Catching Up with Eli Woodard: Committed

By Alex on February 16, 2012 at 4:35p
Woodard looks good in those colorsWoodard is finally a Buckeye

As we told you earlier, Eli Woodard became the fourth member of Ohio State's recruiting class of 2013, joining ATH Jalin Marshall, DB Cam Burrows, and DL Billy Price.

For those who are newer to this site, Woodard is no stranger. We at 11W have followed his recruitment closely and while it should be no surprise to anyone that he ended up a Buckeye, it's great to finally know for sure that one of the most talented defensive backs in the country will be donning the Scarlet and Gray.

The 6-1/185 cornerback had offers from schools like Alabama, Wisconsin, Nebraska, Notre Dame, Rutgers, Michigan, Cal, UNC, and others before picking the Buckeyes. He starred on both sides of the ball for Voorhees (NJ) Eastern this past season and performed good enough to already be named a participant in the US Army All-America Bowl in San Antonio next January. 

We caught up with Woodard for the first second third fourth fifth time since we began covering his recruitment and this time are pleased to announce we finally got to talk to him about this past weekend's visit and his commitment to Ohio State. Join us after the jump to hear from the latest member of Buckeye Nation, Eli Woodard.

You have just announced your commitment to Ohio State. What made you finally decide to pull the trigger?

It was just about the right time being now and the right place being The Ohio State University. It’s a privilege to be able to be a part of Buckeye Nation and a blessing to be able to earn my spot as a part of the Silver Bullets. Keyword is earn because I have a lot of work ahead of me to fit in with the talent that is already in place.

How does it feel to be a Buckeye?

In one word, unreal! I'm just really living the dream right now. I will enjoy the next few days and then it’s time to keep working because that’s what open this door for me.

When did you exactly tell the coaches of your decision? How did they react?

My family and I went out last Thursday and stayed through till Sunday. It was during a one on one visit with Coach Meyer we all got to see and feel what the direction of Ohio State football is traveling in. The only thing I can say about what I was told is that Buckeye Nation better buckle up! After hearing what Coach Meyer had to say, I just knew that this was it for me. I also sat back and watched how they dominated the closing out of the 2012 class and put other programs on notice that Ohio State Football represents the best of the best and I knew something special was going on. I pulled the trigger and the coaches were excited, my family was excited and I was excited.

You were at OSU from Thursday-Saturday. What was the purpose of the visit? 

The purpose was to meet the coaches and my mother and sister had never seen the campus which was big. I also knew that the coaches wanted to meet me face to face just as much so they could be sure I was what they had been hearing about. Those things were that I am a true 6’1” corner as well as that my family's and my personality fit with the OSU Football family because that is exactly what it is – a family.

What did you do on your visit and how did you enjoy it? What did you like the most?

My family seeing everything was fun for me and I got time to interact with the players, which was just as important as anything because those are the guys I am going to be with most of the time. Ohio State has a lot of quality guys, the talent is great and I just feel blessed to be apart of it.

I know you said you wanted to sit down face to face with the coaches. Who did you meet with and how did that go? What did they tell you?

I met everyone and had quality time with every coach on the defensive side of the ball and strength wise. Needless to say I am proud to be calling every one of them my coaches. I feel comfortable with them and my family felt very comfortable as well. We all got to know each other as people, talked football and had a really good time.

What current players did you get to spend time with? What did you do and how did you feel you fit in with them?

I was around near the whole team at one point or another, particularly the defense. I felt I fit in really well with the guys on the team already.

There were some other prospects on campus this weekend. Did you get to meet or talk to any other players that would be in your class? If so, who? Will you now recruit other players to come to Ohio State?

I got to meet Billy Price and he looks like he can really get the job done! I'm really excited to get to know him and Jalin better, and Cam and I have been in solid contact for a while now. We're all really looking forward to getting that work in. I am not sure if any of us have to try and recruit anyone at this point. Ohio State is the number one place to be in the country, but I certainly will do whatever I am asked to do by my coaching staff.

Now that you are committed, what is your focus going to be on in terms of prepping your game for OSU? Anything specifically you are going to work on?

I'm really not going to take anything for granted and will continue to do the type of work that has gotten me this far. At the end of the day this is a great moment, but it’s just that, a moment, and an opportunity. It’s all what I do with it from here on out. I have a five to six day a week training schedule and will continue to do so. I have plans to travel and work out with a select group of guys in the spring and will know more about that in the next few weeks to come. But if you want to be the best you have to surround yourself with the best so you can push yourself to new limits.

Now that you can relax a bit from recruiting, what are your goals for your senior season?

My recruiting is done and now my preparation begins! I want to enjoy my senior season and help my team anyway I can to get to a state title. We have the talent to do it and the guys are already working hard. I believe in all of us to get the job done.

Finally, if you can say anything to Buckeye Nation, what would it be?

Buckeye Nation has been great throughout this entire process and I just want to say thank you to all of them and to Eleven Warriors and look forward to everything that comes next for all of us!


Comments Show All Comments

Arizona_Buckeye's picture

Jesus - Urban is building a monster and listening to this kid talk about it is getting me totally fired up for this and future seasons.  The kid said it best - you can tell that something special is coming to the Buckeye Nation!!! 

I've got my strap buckled and waiting for the throttle to be stuck in 'High Speed Destruction' gear!!!

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

DMcDougal24's picture

He and Cam Burrows sure show a lot of enthusiasm. It is really exciting to see players who love the University that much.

Arizona_Buckeye's picture

It is going to be one helluva class!!!  When you hear Eli say he was impressed how Urban came in and killed the last two months that he wanted to be a part of it - you know there are several others that were paying attention too, and are now elevating OSU to the top of their lists!!

Here - I thought there was going to be a bit of a loll in the off season!!!

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

DefendOhio's picture

Sounds like a terrific young man. Alex, I remember you saying he was one of most refreshing players you have covered before. Can't wait to have him represent The Ohio State University. 

Buck U's picture

Great interview.  I know it has been said about other recruits, but this kid really sounds like he has his head on his shoulders.  Can't wait to watch him on Saturdays!

michaec5's picture

Coach Meyer is quite the salesman, not only is this a quality pick up on the field, but the kid retains information very well. I'm sure he was told about three quarters of the stuff he said in reply to the interview, which is great it shows me that he is totally bought in to what TOSU has to offer.


ThirdLegLouie's picture

Damn, Eli Woodard sounds like a great kid. I'm too pumped for the future of Buckeye football. Glad to have Eli as part of the Silver Bullets. Also, want to take a moment to shout out a big thank you to Urban F. Meyer. 

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

Matt's picture

I wish every recruit had Eli's poise/character.  The last time we got a commit from a 6'1" corner hailing from New Jersey, things turned out pretty good for us.  Pumped to get this kid on campus.

Hayze's picture

This kid might have just became my favorite Buckeye. Very well spoken and represents what's missing from a lot of college football recruiting.

Best quote was when he said that he wants to come in and earn his spot. Really love that attitude compared to guys commiting to one school or another because of playing time.

Refreshing to say the least.

dgrubbs's picture

The silver bullets are gonna be so sick in these upcoming years!

JasonBuck's picture

What a great start too the 2013 class, all I can say is scUM better watch out Urban Warfare is coming for you!

SPreston2001's picture

Welcome to Buckeye Nation Eli!! Im super excited about this young man!!!

Taspra's picture

I'm not going to say he's my favorite because I think I've said that (at least to myself) about all of them so far. haha (Although, Tyvis is still my number one) I think that's a testiment to what a great group of guys Urban is getting! The wait for football season will be agonizing. So excited.  

SPreston2001's picture

Theyre all my favorite. Just be glad he chose to come to OSU. 

Buckeye1996's picture

Eli is the type of recruit and person that makes me proud to be a buckeye.

larzdapunk's picture

My favorite thing about this kid so far is that he was able to tweet his announcment using proper capitalization, grammar, and spelling.  Nice to see a talented, well-spoken kid commit to THE Ohio State University!

SPreston2001's picture

Im beginning to think Urban can bring back the recruiting years of Cooper!! Cooper could recruit his a$$ off but he just couldnt beat tsun for some reason! Needless to say im super excited!

thaPriNcE614's picture

what scares me about that is..what if mattison has got meyers number

Arizona_Buckeye's picture

Meyer also has Mattison's number as well!  It does flow both ways. 

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

Alex's picture

Best kid I ever disrespect to any others

Bucks's picture

I know I've seen plenty of people saying complimentary things about this kid. Not even referring to his obvious talent on the field. Can see why.

ARMYBUCK's picture

This kid truly seems to be someone I would be proud to call my little brother.  He gave me goosebumps with some of his answers.  The fact that he just "gets it"!  He speaks of it being a privilege to play for The Ohio State University and not vice-versa... and how can you not notice his numerous referrals of hard work and continuing to do so?  To that, as a fan, I say Mr. Woodard it is a Privilege to have you!  GO BUCKS!

otrain2416's picture

These are exactly the type of players I am proud to cheer for at ohio state. A high character, humble, talented player. Well done Urban. Go Bucks!

We were born to love Ohio State and hate that team up north.

SouthBayBuckeye's picture

I love how excited these guys are to come on board. Can't to see that attitude and how it carries to the field.

Banned from ATO since June 3rd 2PMish PST

OfficerRabbit's picture

Of all the jersey's I've purchased, I was most excited to buy that badass #2 that Malcolm Jenkins wore. It's hard not to have a man crush on a great lock-down corner. As it turned out, #2 wasn't a bad number to have, until last year (why oh why TP??). Anyway, Eli seems like a great kid and a talented player. Here's to hoping the next one I buy comes from this guy. Welcome!



bucknut24's picture

Pencil him in to be an awesome team leader down the road.  The kid knows exactly what he wants and how to get there.  Very impressive and very glad we have him.  Welcome aboard Eli!

5ocbuck's picture

Great answers. I was not expecting such mature and composed responses from a young man of his age. I feel elated.

capn's picture

Great Kid

Capn, Make It So...

zosima's picture

I am usually highly prejudiced for in-state kids to succeed, but I love what Eli has to say, a great representative of tOSU already.  I would love to see the real TP and he manning the backfield for 2-3 years together!

Buckeyejason's picture

All I have to know is that Alabama offered him..welcome Eli! These jersey kids can ball, hope we have another Malcom J in the works :)


osbucks9's picture

Great head on his shoulders. Love the fact that he considers it an honor to play of tOSU. Sounds like maybe Davonte Neal thought it was the other way around and that's why Urb and Co. decided to pull his offer. 

After the way TP looked in front of the media, it will be nice to have a kid like this sit down in front of the world and answer questions without being stumped or having to be coached on what to say and not to say. 

RBuck's picture

He doesn't have a neck?

Long live the southend.

njcro's picture

He gave a great interview and looks to have his head on straight. I'm glad see UM go get kids like this. Looks like a quality individual!  I was scared when I saw the stuff spewing from Stafon Diggs, and am honestly a little thankful he's not coming. We don't need kids like that. 


Kids like this is what we want. 

ekeith21's picture

Urban will own Brady Hoke!