11W Recruiting Notebook: UCF Week

By Alex on September 5, 2012 at 6:00p
36 Comments

Week one of college football is in the books, and it was certainly a good one if you are a fan of the Buckeyes, with OSU cruising to a 56-10 win over the Miami RedHawks.

Will Timmons get the nod?Ryan Timmons is making waves in Buckeyeland

It was also a good week if you are a fan of recruiting, as the Buckeyes hosted a slew of top prospects for the opener and Hurricane Isaac was kind enough to hold off on raining over Ohio Stadium for most of the contest last Saturday.

Saturday not only was key for recruiting prospects attending the game, but it also marked the date that the contact period for junior prospects officially opened, meaning when the clock hit 12 AM on Saturday morning, the OSU coaching staff was on the horn with many of the top prospects around the nation.

This week we're back with the UCF Week edition of the 11W Recruiting Notebook and we once again bring you a jammed-packed plethora of information.

Join us after the jump to find out who the staff contacted this weekend, what the latest happenings on the recruiting trail are, how high school prospects faired in week two of the season, and who is on the docket to take in the big game this weekend.

The Buzz

There is a lot of buzz and chatter floating around recruiting circles after this weekend, so let's jump right into the goods.

Lots of Buckeye MailRaekwon McMillan's mailbox was full after 9/1

The Buckeyes are eyeing two linebackers in the class of 2013 and Tyquan Lewis and Mike Mitchell are the two players at the top of the list.

The latest development in this story has Lewis making an announcement on September 20, with Mitchell coming out and naming Ohio State and Oklahoma at the top of his choices.

When it's all said and done, I expect Lewis to pick the Buckeyes later this month, and I believe the choice has already been made. As for Mitchell, the good sign for Buckeye fans is that he has already visited Oklahoma and says they are tied with Ohio State atop of his list. He has not yet visited Columbus, but says he plans to take an official sometime this season and I truly think once he does that, he will become a Buckeye.

Another big time 2013 target is Belle Vernon (PA) Area OT Dorian Johnson. Johnson was originally committed to Penn State, but opened things up after NCAA sanctions were handed down to the Nittany Lions.

Miles caught up with Johnson and the 6-6/280 prospect told him that his top three, in order, right now are Pittsburgh, Ohio State, and Virginia Tech. He plans to take official visits to all three schools and then make a decision after the season. Right now our feeling is that Pitt will win out for his services, but a superb Buckeye visit could change things, so keep an eye on this one.

Ryan Timmons is a name that has caught steam recently, as the four-star wide receiver prospect from Kentucky made multiple trips to OSU this summer for camp and has expressed high interest in the Buckeyes. 

Timmons told us this weekend that he speaks to the Ohio State coaches every week and that the staff is telling him to hold off on committing anywhere, as they will offer him if a spot is open. The speedster is setting up a visit to campus sometime this season and it appears that he would commit to the Buckeyes on the spot if offered.

As for 2014 prospects, the big news came out of Cleveland Glenville, as junior ATH Marshon Lattimore was offered by Ohio State. Lattimore is pushing to be named the top 2014 player in Ohio and can do it all with the ability to play running back, wide receiver, or defensive back. He is a fan of the Buckeyes and was at OSU's opener this past weekend after tallying 6 carries for 107 yards and a score on the ground, to go along with 6 catches for 132 yards and 3 touchdowns through the air, in a 40-17 Glenville win over Solon. Stay tuned to 11W for more on Lattimore in the coming weeks.

One of the top quarterback prospects for 2014, Drew Barker took in the OSU-Miami game this past weekend and called the experience "awesome". He also liked how the coaches contacted him the night before the game (well really, morning of the game) as soon as they could, right after the contact period opened, as well as spoke to him after the game to see how he liked the experience. Overall, the Buckeyes are doing a great job in making sure Barker feels wanted despite not offering yet, and if an offer comes his way, OSU has as good a shot as any school.

Another 2014 prospect who took in Saturday's win was Monroeville (PA) Gateway DB Montae Nicholson. Nicholson too enjoyed himself, but did not come away with the offer he has coveted. The Gateway star was born in Columbus and grew up rooting for the Buckeyes, so it's not a surprise that an offer from Urban Meyer would put the program at the top of his early list.

Speaking of top junior prospects, Raekwon McMillan had himself a game this weekend, recording 15 tackles and 2 sacks in his team's opener. The five-star linebacker also filled us in on his recruitment, giving us a top five, in order, of Ohio State, Georgia, Clemson, Alabama, and USC. McMillan booked his plane tickets for the OSU-Michigan game already, and will also attend three Georgia games and an Alabama game this season. He said he will have a decision made by this time next season, but won't announce until the Under Armour All-America Game.

Demetrius Knox is a name now well known to recruiting fans and his story will be an interesting one to watch play out. Knox almost committed a few weeks ago to Texas after they offered his teammate and close friend, Daniel Gresham, but decided to wait things out a bit. Gresham committed to Texas and Knox has expressed he wants to play with someone he calls "his brother", but is willing to take some other visits and give time to schools to see if they offer his running back.

Knox told us if he had to pick today, the choice would be Texas, but that Ohio State, Alabama, TCU, Baylor, Michigan, Oklahoma, and Oklahoma State are all showing interest in Gresham of late. He also mentioned that the Buckeyes, Crimson Tide, and Horned Frogs probably pose the biggest threat to UT when it comes to landing his services, if, and only if, any or all of those programs offer his good friend.

CJ Reavis is one of the top defensive backs in the class of 2014 and made the trip to Columbus for Friday Night Lights. On Monday, Reavis took in the Virginia Tech-Georgia Tech game at Lane Stadium and enjoyed his visit for the Hokies' opener. Word on the street is that Frank Beamer's squad is the team to beat for Reavis's services, but a source tells us that many think the only school that can change that is Ohio State.

Finally, West Chester (OH) Lakota West RB Mikel Horton has had a fine season thus far, rushing for 370 yards and 4 scores in just two games. Horton may end up being the state's top running back in the class of 2014, but right now doesn't have any offers to his name. He does have a list of top schools though, and they are, in order, Michigan State, Wisconsin, Ohio State, West Virginia, Cincinnati, and Alabama. Horton will visit Cincinnati this Thursday for the game against Pitt, Wisconsin for their game against Michigan State, and Ohio State for The Game against Michigan.

I personally feel that the 6-1/225 junior fits the mold of a Spartan or Badger running back better than he would in the Urban Meyer system, but OSU is in weekly contact with the Cincinnati-area star so we will see where this one ends up.

High School Football recap

It was a big week in high school football and most of the Buckeye commits and targets were in action last weekend.

Barrett has some jetsJT Barrett had a great first game to open 2012

JT Barrett and Wichita Falls (TX) Rider made their debut on Friday, falling in a heart-breaker to Abilene Cooper by a score of 43-36. Barrett did his part to help his team, going 9/20 for 271 yards and 2 touchdowns through the air, while also running for 178 yards on 23 carries with 2 more scores. The passing percentage wasn't fantastic, but Barrett continues to show he is a big time playmaker.

Marcus Baugh opened up his 2012 season with a 41-0 victory over Colton. The future Buckeye tight end had a nice game, recording 5 catches for 75 yards in limited action due to the lopsided score.

Ezekiel Elliott was at it again, rushing for 157 yards and 3 touchdowns on 5 carries, while also hauling in an 89-yard touchdown pass, all in the first half, en route to Burroughs' 35-0 win over St. Louis (MO) Lutheran South.

Michael Hill and Pendleton rolled to another lopsided victory, this time winning 60-0 over Westminster (SC) West Oak. The big defensive tackle and future Buckeye had a sack in the win.

Taivon Jacobs was also victorious in his season opener, as District Heights (MD) Suitland rolled over Washington, DC McKinley Tech 41-0. Jacobs was a true triple threat, scoring on the ground, through the air, and via a pick-six while on defense.

Darron Lee and New Albany fell to 0-2 on the season after a 23-20 overtime loss to Westerville Central. Lee had a much better performance in week two, going 7/14 for 140 yards and a touchdown at quarterback, while also returning a punt the distance of 51 yards for a score.

Jalin Marshall didn't have to do too much in Middletown's 31-0 win over Springfield. The senior star sat out the second half after throwing for 112 yards and 3 touchdowns, also rushing 10 times for 65 yards, in getting his team even to 1-1 on the season.

Tracy Sprinkle had another monstrous game as Elyria beat rival Elyria Catholic 43-7. Playing both defensive tackle and defensive end, Sprinkle recorded 9 tackles (7 for loss), 5.5 sacks, a fumble recovery, and 4 quarterback hurries in the victory.

Jayme Thompson and Toledo Catholic took down Temperance (MI) Bedford 49-28 at home this weekend. Thompson helped out with a 32-yard interception return for a touchdown, while junior QB DeShone Kizer contributed, going 7/9 for 78 yards and a touchdown passing and adding 5 carries for 70 yards and a score on the ground.

Corn Elder continues to rack up the numbers, as he had 219 rushing yards and 4 touchdowns in Ensworth's 47-10 win over Chattanooga (TN) McCallie.

The top player in 2014, Da'Shawn Hand, made his debut this weekend and it was a successful one. Hand finished his first game with 11 tackles, including 4 for loss, as well as a quarterback hurry.

2014 RB Jonathan Haden, the brother of former Gator and current Brown Joe Haden, ran 20 times for 196 yards and 2 scores this past weekend. The younger Haden also gave OSU fans some good news this weekend, confirming the team is currently at the top of his list, citing his desire to play for Urban Meyer.

Finally, 2015 quarterback prospect Jayru Campbell of Detroit (MI) Cass Tech helped his team to a 57-0 win over Detroit (MI) Northwestern. Campbell only played the first half of the game, yet still recorded 3 passing and 2 rushing touchdowns in the contest.

Week 3 Games to take note of include:

  • Mentor at St. Ignatius (Mitch Trubisky, Jimmy Byrne)
  • Washington DC Woodson at St. Edward (D'Andre Payne)
  • Elyria at Midview (Tracy Sprinkle)
  • Detroit (MI) Central Catholic at Cincinnati Moeller (Wyatt Shallman, Shane Jones, Alex Gall, Keith Watkins)
  • Colerain at St. Xavier (Chris Davis, Dylan Wiesman, Trey Kilgore)
  • Trotwood-Madison at Huber Heights Wayne (Cam Burrows, Mike McCray, Ashton Jackson, Verondtae Wilkinson, Lovell Peterson)
  • Cincinnati Elder at Louisville (KY) Trinity (Devin Pike, James Quick, Jason Hatcher)
  • Springfield at Sycamore (Thaddeus Snodgrass, Davonte James, Tinashe Bere)

Visiting This Weekend

As you can see in our Season Visitor Thread, week one brought in a number of players on Ohio State's recruiting board, as well as some other prospects trying to get the staff's attention.

Duckworth is a rising starDuckworth is visiting for the UCF game

Week two brings us some more talent, and while the list is sure to grow, a solid base is expected in with QB Joey Duckworth, WR Thaddeus Snodgrass, OL Kyle Trout, OL Nathaniel Devers, DB/WR Marcus Whitfield, and DB Cam Burrows.

Duckworth, who starts for Louisville (OH), was a no-namer just a few months back but really launched himself into the spotlight with a great summer camp showing. The 6-3/185 signal caller is more of a pro-style passer and doesn't fit the Meyer/Herman mold, but has shown great accuracy and arm strength when working out in front of the staff. The coaches will continue to forge a relationship with the junior, but I expect him to land somewhere else in the Big Ten when he makes his decision.

Snodgrass is Ohio State's top in-state target at receiver for the class of 2014, and Meyer was really impressed with his workouts at camp this summer. Springfield, for whatever reason, hasn't tried to utilize the speedster in its first two games, but the 11W staff has seen him workout against top talent live and have been very impressed. Notre Dame and Michigan State are the main threats as of now, and this weekend's visit should go a long way in further putting the Buckeyes out in front.

Trout was invited down to this weekend's game by Mark Pantoni and will make the trip with his parents. At 6-6/270, the Lancaster lineman has great size, as well as great athletic ability, and projects as a tackle at the next level. He has been hearing from many of the top programs in the Midwest and it could be a matter of when, rather than if, the Buckeyes offer. Trout is one of a handful of Ohio linemen the Buckeyes are telling to stay patient as they evaluate handing out offers, so it will be interesting to see what comes out of his visit for the UCF game.

Two Massillon Washington stars will be making the trip to Columbus in OL Nathaniel Devers and DB/WR Marcus Whitfield.

Devers, 6-4/270, is a good fit at guard at the college level and is looked at as one of the premier linemen in Ohio for his class. He currently holds an offer from Toledo, but has been getting a lot of interest from many BCS programs, including Michigan, who he currently holds at the top of his list. The Buckeyes have not been in touch with Devers as much as their rivals to the north have, but interest is starting to heat up and this trip could be key in this recruitment.

Whitfield is a smooth athlete at 6-1/170 that can play on either side of the ball at the college level. He doesn't hold any offers yet, but says Ohio State has been showing a ton of interest in him early on. He is a big Buckeye fan and if offered they appear to be the leaders, but teammate Gareon Conley is a Michigan commit and is trying to sway him to join him in Ann Arbor should the Wolverines come in with an offer. It is a good sign that the staff is having Whitfield at Saturday's game.

Finally, Burrows will once again take in the game at the Horseshoe as his team's Thursday night game allows for the trip to Columbus. Burrows continues to be an ace recruiter for Ohio State and has acted as an extension of the coaching staff when he is around his peers at OSU.

36 Comments

Comments

biggy84's picture

Alex, do you think the recent troubles that some Pittsburgh area players have had after committing here (Dorian Bell, TP) has soured some their athlete's opinion of the program? High school coaches in that area?

buckeyechad's picture

I really don't think highschool kids look at TP like that. Everyone I know from Western PA loves Pryor and thought he was a boss while he was here. Couldn't tell you how they see the others, but Jordan Hall is doing pretty solid as well.

Buckeyejason's picture

Philly Brown and Corey (Pitt) brown seem to be fine. Isn't Noah Spence from Pittsburgh area as well?

BUCKEYES BABY!

buckeyechad's picture

Spence is from central PA, closer to Philly than Pittsburgh.

Alex's picture

I really don't think it has much of an impact as many may....Spence is from Harrisburg not Pitt...Philly Brown is from Philly not Pitt lol....the Pittsburgh guys like Hagan and Bell that didn't work out had nothing to do with OSU or the way the program brought them along, although it wouldn't matter any way as there is a new staff

Buckeyejason's picture

Oh, mah bad.

BUCKEYES BABY!

biggy84's picture

Thanks Alex! It seems like there was a player from Jeanette (sp?) that tOSU wanted last year that elected to go elsewhere. Appreciate the response.

Alex's picture

Yes I think the MSU depth chart took S Demetrius Cox away from osu

Triv's picture

Would Knox's buddy consider a preferred walk on spot? If not I just don't see him being a buckeye with our limited schollys. Hope Demetrius reconsiders only playing with his friend, kid is an absolute stud.

Sorry Urban, Woody is still my favorite

Buckeyejason's picture

Great info! Thanks Alex!

BUCKEYES BABY!

FloridaBuck's picture

157 yards and 3 scores on 5 carries?! Sick.

Buckeye_in_SEC_country's picture

Great write up... Thanks for the info. 
I hate to be negative, but the hype around Corn Elder is a little too high in my opinion.  He plays in the private school league which is loaded with subpar talent.  I actually grew up near Chattanooga where McCallie is and they aren't very good.  If he was putting up these numbers in the public school league I would probably be impressed.  I don't know what he has done on the camp circuit, but don't take these numbers against McCallie, Baylor, BGA, Brentwood Academy too seriously. 
Lastly, I'd like to see a 2014 commit take place.  Maybe Snodgrass will be the 1st with his 2nd visit in 2 weeks.  Obviously he is very high on OSU.

Alex's picture

Have heard from two people---one coach who plays against Corn and someone else who knows their talent----and both are VERY high on him

Buckeye_in_SEC_country's picture

Don't get me wrong, he's a very good athlete.  When I was in college he would come to the community center I worked at and would dominate the other kids.  But I have also seen the private school talent he plays against and if we are saying Timmons plays weak competition, this kid is too.  I also heard last weekend from someone that knows a family member of his that he wants to play basketball in college more than football.

Buckeye_in_SEC_country's picture

QUESTION:  Why wouldn't the coaching staff consider taking Gibson, Quick and Timmons and take one less skill player next year? 

Triv's picture

I believe the question is whether we have enough schollys left to take all 3 and still have room for the likes of Lewis, Mitchell, Bell, Johnson, and possibly Munger/Worley

Sorry Urban, Woody is still my favorite

buck-I.8's picture

For what it's worth, Steve Wiltfong mentioned in an open chat that he's hearing now that Munger will not end up in Scarlet and Gray. Not sure if accurate, but since we haven't heard much else recently, and the guys at 247 tend to be pretty careful about accuracy, it seems valid.

William's picture

I don't see OSU getting Quick, and I'm tired of the Timmons doesn't play good enough competition talk, if the dude gets an offer, good, because he's a stud.

MotownBuck's picture

With limited schollys, not really feeling the whole Knox "both or none" approach. Is his friend a position we need? Is he that good (after all UT offered right)? Think we walk away or UFM works his UFM mojo and breaks them up? Does Dorian Johnson's decision determine how hard we go after Knox? Why is the sky blue? Mommy is that really where babies come from? ...
 
Sorry, lot of questions.
 
And oh yeah ... really warming up to this Mr Lattimore dude ...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t927TU1En5M

Trotwood-Madison. Once a Ram, Always a Ram.

buck-I.8's picture

If Gresham is really that talented, he could come in and replace Boren, who as we've seen can do big things in a scheme with a flex fullback. But I'd only take the risk if this kid really shows he's worth it

btalbert25's picture

I'm going to take in Barker's game on Friday night, I'll give a full report!

Buckeye_in_SEC_country's picture

Please do... My vote for 2014 QB is Barker... Let us know whether the hype is real.

SPreston2001's picture

I cant wait for Cam Burrows to arrive on campus!! I think he's going to be a STUD!!

Buckeyejason's picture

I'm thinking more of Woodard than Burroughs.

BUCKEYES BABY!

Buckeye_in_SEC_country's picture

@Triv... I think we end up missing on Bell... UT is our competition and I believe they win 9+ games this year.  He actually lives in TN so it will be more convenient for him.  We won't get Dorian Johnson and he will blame it on money and distance.  We might not get Mitchell... Texas isn't real close to Ohio.  He has a younger brother that his parents will have to take care of plus try to travel and follow his career.  Only way we get Mitchell I believe is if his brother wants to play hoops at OSU.  I think we end up with:
Gibson
Lewis
Munger
Worley
Quick/Timmons
I'd like to see Urban flip someone we aren't talking about, but I don't see it and the 11W staff keeps us updated really well.  If there was a flip in the making, I think they would've addressed it. 

tennbuckeye19's picture

There's no way Tennessee wins 9+ games this year. That's crazy talk.

KBonay's picture

Quick question about visits.  If it is an unofficial, does the University still give the players tickets to these games they attend?  Or if they have to purchase them, I assume they have 'seats' set aside?

swingo256's picture

Could be wrong, but I thought Mikel Horton goes to Lakota East not West

Alex's picture

East last year West this year

ODEEZ330's picture

the 2 massilon kids are good and Tosu caliber. and alex i think gareon conley decomitted from scum. know a lot of massilon boosters and fans (me being a mckinley alumn and booster) and they are saying conley is dying for Tosu offer

O'Deez330
stark county football

buck-I.8's picture

He didn't decommit, he tweeted about wanting to visit other schools. We'll see how it plays out, but Hoke doesn't let committed guys take officials, so he may decommit in the future.

schooey's picture

I don't like the idea of the package deal kids. I suppose if they are both superstars and we need both positions one would have to consider it. But, the idea of HS kids trying to dictate the situation is irksome. 

Poison nuts's picture

Same here. There's other fish out there. A kid who's 2 games into his junior year demanding to play with his buddy in college or he won't go there is bit much IMO....

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

Crimson's picture

Maybe so.  However, I've also heard he's coming here regardless but trying to bring his friend as well.  Just a rumor like others, but looking out for a friend isn't that bad.

cinserious's picture

This weeks buckeye leaves go to: on offense, Ezekiel Elliott. On defense: Tracy sprinkle

Life's daily struggle is choosing between saying F--ck-it, or soldiering on with your responsibilities.  

Dougger's picture

haha nice +1

I like football