Friday Night Lights Recap

By Derek Young on July 28, 2012 at 1:00p
22 Comments
Campers take in the action at Friday Night Lights

Friday Night Lights debuted in Columbus last night, as a crowd of about 1,000 looked on.  Friday Night Lights is an event that was first started by Urban Meyer, Mark Pantoni, and the rest of his staff at Florida.  It attracted many of the nation's top recruits to Gainesville and became a large role in recruiting.  Several schools have now integrated the idea into their recruitment plan.

Last night was also the first time that the new scoreboard was able to be shown at the 'Shoe.  It is now much larger and consists of a full high definition screen.  The Ohio State logo will still sit at the top of the scoreboard but was not yet placed back to its original spot.  During the event, the new scoreboard was used to display many highlights of the last ten years of "The Game" against the Wolverines.  There were two sequences in between action where the players were collected at midfield and instructed to watch the highlights for a period of time.

Loud music was continuously pumped through the stadium throughout the night.  The speakers that will be attached to the new scoreboard on the south side of the stadium were placed specifically on the east sideline, enhancing the noise and the experience for the nation's best in attendance.  The music represented the hip-hop genre with Ohio State mixes to some of the songs.  The players competing in Ohio Stadium fed off the buzz in the stadium stemming from the music that had them pumped up, the instensity of the coaching staff, and the fan reaction.

Many guest coaches were also in attendance to assist the current Ohio State staff in developing all the young talent.  Many of the guest coaches were comprised of historical Ohio State football figures and legends.  Rickey Dudley, Joey Galloway, Orlando Pace, LeCharles Bentley, Shawn Springs, and Michael Doss were some of the all-time greats there to facilitate and mentor the young athletes. At one break in the action, Joey Galloway grabbed the attention of all the campers at midfield for a solid 10 or 15 minutes delivering a very motivational speech. 

The camp began with group stretching and warm up activities, followed by a "stations" exercise.  The athletes were separated into their position groups and quickly went through multiple stops that incorporated skills such as agility, acceleration, flexibility, and overall speed.  Campers then performed drills that were specific to their position afterwards.  The night was then capped off by one-on-one drills in which intense competition took place.

Friday Night Lights was an overall success and had a massive amount of the top recruits in the nation.  Keep reading to find out what athletes shined under the lights and which ones will continue to be high on the Buckeye coaching staff's radar.

Toledo (OH) Central Catholic product DeShone Kizer showed off the live and strong arm it had been speculated he possessed.  It seemed effortless how he slung the ball around.  Kizer is definitely one of the most gifted athletes in the class of 2014, and he did nothing to hurt his stock in that regard.  Kizer only seemed to lack a bit of consistency in his accuracy, and struggled with touch on some of his passes.

Louisville (OH) QB Joey Duckworth continued to impress in Columbus last night, and will definitely be one to keep an eye on as we move forward. 

The two best and most consistent at the position last night were Kentucky native Drew Barker and Virginia native Caleb Henderson.  They each showed off strong and accurate arms.  Drew Barker continues to grow physically, and is definitely a presence on the field, while Caleb Henderson is quicker than I expected.

At running back, Mikale Wilbon stole the show.  He was leaps and bounds ahead of any other camper at the position on campus at this point.  Wilbon showed great ability breaking in and out of his cuts and possesses a great physical make-up.

The wide receiver position was another quality group.  Springfield (OH) wideout Thaddeus Snodgrass, who already has a Buckeye offer, was in attendance but did not compete.  Braxton Berrios of Raleigh (NC) might have been the most precise route-runner there to go along with the quickness he displayed.  Two that caught my eye right away were Artavis Scott and Shelton Gibson.  They were two of the fastest players at the camp and should be two that will be heavily recruited, barring any complications.

Buckeye commit Joey Bosa competed and had the attention of the crowd the entire night.  He was simply intense, dominant, and elite.  Ohio State is getting a very special player.  Fellow commit Billy Price also competed and he showed off a terrific work ethic.  Price had one of the best motors out there.  Much speculated OSU recruit Donovan Munger made the trip and also delivered a good showing.  Munger had the focus of Coach Meyer and Vrabel multiple times throughout the night.

In the secondary the two best in action were Lima (OH) Central Catholic CB Darius West and Chester (VA) Thomas Dale CB C.J. Reavis.  Each showed off tremendous quickness and hip turn, skills that are crucial in the secondary.  Darius West also won the secondary smokehouse award, which was given to the winner of the 40 yd sprints at each position.

22 Comments

Comments

Steve Earle Bruce Springsteen's picture

I'm sure Barker and Henderson are talented, but I figured after his last year at Florida, Meyer wouldn't be interested in recruiting any more Brantley types. 

The North remembers.

Conroy's picture

Brantley's biggest problem was that he was terrible.  It would't have mattered if he played for Oklahoma, Ohio State, USC, or whoever--he would have been bad anywhere.
Henderson can definitely run.  Obviously not the same way someone like Miller can, but he is fast enough to get 5-8 yards on a zone read.  That's all you really need.

Steve Earle Bruce Springsteen's picture

I keep hearing that, but Brantley was a 5-star, can't-miss prospect coming out of high school. He decommitted from Texas to play for Florida. He ran a 4.64 in high school according to Rivals. I don't care how good Henderson and Barker may be, I'm skeptical about whether or not they really fit the system. 

The North remembers.

Conroy's picture

He was a five star because he was great in high school.  I don't want to stay stars are overrated becasue they're not, but even still, only like 50% of 5 stars live up to the hype.  Brantley was clearly in the latter category.

And don't buy into the 40s that rivals (Or any other site, or anything that isn't timed with a laser) puts up.

Steve Earle Bruce Springsteen's picture

Yeah, I don't buy into those 40 times generally, but they usually are at least somewhat close to the truth. I believe they listed Tebow as running a 4.6 and he ended up running a 4.7 at the combine. 
"Trust in Urbz" and all that, but I hope we land far more mobile quarterbacks in the future. 

The North remembers.

tennbuckeye19's picture

Barker and Henderson are much more athletic and much less statue-like than Brantley. Think more Alex Smith than John Brantley.

45buckshot's picture

i guess they don't have to be Braxton Miller necessary; obviously Tebow wasn't outrunning anyone. you just need someone who doesn't look like they're going to panic when they have the ball. ;)

Veni, vidi, vici

UM3

buckeyedude's picture

I'm just curious...this event...was it open to only to those by invitation? Were other coaches of other programs allowed to come there to scout, like at some of the camps? Was it considered an "official visit" for all of the kids that showed up?
I wonder if any of those QBs received an official OSU offer?

 

 

Ian Cuevas's picture

It's not considered an official visit for the recruits.
This event was open to any football player in high school, but the actual recruits that are ranked, etc. were given invitations. Otherwise, you'd have to just hear about it and join. 
As far as anyone knows, there is no official scholarship out to the quarterbacks. Meyer and his staff want to be able to assess the QB's midway through the season.

buckeye76BHop's picture

Im glad Kizer looked good last night. I really think he's the QB OSU should go for 1st and then Henderson or Crest.

"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 

Conroy's picture

I think the ideal scenario would be we end up with a guy like Crest or Henderson who are pass first QBs who can run and then a killer athlete like Kizer.  Best of both worlds.

buckeye76BHop's picture

My biggest reason for wanting Kizer is so tTUN or MSU doesn't get him (hell even Illinois and Nebraska have already offered him).  Just kidding...sort of.  I really liked him after seeing him in a play off game last year against Avon in Fremont.  Avon was the runner up in Division II state title game to Troutwood Madison (where Cam Burrows is from) and he kept TCC in the game (which honestly they got blown away in the second half.  Had the lead in 1st half though).  I like him and hope the coaches do too...he's quite a competitor at such a young age.  We DON'T want him going to tTUN or anywhere else in the B1G...trust me.  It will come back to haunt us...  

"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

i doubt tsun wants him. they stuck with shoelaces from Richrod; they want to run a pro-style offense--they recruiting Shane Morris this year. Look for them to avoid running QBs and go after the tall statues.
Illinois though...

Veni, vidi, vici

UM3

Poison nuts's picture

I think I'd like to hear that Gibson is a Buckeye at this point. I'm now sold & think he's the best option we have a shot at for the final WR spot. I don't mind another smaller guy - we had plenty of typical 6' guys come in last year...

"Do not pass me, just slow down - I can move right through you" Superchunk - Precision Auto.

dmurder's picture

wasn't able to make it last night.
Did anyone take photo's?
There were only 1,000 people there?
Any other changes that were notable to the field or stadium?

"We have always had the best damn band in the land, now we have the best damn team in the land"- Jim Tressel 1-03-03

bassplayer7770's picture

Braxton was a nice surprise.  I expect he'll get an offer at some point.
From my angle last night, I thought Shelton was relying too much on speed to create separation, and he dropped some balls.  Watching your videos, it's clear those misses were a result of bad throws.
I also think Devon Allen looked good.  He created separation with routes, and he had good hands.  Also, he seemed to be even with Shelton and just behind the winner of the WR race at the end.

Derek Young's picture

Barker fits the offense the best IMO but all are good. Can't go wrong with either.

buckeye76BHop's picture

Gardner commits to OSU this morning per 247/ Bucknuts. Big offensive lineman from Indiana

"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 

osubuckeye4life's picture

I found this comment rather amusing and exciting at the same time on my twitter feed from one Beau Bishop.
"True story, we got the OSU FNL video in house & I said man "John Simon looks good" I then realized it was not Simon, rather Joey Bosa". #WOW
He could be joking but then again just look at Bosa's highlight tapes, the guy is going to be destroyer of worlds. I wish Simon had 2 more years of eligibility after this year.
Could you imagine Simon with Bosa, Price, Spence, Pittman, Marcus, Schutt, Washington, (whoever else OSU gets) etc. Granted, we'll probably see Spence and maybe Washington, Pittman, Schutt, and Marcus some this year.
I can't wait for the season!
Less than five weeks now!!!! 

buck-I.8's picture

Marcus will play LB, but yeah I agree, insane DL across the board. That depth is gonna give QBs nightmares.

nickma71's picture

I remember Thursday night lights. As in practice before a Friday game.