usually during a Northwestern game, and put up 50 or more points against a team as an apparent punishment for a fluke loss five years prior. But now I'm starting to think that Evil Jim Tressel was never truly evil, at least in the cutthroat sense that we all secretly desired and wrote mash notes to under our covers at night.

Urban Meyer fits that description. He is an unrelenting perpetual recruiting machine that is now in the process of assembling the component parts of what should be a ridiculous football Voltron that will hopefully rule over the rest of the Big Ten for years to come. Soak in the wails and lamentations of the have nots. They will sustain us through the long offseason, as more and more young hearts and minds join the scarlet horde that is OSU football.

81 Comments

Comments

sharkvsghost's picture

"...a thousand badgering texts aimed at eventually wearing down the various blue chip Laura Winslows of high school football."

There could be an entire blog post about what an awesome line that is.

swing hard in case you hit it.

Nappy's picture

My thoughts exactly

Fan of bacon since 1981

Elika's picture

I second that.

How firm thy friendship... OH-I-O!

osukdawg76's picture

Indeed.

 

Also, kudos on the Voltron reference.

I, for one, welcome our new coaching overlords.

 

 

ThirdLegLouie's picture

I don't disagree with anything that was send here. There is a new era in Columbus, and holy hell, is it exciting. 

If you ain't a Silver Bullet, you're a target

 
Big Swede's picture

I do have a little bit of beef with the downplaying of Burrito Noches, but other than that Johny is spot on here.

buckeyechad's picture

I heard Big Hankins committed on the spot after visiting Burrito Noches

slidingscrapes's picture

Ironic, since the filling they put in your burritos only has a little beef as well.

Show them Ohio's here!

Big Swede's picture

I usually went with the carnitas as my meat of choice.

buckeyedude's picture

Burrito Noches....I thought that was another kid that Urban was recruiting.

 

 

flipbuckeye's picture

I've never been to or even heard of Burrito Noches.

Am I old?

chitown buckeye's picture

I must be old as well! Labambas was the place to be when I was there... Burritos as big as your head!

"I'm having a heart attack!"

20sider's picture

Old = Flying Tomato on a sunny fall afternoon and feeling like you finally arrived at college! That and Taco-Chicken-Hut on the stumble home. (aka All-In-One)

GO BUCKS!

chitown buckeye's picture

I was there for only one year of Flying Toms before it started the long list of different names. Freshman year lived in Smith Tower on South Campus and a regular pit-stop on the way home at night was either Cluck-U Chicken or Catfish Biffs!! Awww those were the days....

"I'm having a heart attack!"

NicStar's picture

Let's all just say what we're thinking: If Urbz had been hired in May, these kids would have commited to us then and there and we wouldn't have to "steal" them.  Also, the concept of stealing recruits is asinine. Signing day is in February, and until then all recruits are fair game and can reserve the right to change their mind.

builderofcoalitions's picture

I believe Lewis VanHoose should retain sock-washing (among all equipment-related duties) under the Meyer administration. 

Because we couldn't go for three.

aplumb100's picture

Agreed. It sounds to me like if we play our cards right, we could end up in the top 6th or 7th ranked recruiting class this year. I think we get Diamond, Spence, Dodson, and maybe Caleb or Jones. Add that to the Pittman and Schutt flips, keep Dunn, and OV for Stefon Diggs in January and we could move up AT LEAST 4 or 5 spots and have a MONSTER recruiting class. There's an article on recruiting every Wednesday right? Is the Everett Withers as our new DC reliable? What coaching positions would we then need to fill? Keep up the good work 11W. You make life a lot easier for me, a lonely buckeye in southern California. 

O-H-I-O

Scott's picture

¡Night Burrito!

Class of 2008

btalbert25's picture

As I said earlier today, clearly Michigan was still recruting Kalis and Dunn after they committed to Ohio State.  Had Penn State not run into trouble of their own, there were probably guys they would've tried to coax over as well.  I'm not buying this gentleman's agreement stuff.  I'm not buying the unfair advantage that the coaching staff has by having 2 staffs in place.  Michigan has had this before, Illinois has it right now, and I bet if Penn State had hired a coach by now they'd also have 2 staffs in place.

I'm tired of all the whining from other programs.  You know damn well if Urban had gone to Penn State, they'd be doing the exact same thing right now.  Trying to pick off recruits who are not sure about sticking around because the future looks bleak. 

What we are seeing with recruiting right now, and with renwed excitement around the program are exactly why I said all year Ohio State needed to make sure they brought in a high profile coach to take over the program.  It's working out extremely well so far.  I'm not sure we'd have this much buzz around the program had they stood pat, but replaced the offensive staff. 

awwwwwwop's picture

Penn State was sending out letters to recruits telling them to remember that PSU never has been in trouble.  Image of that letter attached.

"Who cares? Go Bucks." - Aaron Untch

20sider's picture

glass houses and stones... ha, nice job PSU.

GO BUCKS!

BrewstersMillions's picture

My biggest problem is that recruits aren't being shown the joys of a Pepperoni and Banana peppers pie from Adriaticos. Please, current Buckeyes\recent visitors, tell me that place is still there.

Do I come off as arrogant? Shame on me, I was hoping it would more obvious.

slidingscrapes's picture

Adriatico's is definitely still here, don't worry.

Show them Ohio's here!

NicStar's picture

Still there as of '09

Doc's picture

The last time I went passed there(Wiscy game) there was a line out the door.

"Say my name."

Buckeye in Illini country's picture

Adriaticos is still there on 10th

Columbus to Pasadena: 35 hours.  We're on a road trip through the desert looking for strippers and cocaine... and Rose Bowl wins!

BrewstersMillions's picture

Excellent. Thank you.

Do I come off as arrogant? Shame on me, I was hoping it would more obvious.

Doc's picture

West 11th.

"Say my name."

SouthBayBuckeye's picture

that was the only reason I wasn't upset when OSU moved my roommate and i from baker west to mack hall on neil.

Banned from ATO since June 3rd 2PMish PST

Doc's picture

I lived in Siebert and Morrison towers in Dental school.  My favorite place was Meigs, right around the corner on Neil.

"Say my name."

SouthBayBuckeye's picture

They closed that place down a few years back. St Pat's at JR Meigs was always great.

Banned from ATO since June 3rd 2PMish PST

Doc's picture

I know, that used to be my pre-game watering hole.  It wasn't crowded and it felt like OSU to me.  I think Meigs retired and campus development sucked up the property.  I would bet he got a pretty penny for that locale.

 

Now I go to Bdubs and eat chicken wings until I can't stand up.  Oh, yeah and drink beer too.  Sometimes we go to Bernies on High Street.  What a hole that place is.

"Say my name."

SouthBayBuckeye's picture

RIP ORIGINAL BDUBS

Banned from ATO since June 3rd 2PMish PST

BuckeyeSaab's picture

And Larry's too.

I'm sorry for not being sorry.

NC_Buckeye's picture

Larry's -- the grad student hangout by Wendys?

Johnny Ginter's picture

yeeeeeep. i loved that place, now it is dead dead dead

Doc's picture

Isn't it the Donkey Punch or some such thing now?

"Say my name."

Johnny Ginter's picture

the sloppy donkey. i hate everything

SouthBayBuckeye's picture

agreed. so lame. i barely recognize high street anymore. i'm only 28.

Banned from ATO since June 3rd 2PMish PST

BuckeyeTrack10's picture

I 2nd ^^^^^ SOUTHBAY'S comments!

ArTbkward's picture

I third it and I won't turn 28 until next year.

Hendoc's will always hold a special place in my heart.  Free (Gumby's) pizza and $1 drafts on Thursdays till 9.  Unlikely they still do that but it was awesome when I lived on W Patterson.

We should strive to keep thy name, of fair repute and spotless fame...
(Also, I'm not a dude)

flipbuckeye's picture

Fourthed, and I'm 28. I remember when High Street south of East 12th was a barren wasteland.

SouthBayBuckeye's picture

My first apt was on e11th and Indianola when it was a Barren Wasteland. Good times.

Banned from ATO since June 3rd 2PMish PST

NC_Buckeye's picture

Can't remember. Was the original BDub on Frambes or Woodruff? That was a weekly part of my diet from 1986-88. (I lived on 18th.) I can remember hanging out waiting for my order and watching... music videos... on MTV.

I think that location was either the first or second BW3 location. With the other being the one at Kent State. Which became my hangout in grad school.

I can't even eat wings anymore as the grease gives me volcanic heart-burn. Getting old, like Michigan, sucks big time.

Doc's picture

If I ever get to the point where I can no longer eat wings, especially BDubs, please somebody shoot me.

"Say my name."

NC_Buckeye's picture

I promise I will shoot you if that occurs. I hope you won't think bad of me for sticking around a little longer though.

SouthBayBuckeye's picture

Speakign fort myself, I'll be going to Quaker on Polaris Pkwy when I'm home in 8 days :D

Banned from ATO since June 3rd 2PMish PST

Doc's picture

Naah.  Stick around as long as you like.

"Say my name."

btalbert25's picture

Most of the time if I go out to eat at a place like Applebees, Fridays, Local place called Barleycorns I end up eating wings.  I love wings, but wings never have loved me.  Even in my teens.  If I go out with friends I always end up getting them.  However long ago I made my wife ban me from wings when she and I go out.  I was at a bar one day and looked at the menu, a friend was there, I said wings look good but they hurt my stomach.  I tell the bartender I'll have the wings.  She said but you said they hurt your stomach.  I said what the hell are you my wife?  lol.  

SouthBayBuckeye's picture

First official Bdubs, but they had a different place in Kent before then.

Banned from ATO since June 3rd 2PMish PST

TheOtherDJ's picture

It was Woodruff, and I was appalled to see that it was gone when I came back for the Navy game a couple years ago.  Was probably my favorite hangout along with Out-R-Inn on north campus.  Ate mostly at the south BDubs (remember that one? such a pit...), especially during sophomore year.

gravey's picture

We must have been neighbors...for the same period of time..

Arizona_Buckeye's picture

The greatest day since I moved to Arizona (besides attending the 2002 Fiesta Bowl Game) was to see the 1st BW3 open in Chandler, a mere 2 miles from my house!  On opening day, the place was packed with Arizona Buckeyes!!!  MMmmmm wings with Blazin sauce!!!!

The best thing about Pastafarianism? It is not only acceptable, but advisable, to be heavily sauced

NC_Buckeye's picture

Same thing happened to me in Richmond. The guys at work thought I was nuts.

That was right around the time they went corporate (changed name from BW3 to Buffalo Wild Wings) and changed to havings waitresses get orders from your table. (Prior to that all the locations operated like the locations on campus. Place order at counter, find a table, then pickup order when your name is called.)

Needless to say the change did not go smoothly. The first couple of times I drug guys from work to lunch at Bdubs it took 2 to 2 1/2 hours. They finally got the new process down after a month.

btalbert25's picture

There was a bar on High Street(I think) I went to the first time I ever attended a game at the shoe.  It was called 4 Kegs.  I went there for a game back in 2002.  Anyway, after the game we landed there and had a blast.  Is that place still around?  I've tried to find it in my trips back, but I'm just not really familiar with the area.  They had pitchers of this stuff called liquid dope.  I loved that place, but only went that one time.

SouthBayBuckeye's picture

it will always be there, but is now called "th O patio" or something.

 

used to be zigs before it was 4 kegs. probably something else next month.

Banned from ATO since June 3rd 2PMish PST

Doc's picture

WOW!  You guys are young!  I was at the tail end of the golden era of High Street.  My 3rd/4th year was when Pappa Joe's burnt '95/'96.  High before that was insane on a Fri/ Sat night.  The cops used to put a wire up between the telephone polls to keep us out of the street.  Lots of fuzzy memmories.  Now it is all cleaned up and sterile.  I still like going to the Out-r-In.  It is right around the corner from the north High UDF.

"Say my name."

NC_Buckeye's picture

Stop it Doc. You're getting me a little misty by talking about Pappa Joe's. That's basically where my buddies & I hung out (plus any bar where one of our group was working at the time = pitchers under the table).

Good to hear that the Out-R-Inn is still around.

Doc's picture

Sorry NC.

The Out R Inn prolly hasn't changed a thing since the '80's.

"Say my name."

dsbgobux's picture

Oh man....I was at Papa Joe's the night of the fire. It was unreal. Couldn't tell if it was the fog machine or the fire. At least my beer bucket survived (and is in my Buckeye shrine man cave!)

Buckeye in PA purgatory

TheOtherDJ's picture

Wow...you win.  The last stop on my senior crawl was Joe's...June 95.  So wish I had kept one of those buckets.  When I came back the following year to do the crawl with my graduating friends, we bought roses from some random dude and laid them on the vacant lot on our way to the next stop.  Of course we were completely blitzed by that point...

RIP Joes...and Larry's...o, and South Berg too. Fuck Maxwell's though...

TBDBITLinWIScantSON's picture

I was there the night Papas burned down, too. Was celebrating a last night out with the whole crew. We stood in the middle of high st. Holding our pitchers as the firefighters went through the front window with axes. It was unreal watching our favorite spot torn down in front of us. It was arson, in the upstairs of the place next door, if I remember correctly.

WB

Arizona_Buckeye's picture

The Underground, Mean Mr. Mustards, and the Travel Agency were all places where I massacred a billion brain cells!  Yeesh... Drink and Drown night at the Underground was EPIC!!!

The best thing about Pastafarianism? It is not only acceptable, but advisable, to be heavily sauced

Buckeye in Illini country's picture

Close enough for me.  I was a north campus student.

Columbus to Pasadena: 35 hours.  We're on a road trip through the desert looking for strippers and cocaine... and Rose Bowl wins!

Doc's picture

Just bustin' your stones there Illi.

"Say my name."

Seabass1974's picture

Voltron kicked ass!

 

 

 

The harder you work, the harder it is to surrender. - Woody Hayes

Scott K's picture

Defender of the Universe!

"There's a fine line between stupid, and....clever.  David St. Hubbins/Nigel Tufnel

BuckeyeLurker0509's picture

BOO HOO!

We had a 'nice guy' running the show. They called for his ouster. Now we have a combination of Genghis Khan and Tamerlane, plundering the vast sweeping lands of this fine nation, for the bravest of young lads to enlist their services to the Scarlet & Grey

boojtastic's picture

You just stirred some Mongolian (/central Asian) jingoism in my soul, and I'm very uncomfortable about that, seeing as I'm not even remotely Mongolian.

BuckeyeSaab's picture

And he probably pronounces it "jen-GHIS" and not "GANG-is" as well.

I'm sorry for not being sorry.

DrBuckeyePete's picture

Hey guys, 

Just registered! Found this site during the Urban Meyer rumors and haven't left since. 

Does anyone know anything about DORIAL GREEN-BECKHAM? I see that he has an offer from us but there doesn't seem to be much talk about him. While we do have a lot of needs in other areas, we could definitely use some more talent at WR with Posey leaving. 

Ohio State Alum '10 
Go Bucks! 

bassplayer7770's picture

I haven't heard anything about Green-Beckham, but we know Meyer has been talking to Athletes/WRs such as Joel Caleb, Cyrus Jones, and Stefon Diggs.  Caleb has already visited, and Jones is visiting this weekend.

Maestro's picture

He came out with his top 5 last week I believe.  They were Mizzou, Arkansas, Alabama, Texas and another that escapes me.  OSU wasn't on the list though.

vacuuming sucks

Bucks's picture

Welcome ;)

I had thought that Alex/Jeremy made mention of this a while back but not sure.

Buckeyebrowny919's picture

To give anything less than your best, is to sacrifice the gift - Steve Prefontaine

Rooster Buckburn's picture

after reading this I think I'm going to watch "Chronicles of Riddick" again...

tedglover's picture

I mean this as no disrespect towards Jim Tressel, because Tress will go down neck and neck with Woody as the best coach here ever.  Jim Tressel always had good recruiting classes, and even though Tresselball was frustrating for us as fans sometimes, it was damn effective, and I would've given anything to see him here another 20 years winning 80% of our games, dominating Michigan, and winning more bowls than we lost.

That said, every year it seemed that as signing day got closer, there were always 5 or 6 guys that we 'hoped' might sign with OSU, and one or two might come signing day.  We'd still have a good class, top 10-15, but you always walked away from signing day wondering 'what it'.

Now, I 'expect' all BUT one or 2 to sign, and with the Godzilla of recruiters out on the trail with nothing to do but recruit, it's akin to putting Whitney Houston in a crack house, giving her $10,000, and telling her to lock the door when she leaves.

Now, I expect the Conan quote:  "To crush sign your enemies 5 star recruits, see them driven before you from your their program, and to hear the lamentation of their women fanbase.

And this is going to be the norm, not the exception.

There's a new King Kong, and he's in your state, recrootin' your doodz.

Colin's picture

I have it on good authority that the real reason we got Pittman and Schutt is because Ohio is the only state in the midwest with Raising Cane's Chicken Fingers, and there just happens to be one conviniently located on campus. 

BuckeyeGrl5's picture

Brionte Dunn just reconfirmed his commitment.  Best week ever?

"I love football.  I think its the most wonderful game in the world and I despise to lose" - Woody Hayes

Abhi's picture

Recruiting juggernaut!!

nickma71's picture

One of the most straight forward coaches ever, up there with the Vest is Woody Hayes. He didn't cheat like the SEC, but he did what he had to do in recruiting. Or so I have been told. I worked for one of his players in the early 70's. He told kids not coming to OSU to go to Notre Dame. That agrivates me, but not nearly as much as it had to aggrivated Bo. (snicker snicker)