Catching up with Eli Woodard: The Opening

By Alex on July 21, 2012 at 12:00p
23 Comments
Woodard "balled out" at The OpeningWoodard enjoyed The Opening (photo: Scout)

If you have been around this site for some time you have certainly heard from Voorhees (NJ) Eastern DB Eli Woodard, who committed to the Buckeyes back in the middle of February.

Last we heard from Woodard, he was in town for the spring game and was gearing up for a summer full of team and individual work outs, as well as some of the elite camps and combines being held across the country.

Woodard was recently at Nike's The Opening in Beaverton, Oregon, where he and 6 of his future Buckeye teammates competed in a group of 150 of the nation's top players. As usual, Woodard drew rave reviews from those in attendance and was among the top performers for the weekend, despite his Field Generals team losing in the 7-on-7 pool play championship game.

In addition to The Opening, Woodard has also attended the Rivals 100 camp and will be heading to Orlando next weekend to participate in the Gridiron Kings event. The future US Army All-American performed well at all of his camp stops this summer, and now sits as a five star and the second ranked cornerback in the country according to ESPN/Scout's Inc., while also racking up four stars from Rivals, 247, and Scout and being rated as the fourth, seventh, and eighth cornerback respectively by those outlets.

We caught up with Eli to hear about his experience at The Opening, if he is doing any recruiting for the Buckeyes, what the rest of his summer plans are, and when he might be back at Ohio State. Join us after the jump to hear the latest on Ohio State cornerback commit, Eli Woodard.

You were just out in Oregon for The Opening. How was that experience?

The experience was great. I got to meet a ton of the guys I had been hearing a lot about and go up against the best in the nation. Nike really goes all out with everything they do and I just really made sure I appreciated everything about it. My game has grown a lot between attending the Rivals 100 in Atlanta and The Opening at Nike. I picked up great tips and techniques from guys like Patrick Peterson, Joe Haden, and from all the other defensive backs at the event. Everyone that was there at all positions can ball. I made some really good friends and look forward to seeing everyone make it happen in college.

There were six future Buckeyes at the event, including yourself. How much time did you spend with the other guys and did that help you grow closer?

Cam and I haven't worked out together before so even though we weren't on the same team I got a lot out of watching how he works and attacks the game, same with the other way around. We both balled out at the event and are looking forward to playing on the same team for Gridiron Kings next week and then again in the US Army game. Beyond that, it was great getting to spend time with all of the guys, as we got along and had a fun time. Jayme kept us cracking up and I really am looking forward to us all being in the backfield together.

How would you judge your performance at The Opening? How did you stack up to the other top competition there?

It's one of those things that you know when you take the field you're going to get the best from the best and you better be ready to bring your best. I feel I was able to consistently do that throughout the weekend and put it all together in the championship game. I enjoyed every minute of the challenges that all of the receivers brought.

Who was the most impressive player you saw while out in Oregon?

I can list just about every player that was there! There was something to learn from watching everyone and how they played. Guys were really going all out and it helped me see the areas of my own game to focus on. Kendall Fuller, Brice Ramsey, Shaq Wiggins, Noel Ellis, Jourdan Lewis, Cam Burrows, Jayme Thompson, Priest Willis, Vernon Hargreaves III, Ricky Seals-Jones, Laquon Treadwell, OJ Howard, Christian Hackenberg, and Max Brown were just some of those players that stood out, and I really could go on and on all day.

What recruits that were out there were you guys trying to recruit for the Bucks?

We were talking to everyone! There are some guys coming [to OSU], that's for sure, but they will announce on their own time and I will leave it at that.

Coming out of The Opening what are some things you feel you need to work on?

Every part of my game really. Technique and conditioning are only as good as your consistency. I am going to practice everyday to get better so I can take advantage of the opportunity to be the best Buckeye I can be and earn a position on the roster. I want to play when I get to Ohio State.

What are your plans for the rest of the summer?

I am taking summer classes now so that I can graduate in December and be an early-enrollee. Football wise, my focus is on my team and us coming together to make a serious run at a state title.

When is your next trip to Ohio State?

I plan on trying to get out for a few days of training camp and am then looking to come out to the Cal, Nebraska and That Team Up North games. Hopefully I will then be on campus in January.

HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE OPENING:

23 Comments

Comments

Oakland Buckeye's picture

Thanks Alex - curious that of the 15 or so guys he mentioned he was impressed with, he did not mention SPARQ phenom & Field General teammate Mike Mitchell? Especially since we are recruiting him hard. Also - in the snippets of footage where you see Anzalone & Mitchell - Mitchell dwarfs him - keeping our fingers crossed!

capn's picture

Maybe He Did Mention Mitchell...
What recruits that were out there were you guys trying to recruit for the Bucks?
We were talking to everyone! There are some guys coming [to OSU], that's for sure, but they will announce on their own time and I will leave it at that.

Capn, Make It So...

703Buckeye's picture

+1

"Attack the Strong, Trample the Weak, Hurdle the Dead!"
-Former OSU S&C Coach Lichter

BOJ's picture

I know its a highlight reel and only a 7 on 7, but he certainly looks to be lock-downish in that clip.

southbymidwest's picture

Nice interview, love the enthusiasm, intelligence and attitude! Go Bucks!

45buckshot's picture

+1 couldn't ask for more

Veni, vidi, vici

UM3

Drewbuckeye's picture

Trust in Urb! He said that some guys there are defiantly coming to tOSU, but just are committing on their own time!! Who was there (besides Mitchell) that could be a silent commit? 

F--- Michigan!

Buckeyefan52's picture

Derrick Green??? I think he roomed with Elliot and is a buckeye fan.

Alex's picture

You guys are forgetting Tyquan Lewis was there too :)

AGL's picture

He is a BIG guy.  Wonder about Devon Allen,  is staff recruiting him or does he just have interest in TOSU ?  Funny stuff about insider info lately,  seems Eli Woodard knows who his future teamates will be.
 
 

Drewbuckeye's picture

My sources say Derrick is a Buckeye and did in fact room with Elliot, but I don't know if we would take him still. 

F--- Michigan!

buckeye76BHop's picture

Love your quote about tTUN but not so sure about your sources...no offense btw.  Green is a genuine Buckeye "fan"...but I'm just not sold that because of this he'll be a Buckeye.  There is a need for WRs (at least 2 more), 1 or 2 OL and that Safety I spoke of below and 1 LB (that makes 5-6 with 6 being a long shot).  I'm not sold on Green being in this class due to #s of recruits as well as #s of RBs already on scholarship.  I could be very wrong...I was on Jacobs...thought for sure it would be Whitfield...we'll see...not trying to sound like a know-it-all Drew...your sources could be right on.

"There's nothing that cleanses your soul like getting the hell kicked out of you."

"I love football. I think it is most wonderful game in world and I despise to lose."

Woody Hayes 1913 - 1987 

45buckshot's picture

It feels like UM3 isn't really hot on him. 
I hope we take him; he looks like the kind of RB I love to see at tOSU.
Hopefully Carlos Hyde rips it up in UM3s new offense and UM3 takes a new look at big, powerful RBs

Veni, vidi, vici

UM3

buckeye76BHop's picture

Green did room with Eze...
Mike is in as long as FSU doesn't impress him  A LOT.
As for Woodard (and Burrows)...wow!  They're going to be really good CBs.  Really liked Eli's body positioning against wrs in that video clip.  If Bell comes...this could be the best secondary OSU has seen as a collective whole in a very long time.

"There's nothing that cleanses your soul like getting the hell kicked out of you."

"I love football. I think it is most wonderful game in world and I despise to lose."

Woody Hayes 1913 - 1987 

buckeye76BHop's picture

Love that pic Oakland Buckeye...love it indeed;-)

"There's nothing that cleanses your soul like getting the hell kicked out of you."

"I love football. I think it is most wonderful game in world and I despise to lose."

Woody Hayes 1913 - 1987 

buckeyedude's picture

Boy, I like this kid! He's got it down!  He even has the "That Team Up North" thing down. He persuading others to go to OSU...Man, would love to get more info out of him on that one.

 

 

WezBuck28's picture

How could you not want to be apart of this team? With the young talent we have on board already how could you not be stoked about the future of this football team!

tennbuckeye19's picture

So glad Woodard is a Buckeye! Can't wait to see who else joins this class.

O-H-I-Owe-U's picture

Eli has the attitude of a winner. Glad he's a Buckeye. 

CowCat's picture

Enthusiasm, love of TOSU, commitment to win:  100 Trillion Dollars
Knowing to say "The Team Up North": Priceless.

"We get paid to score touchdowns, not kick field goals"
-- Urban Meyer

Poison nuts's picture

Nice - wants to enroll early - ttun - bright kid - great player...pretty psyched about this one!

"Death created time to grow the things that it would kill" - Detective Rustin Cohle.