Football Recruiting: One Week to Glory

By Jeremy Birmingham on January 28, 2014 at 5:00p
78 Comments

Here we are, one week left until signing day and it seems there are just as many questions as answers when it comes to the conclusion of Ohio State's 2014 recruiting class. While of course we are inclined to feel panic and stress about how things will resolve themselves, it's my hope that we all realize two important things as conclude the race of 2014; two simple concepts that can change how something like following recruiting impacts your day-to-day mental health.

Fort Knox is secure...what about Jamarco Jones?High school kids have to make grown up decisions: let them be, folks.

No. 1: Ohio State's coaching staff is — and is always — working tirelessly to not only bring in the best class in the Big Ten, but in the country and just because they don't always get the players "we" feel are the best players or the best fits, doesn't mean that the Buckeyes have taken "stretched" for someone under their level. Urban Meyer doesn't reach, period. The Buckeyes would, and will, absolutely save a scholarship for next rather than recruiting a player into the program for four-to-five years that they don't believe can be an impact player.

No. 2: At the end of the day, we're talking about the decisions of teenagers, stuck between (in some cases) dozens of schools. The choices these teenagers — and their families — make are not decisions they take lightly. They are not decisions made quickly. It's nothing but the single biggest decision of their life and they make it with tens of thousands of people waiting on their every breath. If a recruit chooses another school, even after they've "committed" to yours, it doesn't mean they were afraid of something, or weren't qualified, or this, that or the other thing; it just means they made a different decision that they felt was best for them.

I know what you're all thinking: "Jeremy, are you setting us up for a disappointment with Jamarco Jones?"

No, I am not. I mean, yes, maybe I am? Maybe I am asking you to prepare yourself for that possibility so that if it were to occur every Buckeye fan reading this will handle themselves appropriately via social media and other avenues? Simply put, don't be that guy. You know, the guy who embarrasses himself and the team he "represents" by calling out a teenager on Twitter? Yeah, him.

Moving on, let's actually talk about the Jones situation, shall we?

JONES'ING FOR ANSWERS

Scout.com's Bill Greene, one of the people I look up to most in this business, is fond of the mantra: "It's all about relationships," when it comes to recruiting. He's 100-percent correct, of course. In the case of Jones, that relationship was with former Buckeye defensive line coach, and current Houston Texans linebacker coach, Mike Vrabel. When Vrabel departed unexpectedly, the door reopened for Jones' second-choice, Michigan State, to try and plant some doubt in the 6-foot-5, 290 pound tackle's mind and it appears they've succeeded in doing that. They've got consistency in their staff, they've got a number of recruits from the Chicago area heading to Michigan State that Jamarco is close to to, it's a bit closer to home and they've turned their program around to the point where considering Michigan State ahead of Ohio State wouldn't be considered borderline lunacy like it would have been a few years ago. Those factors combined with Vrabel's departure have convinced Jones that it's worth "making sure" with a visit to Michigan State this weekend.

How can the Buckeyes counter that? What should they say?

Thursday night the Buckeyes will make their pitch and do so with Larry Johnson, Sr. and Ed Warinner heading to Chicago with the hopes of convincing Jones to stay the course with the Buckeyes are forgo the visit to East Lansing. No one visits East Lansing in the middle of the summer just for fun, let alone in the midst of the most brutal winter the Midwest has seen in decades. If Jones makes the trip, it's all business and it's business the Buckeyes want no part of.

When Jones committed to the Buckeyes in June, he did so and instantly started forming very close bonds with the entire "Dream '14," and those players are working hard to keep him reminded of that. As unfortunate as it is, coaches leave schools all the time and Jones certainly knows that. Ohio State's efforts this week will rely on Warinner's ability to connect with Jones, knowing that he's the man who would be coaching him anyway, never Vrabel.

Ohio State could mention that Jim Bollman's track record for developing NFL talent from highly-ranked (or any-ranked) offensive lineman is suspect at best. One look at the 2008 "Brew Crew" recruiting class that saw the Buckeyes land three five-star offensive lineman (Mike Adams, Mike Brewster and JB Shugarts) yet only have one drafted (Adams, second-round) compared to Warinner's success at Notre Dame (not to mention at Ohio State where he took a player Bollman put at TE (Reid Fragel) and made him an NFL draft pick in less than a year at offensive tackle) should illustrate that. Bollman is adept at creating relationships, not so much at creating offensive lineman. In fact, from 2008-2011, there was not a single Buckeye offensive lineman taken in the NFL Draft. That's Bollman coached and Bollman recruited, and I am sure it's been mentioned before, but if it hasn't it ought to be.

Ohio State has plenty of opportunity for Jones, the highest-rated lineman in their class, to come in and contribute as a freshman. Four senior starters departing means Jones, if he is as advertised, is almost a certainty for the two-deep as a true freshman at Ohio State; an opportunity that comes along very rarely. The question is: what's important to Jones? The Buckeyes are hoping to answer that Thursday night. Jones has been an important piece of their class for a long time and a player that Urban Meyer singled out early as a key recruit for 2014, can that knowledge help keep Jamarco from East Lansing?

As of today, Tuesday, I am more confident in Jones remaining a Buckeye than I was yesterday, Monday. What if Jones decides to move on? Who is the next option at tackle for the Buckeyes? My answer might surprise you...

Can the Buckeyes make a push for Malik McDowell?Defensive tackle or offensive tackle? McDowell could be either.

TWO BIRDS ONE STONE?

When Urban Meyer strolled into Southfield High School Monday afternoon the goal was clear: get Malik McDowell to commit to taking his fifth and final official visit to Ohio State instead of LSU this upcoming weekend. The mission was accomplished when McDowell scheduled the visit and promptly cemented the Buckeyes in his final four teams on Twitter Monday night.

During the visit to Southfield, Ohio State made inquiries about Chukwuma Okorafor, an intriguing tackle prospect committed to Western Michigan. Okorafor has reportedly added a number of major offers since his commitment to the Broncos (Iowa, Arkansas, NC State, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Florida and more) but has remained committed to Western Michigan and PJ Fleck. 247Sports.com's Steve Wiltfong reported today that Ohio State had in fact offered Okorafor, but when I spoke to the 6-foot-6, 285-pounder Monday night it didn't seem to be the case. He had been waiting for a call from the Buckeyes to confirm their interest.

"They didn't call, so I guess they're not offering," Okorafor told 11W. "I am not really worrying whether they did or didn't." 

Clearly, Okorafor is comfortable with his choice in Kalamazoo, but maybe the Buckeyes could still land their fifth offensive lineman — or third defensive lineman — in the 2014 from class from Southfield? Yes, McDowell could absolutely fill either role for the Buckeyes in the future and that's one of the things that makes the 247Sports.com composite five-star so intriguing as he prepares for his visit this weekend. 

My sources say that Urban Meyer made a significant impression on not just McDowell — but also with key members of his family — during Monday's visit and that the Buckeyes are more of a threat than they're being given credit for. Getting McDowell on campus this weekend will give Larry Johnson and the Buckeyes' staff a chance to make things interesting. 

As of right now, I'm cautiously optimistic that not only will Jamarco Jones remain a Buckeye, but that Malik McDowell could join him, despite the fact that most people feel the Buckeyes are a distant third behind Michigan State and Florida State for McDowell's signature. Ohio State could end up adding McDowell and New Jersey athlete David Njoku after this weekend's official visits, so stay tuned as always.

RUN-TMC HIGHLIGHTS

If you're bored, or sad that football is over, or just plain want to see something that's worth seeing that gets you excited about the future of Buckeye football, I recommend taking a look at Buckeye commitment Terry McLaurin's senior season highlights. McLaurin is regularly overlooked by people talking about the "Dream '14," but there's little doubt that he talent is on the same level as any of the more heralded members. 

 

78 Comments

Comments

BassDropper's picture

I understand the importance of Jones and Vrabel having a relationship during the recruiting period, but I don't understand how Mike V's departure could also lead to Jone's departure. How often does a D-Line coach typically spend with a player not in their unit? 

DIRECTIONER

Jeremy Birmingham's picture

Almost never In fact, I joked with someone the other day that Vrabel being in Houston likely means he'd be able to talk to Jones more than if he was coaching defensive lineman at Ohio State.

osu07asu10's picture

In fact, from 2008-2011, there was not a single Buckeye offensive lineman taken in the NFL Draft. That's Bollman coached and Bollman recruited, and I am sure it's been mentioned before, but if it hasn't it ought to be.

Take it away JLaw....

"They don't know what they don't know." - Coach Mick

PittBuckeye's picture

I think the thing that gives me the most hope with McDowell is if he wasn't seriously considering Ohio State he would have to be insane to turn down a free trip to LSU right now where the weather will be in the 60's and 70's this weekend.

Jeremy Birmingham's picture

Very good point. It's obvious that if McDowell knew where he wanted to go he'd not have to go anywhere this weekend, yet still chose Ohio State. Buckeyes have an opening, can they take advantage of it is the key.

ToledoMan's picture

Time for The Closer.

Buckeye5000's picture

I live in NE Louisiana and I can tell you it is not warm at all here right now with high's of about 30 degrees. It might be by this weekend but right now people are freaking out (pussy's) about how cold it is down here. 17 degrees, wind chills near 0 as I right this (still a lot better than Columbus though). I've lived here 13yrs. and this is as cold as I can remember since I've lived here. But like I said it may change by this weekend.

Go Bucks!

Squirrel Master's picture

I don't know how you can say 17 degrees with a zero windchill is a LOT better than ANYTHING! I live in Kentucky and its 9 with a -11 windchill, but ZERO wouldn't rank as A LOT BETTER in my book!
granted, what you are dealing with is short lived where Columbus is in the middle of a season of this weather, but he is from Michigan. Even Columbus weather would be an upgrade!

I saw a UFO once.......it told me to have a goodyear!

Buckeye5000's picture

Why a down vote for this post? You need to read the the rules for down votes. I only commented that it was a lot better down here than in Columbus because my family still lives in Columbus and they told me how bad it was. You really need to read the rules for down votes because me trying to sympathize with your situation up north is no reason to down vote me. 

Go Bucks!

InvertMyVeer's picture

While I agree you didn't deserve a dv there, it's best not to talk about downvotes because a lot of people will dv you more just for that. It's not anything worth getting worked up over anyways, and it may have been an accident.

Football is complicated...

Buckeye5000's picture

That's true and thanks for the good advice. I will let it go in the future.
 

Go Bucks!

+1 HS
JLBNYC's picture

This x1000!

I know what you're all thinking: "Jeremy, are you setting us up for a disappointment with Jamarco Jones?"
No, I am not. I mean, yes, maybe I am? Maybe I am asking you to prepare yourself for that possibility so that if it were to occur every Buckeye fan reading this will handle themselves appropriately via social media and other avenues? Simply put, don't be that guy. You know, the guy who embarrasses himself and the team he "represents" by calling out a teenager on Twitter? Yeah, him.

 
 

BassDropper's picture

Simply put, don't be that guy. You know, the guy who embarrasses himself and the team he "represents" by calling out a teenager on Twitter? Yeah, him.

No matter how many times you try to get this point across it will NEVER happen. It's an unfortunate society that we live in today where 40 year old men can log on to a public platform and ridicule a 16/17 year old kid because they won't be attending their favorite college. I have been vocal on here in the past when the same group of people think it is acceptable to casually chat with these teenagers like they are best friends. 
 
 
 
 
 
 

DIRECTIONER

Larryp713's picture

That guy recently attacked Roby for being injured for the Orange bowl and Philly Brown for a bad play after being one of the great leaders this last year. That guy needs to be called out and humiliated by every Buckeye fan that's on twitter. That horrifically stupid stuff is on par with all other forms of douchebaggery (racism/bigotry/etc...)

Respectfully,

Larryp713

BassDropper's picture

Which guy? The same one I called out before?

DIRECTIONER

osu07asu10's picture

Which guy? The same one I called out before?

You mean the same guy the post before you called out?

"They don't know what they don't know." - Coach Mick

swainpm's picture

LarryP713 Upvote x100 my friend too many fake Buckeyes become the voice of the program. Would love to see these "fans" treated the same as those they harass.

Jugdish's picture

Age has nothing to do with idiocy. Hopefully these recruits have the character to overlook comments from these trolling experts. Whenever Meechy came onto The 11W site, you could tell he had a maturity about him to understand what it takes in replying to readers of 11W. These young men have been in the limelight so long, they understand pressure and comments from the public.

Remember to get your wolverine spade or neutered. TBDBITL

Go1Bucks's picture

More often than not, it isn't the 40 year old doing the berating, it is the younger than that ages, that haven't learn the lessons of age, common sense and common decency when it comes to treating individuals.

"I will pound you and pound you, until you quit." -Woody

Squirrel Master's picture

Bass,  I've seen 12 year olds and teenagers get on there and be just as awful.
True there are the bad egg "40 year olds", but most do know not to be "that guy". Teenagers and 20 somethings have a lot more who DON'T get it.
and the only thing I agree on is that it will happen no matter what we plead or say on here about because some of the worst at it DON'T come on this site. They are on bucknuts or some other site that embraces stupidity.
but to just single out 40 year old males as THEE culprit is being shortsighted!

I saw a UFO once.......it told me to have a goodyear!

Nashville Buckeye's picture

Great article Birm.  Keep up the good work!  8 days and counting until you get a break!
Would love to keep Jones AND land McDowell.  Curious to see what we do if Jones does leave though.  Do you think we go after another O-Line, or bank it?  If Okorafor doesn't know whether or not we offered, chances are we didn't.
In either case, we have a great class coming in, and I'm looking forward to 2014!
 
Go Bucks! 

Bamabucknut's picture

McLaurin's senior season highlights
Watching that was fun !

kgab11's picture

I agree. Also, I've never seen so many yellow flags on a highlight video. 

ronbizi's picture

Good video.  Really liked how he came down with the ball several times in a crowd.  Obviously the speed there is unreal.  Can't wait for him!  The yellow circles and constant pauses did get annoying after a while.

IBLEEDSCARLETANDGRAY's picture

I try not to get emotionally involved with recruiting but I do follow. Just not religiously. The only thing that has ever concerned me in the grand scheme of things for the program is where the recruits coming in now will be several years from now. Will they be stars, busts or will they appear in the "Where are they Now" thread? I don't get choked up over flips or decommits or even attrition but they do affect the team (and that is why I follow it), it just takes 3-4-5 years for that to materialize. How anyone can recruit well over a really long period of time is impressive to me. You just never know what the hell is going to happen tomororw let alone 5 years from now.
And Birm, I like that you are the "go-to" guy for a lot of players and coaches. That's respect. You do a fantastic job representing TOSU and 11W. :)

"Sherman ran an option play right through the south" - Greatest Civil War analogy EVER.

osubuck57's picture

My hope would be just to keep all our guys committed. Glad you have a better feeling in regards to Jamarco. Malik would be icing on the cake for sure though. Like that we have 2 coaches going to see Jamarco too. Hopefully that will seal the deal.

SCOTTC.

Whoa Nellie's picture

Awesome reporting, Jeremy, as always.
Hope for the best; prepare for the worst; and coach the hell out of the guys who want to be Buckeyes. 

“Don’t fear criticism. The stands are full of critics. They play no ball. They fight no fights. They make no mistakes because they attempt nothing. Down on the field are the doers, they make mistakes because they attempt many things.”

bucknut94's picture

Things will work out for the best. We have great coaches who will get the Buckeyes who sign ready to play.  

Ahh Saturday's picture

Hey Birm,
Thanks as usual for keeping us up to date on recruiting.  Two questions:  First, how shocked would you be on a scale of 1-10 if a guy not mentioned in the above article made his way into the class?  Second, as if you haven't been working hard enough on '14, when are you gonna give us a sneak peak at '15?

allinosu's picture

Has Malik said he was a nsd decision on tv? Boy the ups and downs for the last seven days or so. Right now I feel up. I hope we all feel that way next Tuesday. Thanks Birm

sharks's picture

As of right now, I'm cautiously optimistic that not only will Jamarco Jones remain a Buckeye, but that Malik McDowell could join him, despite the fact that most people feel the Buckeyes are a distant third behind Michigan State and Florida State for McDowell's signature. Ohio State could end up adding McDowell and New Jersey athlete David Njoku after this weekend's official visits, so stay tuned as always.

If this happens, the gif party that results might break the internet.  I think Mr. Birmingham has some insider info...

The postgame show is brought to you by... Christ, I can't find it. The hell with it...

BuckNutzGasMan's picture

Can Njoku be the NJoker if we get him?  The Chef and the Njoker? That would be sick.
Braxton should also steal Swaggy P from Nick Young.
I wish the best to all these guys in their careers no matter where they go.  Not that they care but ill only cheer for them if they are in the scarlet and grey (or playing against the sec).

ODEEZ330's picture

Great article birm. In regards to McDowell my money is on urban lol haha great news from your source

O'Deez330
stark county football

bethesdabuck's picture

Birm, great write-up and perspective. Just one thing that I think might be important to correct, because it seems to be a common misunderstanding in the Ohio Sate fanbase and media (and the kind of misunderstanding that might rile recruits): Jim Bollman does not coach MSU's offensive line. He's co-offensive coordinator and responsible for tight ends. A guy names Mark Staten coaches the OL, and I would imagine he's been forming a relationship with Jones. My guess is Dantonio knew Bollman's strengths well, and knew OL wasn't one of them! 

wpitt41's picture

This pic applies to your earlier article! Go Bucks!

“FOUR TO SIX SECONDS, A TO B, AND YOU GET PISSED OFF WHEN YOU GET THERE!” - U.F.M.

unknownmusketeer's picture

Isn't Coach Meyer left handed?

teddyballgame's picture

Thanks for the recruiting updates.
Mclaurin def. seems underrated, hope he turns out to be "that guy" ...the one who wasn't a big deal coming out of highschool but blows up in college and then everyone is saying "where'd that guy come from?"

bleedscarlet's picture

Can people on Twitter control who follows them and who can comment on their twitter account?

I'm too drunk to taste this chicken

JozyMozy's picture

yes. either a) make your profile private, meaning nobody but your approved friends can see your tweets, or b) leave it open (much preffered, otherwise, what's even the point?) and block the people that give you trouble. The blocked people can't interact with your account anymore.

BEREABUCKEYE's picture

I think there'll be a Terry McLaurin position in Urb's offense by the time he's done. It's similar to the Percy Harvin position, but also includes big plays on defense.

MikeEagleBuckeye's picture

Thanks for the great article, Birm!  Obviously, keeping Jamarco around is priority numero uno, but can you imagine swiping McDowell from right under Dantonio's nose as well?  Damn!  Where do I sign up for that?

allbucksallthetime's picture

Birm.  You are the man!  IMO, this is one of your very best efforts from many to chose from.  Your logical assessment of the entire recruiting process is spot-on.  Ultimately, these young men being recruited will do what is best for themselves and we fans must accept that, for better or worse.  
But, make no mistake, this Buckeye coaching staff is incredible at their jobs.  The energy and passion they continue to bring to the program each and every day make me proud to be a fan of tOSU!  I am very confident in the direction this team is headed and in our leadership.  When the chips do finally fall for the Dream '14 team, our Buckeyes will be positioned better than ever to succeed.
Thanks again.  Go Bucks!
 

BoFuquel's picture

Good luck young men, wherever you choose to further you ambitions. GO BUCKS!

I wish I didn't know now what I didn't know then.

W-burgbuck's picture

McLaurin has a knack for pulling in contested passes and going up and high pointing the ball. Looks like he can do it all. Would love to see him become a possession/safety valve for Braxton. (Or whoever inherits the job in 2015.)

W-burgbuck

Ginger_buckeye's picture

I agree almost like philly was this year. I also think if maybe he put on some pounds he would be a killer running back he has really good vision and sharp cuts in that video

We don't give a d*** for the whole state of M*******

ArizonaBuckeye's picture

Really hope Jones stays committed, but whatever his decision is I wish him the best of luck. If we can land McDowell that'd be HUGE. The '14 class will be strong with or without Jamarco, but hopefully with.

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

Colorado Johnny's picture

Coming down on recruits and giving them a hard time due to them not choosing your school is wrong, dead wrong. But spare me the "let them be, folks" bit. It's funny how it usually comes from the ones following the every little move of these kids on social media. Really? Me let them be? At least I'm not retweeting videos of them running around in the snow half naked. Kinda creepy if you ask me. Following recruits this closely is dumb. Really really really dumb. And you have only yourself to blame for their behavior on social media ad for being upset/pissed off when they don't choose your school. Downvote away. Couldn't care less as per usual.
And it's pretty obvious that Jones is all MSU

BuckeyeW's picture

Maybe just don't comment next time.

Jeremy Birmingham's picture

Appreciate you reading the article, I imagine it was not easy from up there on your soapbox.

I don't see anything wrong with fans following or interacting with the recruits or anyone on social media, that's what social media is FOR. That said, using it as a way to lob insults at a teenager for visiting a school, or choosing a school that is not the one we support is outside of the lines and does far more damage than it does good.

Seattle Linga's picture

Birms laying down the sarcasm - nicely done. By the way thanks for making me lose sleep this upcoming week the night before NSD. I know I won't be sleeping a whole lot with Jones decision coming up.

btalbert25's picture

I really don't disagree with a lot of what you are saying.  I do think it's different if someone from staff of such a huge blog(media) is following kids on Twitter, than if some 40 year old dude who is obsessed with Ohio State is asking for retweets and favoriting everything a high school kid does.  

Scarlet_Lutefisk's picture

I do think it's different if someone from staff of such a huge blog(media) is following kids on Twitter, than if some 40 year old dude who is obsessed with Ohio State is asking for retweets and favoriting everything a high school kid does.

It would make an interesting discussion to compare the ethical merits of following an underage person for the purpose of monetization against that of doing so for the rush of living vicariously through their exploits.
 

btalbert25's picture

I agree it would be, I don't think Birm is making a living at doing it.  Alex certainly wasn't getting rich off it for the years he was here at 11W.  Sure he departed for something more lucrative and ultimately I'm sure Birm would enjoy doing this for a job instead of punching a clock, but those guys are doing it for 11W and it's readers.  
 

teddyballgame's picture

http://www.elevenwarriors.com/forum/football/2013/07/gardner-for-sure-gone
Seems kind of rich coming from a guy who as recently as July was looking up a player on twitter and playing detective...
 
 

Oakland Buckeye's picture

BOOM! Teddy went deep with that one! sa-weet!

 

36buck's picture

Haha!!!!  Hypocrite and a loser.    Good one Teddy!!!

RedsBuckeyeBoy's picture

Wait a minute, stuff that you put on the internet isn't automatically deleted at the start of each week!? Oh, boy...

13THandSummit's picture

Now THIS is what I come to this site for. In-depth article about a subject that interests me? No. People complaining for no good reason about said article? That is my idea of entertainment!

btalbert25's picture

Recruiting drives me nuts.  People who give kids a hard time because of the school they pick are morons.  So are people who are act as if these kids are just poor innocent exploited kids who have no idea what the world they are about to enter into is all about.  Some of the recruits do take the process very seriously and some go wherever they get laid the most on their visits.  I'm not saying let them be, I'm saying act like adults. 
We don't need to be an asshole or a bleeding heart about these kids.  They are far less innocent in this process then many of us like to believe.  They'll make their decision for whatever motivation they see fit.  Maybe it's academics (far less than recruits say it is), maybe it's loaded handshakes, maybe they want to stay close to home.  At the end of the day it really makes no difference.  They make their choice and if we all act like we're older than 12, we should understand it has ABSOLUTELY ZERO bearing on our lives.  We shouldn't be pissed at the kid or feel the need to defend their honor based on their decisions because we are fucking adults here and there is better shit we should be doing with our lives!

BuckeyeinSECcountry's picture

If Jones feels that MSU is best for him, then I wish him all the best. These kids are making the most important decision of their lives. We want the best team but the kid has to do what is best for him. GO BUCKS

drew

CentralFloridaBuckeye's picture

Well, I hope there is a way we an keep them in the fold here.  Would love to see them play at OSU.  Man, I can't wait to see how it pan out on NSD!
Go Bucks!!

burg131's picture

What makes you more confident today, as opposed to yesterday, that Jamarco will still be a Buckeye?

jamesrbrown322's picture

"In fact, from 2008-2011, there was not a single Buckeye offensive lineman taken in the NFL Draft. That's Bollman coached and Bollman recruited.."
I find that appalling as an OSU fan. I didn't realize that stat..amazing.

"I can accept failure, but I cannot accept not trying." - W.W. Hayes

ISURVIVEDCOOPER's picture

First, thanks Birm - I enjoy reading your takes on recruits and recruiting.  
Second, I believe you wrote about this before, or at least one 11W staffer did, but the cold truth is that every class comes in with high hopes with only a handful truly making indelible impressions on us, let alone becoming NFL material.  In fact, it used to stupify me that during the 90s we had success in sending players to the NFL in a fairly large amount (sorry, don't have the numbers).  
So, for any recruit that we start salivating over, I think that we are salivating more over their status, their number of stars, their high school clips (against much inferior competition), and quite simply, their hype, than the teenager/person who carries all of it on their shoulders.  We should keep a healthy perspective that 5 stars don't guarantee anything... there are injuries, personal circumstances, underachieving, and a lot of other reasons that make college a final destination for many of these kids.  So I'm in wholehearted agreement that if a recruit decides to change colors or decline us, to just wish them the best for their sake and nothing more.  MSU was a great example of what can be done with even 3 star players, and I truly believe they could have contended for and been respected for their effort in the NCG.
It shouldn't make us root any less for our team or the players we have... the true buckeyes.

"I don't apologize for anything.  When I make a mistake, I take the blame and go on from there." - Woody Hayes

MN Buckeye's picture

As always, thanks, Birm! A voice of reason during these times is very helpful, along with reminders to represent our team, school, and state well.

1MechEng's picture

Birm on point again! Thanks for the update. Looking forward to the next 7 days to see how things shake out in the recruiting arena.

Eph97's picture

Just mind blowing that OSU could even lose an elite prospect it has signed to MSU. Cherry on top is Bollman vs. Warriner. The kid must be making an irrational choice based on something else (gf? friends?) if he goes to MSU. You can't even argue about playing time because he'd be able to legitimately compete for a spot next year with his talent.

btalbert25's picture

Why does it have to be an irrational choice?  MSU was really close to being a national title contender.  One hiccup early in the year.  They beat us head to head and won the Rosebowl.  They  lost fewer games than us this year.  They finished ranked ahead of us.  By all accounts MSU was a better team this year and proved it on the field. The last 4 years combined, they have 42 wins.  If you count the year that didn't count for Ohio State we've had 42 in that same time.  MSU the last 4 years is damn good.  They are putting guys in the NFL and have played for the B1G title 2 of the last 3 years.  They beat us this season, took us to the brink last year, and are the real deal. 
I keep reading all this garbage about how a kid would be nuts to go to MSU instead of Ohio State, but according to the results, that's not the case.  Plus, I think we can put to rest a lot of the Walrusball stuff.  It whooped our defenses ass this year.  It's totally rational for a kid to want to go to MSU right now. 

btalbert25's picture

It's possible, that maybe Tressel was the culprit to the horrible offenses we had during his tenure, and it's hard to judge anyone's coaching on the Fickell year things were such a mess here.  Perhaps, Bollman it was JT who was the inept offensive coach.  We know he was a control freak when it came to his team. 

Buckeye_in_SEC_country's picture

Birm... Give us your predictions for Njoku, Jones, and McDowell. 

RunEddieRun1983's picture

Personally with or without Jones and McDowell I'm still proud of the class being brought into Columbus.  That said, Jamarco Jones was the recruit I followed most closely (yes even more so than Raekwon McMillan) because I knew of the deep need we had for stud O-line players.  I really hope he stays but if he chooses to go we should all be happy with the work Urban and the staff have put in to bring us this pretty phenominal class.

I don't always downvote, but I do always downvote a Michigan fan trolling the Buckeye boards.

bethesdabuck's picture

Did MSU have their in-home with Jones last night or is it tonight? 

German Buckeye's picture

Jones will make the decision that's best for him and his family. Honestly, ANY kid even considered by the staff to play football at OSU is an outstanding top 1% type of kid compared to the tens of thousands of high school seniors playing football across the country.  We really can't lose with ANY kids that are remotely in the discussion to play for the Buckeyes.   

chrisco1987's picture

Thank you for reminding everyone that these are just kids and that they are trying to make a "life" decision when they are looking at where to go to school.  If Jones does move on, I hope Buckeye fans everywhere treat him with respect and no one lobs twitter bombs at the kid.  With that said, I hope Jones stays and McDowell commits to TOSU so that we can rub it in the faces of tsun and sparty fans!  Go Bucks!

Cali Buckeye

BuckeyeDale's picture

Exactly right, and also, unless a kid is fortunate enough to run thru the grind (Mike D'Andrea remind you of what I'm talking about?) this will be his last choice about where to play football for almost 10 years, and this decision would definitely impact that one.  So these kids not only have to trust the 'relationship' that's developed, but also that his talents are going to be developed sufficiently for him to go to that next level.  So let's not forget that all those 3 *** playing in the NoFunLeague also shouldn't be forgotten.  So let's not condemn a kid for making that decision, let's wish him well, but hope it is his first life decision that teaches him  with those decisions come consequences, and he ends up like Bike Hart, Jake Long, and Chad Henne.

 
BuckeyeDale
GO BUCKS!!