Deshaun Watson interview and a few highlight videos
- JaQuel Richmond unofficially visits Ohio State
- Corey Smith officially visits Hawaii
- Dravon Henry ran for 222 yards and three touchdowns on 30 carries, as Aliquippa beats Richland 37-21 in the PIAA Class AA Western Final.
Rivals$--Visit still on for Munger '13 OH DT Donovan Munger
- Donovan is scheduled to arrive this morning but will probably leave tomorrow instead of staying until Monday.
Scout$--Ohio Sophomore Has "Great Day" '15 OH ATH Eric Glover-Williams
- Eric picked up offers from tOSU and Nebraska on the same day. tOSU's offer came in Coach Meyer's office and Coach said he had personally scouted Eric.
Scout $ - Moore's A State Champ '13 FL LB Skai Moore
- By Campbell....Top 4 of Rutgers, Wisconsin, Vanderbilt & TCU. Says Ohio State has fallen due to lack of communication.
Ridgeland is Domeward bound.
Despite facing a team steeped in tradition and long on playoff experience, it was Ridgeland that fought back and found a way to earn a trip to Georgia’s Class AAAA football state championship game with a thrilling 28-27 victory Friday over second-ranked Marist.
“Considering what was on the line, I don’t know that I’ve ever been a part of a more exciting game,” said Ridgeland coach Mark Mariakis, whose program had not gotten past the second round before this season. “That’s what a semifinal game is supposed to be like.
After a gutty 10-play, 77-yard drive in the game’s final three minutes to take the lead, the Panthers’ fate rested on the right foot of Marist junior kicker Fletcher Malloy. His 34-yard field-goal attempt hit the right upright and bounced back to the turf as the buzzer sounded, sending the players on the Ridgeland sideline sprinting into one massive celebratory hug.
“I don’t even know how to describe what just happened,” said Ridgeland senior running back Darrell Bridges. “I can’t even explain how I’m feeling, other than just, wow!”
In a game of big plays, and with several college scouts on the sidelines to scout the talent, Bridges was the difference. The 6-foot-1, 215-pounder ran 21 times for 182 yards and two touchdowns and completed all three of his passes for 110 yards and two other TDs.
His first TD pass was a 57-yard bomb to Vonn Bell on the opening series of the second half, tying the game at 14, and one of his scoring runs covered 89 yards. He punctuated it with a broken tackle near the line, then lowered his shoulder to flatten a defensive back before continuing on his way to even the score at 21.
Marist countered with a 11-play, 71-yard scoring drive to regain the lead with 3:10 remaining, but Thomas Andrews’ extra-point attempt was blocked by Sharone Porter.
That set up the Panthers to answer with their own length-of-the-field scoring drive, kept alive by a 7-yard Bridges run on fourth-and-2 and capped by Bridges’ 24-yard TD pass to Shaqualm McCoy with 36 seconds remaining.
Marist drove right back down the field, covering 48 yards to move the ball to the Panthers’ 17 with five seconds remaining. But Malloy’s kick began tailing off to the right as it neared the goal post and caught just enough of the inside of the pole to bounce back onto the field.
“We hadn’t pulled that fullback sweep pass out of the bag all year, but that trick worked three times tonight,” Bridges said. “It was actually a screw-up, because we were supposed to go to the right, but I saw our receivers going to the left so we changed it right as the play started.
“Just unbelievable. An amazing game.”
Urban Meyer is 2-0 vs. Michigan in the past two weeks.
Yesterday, Massillon Washington cornerback/receiver Gareon Conley committed to join the Buckeyes’ 2013 recruiting class. Conley had committed to Michigan but recently reopened his recruitment.
He attended Ohio State’s victory over Michigan on Nov. 24 at Ohio Stadium as a Buckeyes guest, and the momentum change in his recruiting culminated with his decision yesterday during his official visit with the Buckeyes.
Massillon Washington coach Jason Hall said Conley called him from Meyer’s office around noon to tell him the news. Conley had been scheduled to visit Ann Arbor, Mich., next week. That won’t happen.
“In this business, I’m never surprised,” Hall said. “I think that Ohio State is obviously one of the top programs in the country. Coach Meyer and his staff do an awesome job.”
Conley is ranked a four-star prospect by Scout.com and a three-star by Rivals.com. He becomes the 18th member of Ohio State’s 2013 recruiting class.
Hall said Conley didn’t play football as a freshman, played mostly receiver as a sophomore then primarily cornerback as a junior. He played both offense and defense as a senior.
“This year, he was off the charts on both sides of the ball,” Hall said.
Conley caught more than 40 passes and averaged almost 22 yards per reception.
Hall said Ohio State probably won’t decide whether he’ll play offense or defense until he gets on the field next year.
Michigan was the first top program to show an interest in Conley, Hall said, and he committed to the Wolverines in March. But Ohio State’s interest in him grew.
When Meyer visited Conley while in Canton for the high-school state championships, the courtship gained steam.
“I know he very, very much enjoyed his visit with coach Meyer,” Hall said.
A freshman phenom who is already 6'7, 280-lbs, Downers Grove South (Ill.) offensive tackle Erik Swenson picked up his first offer this week, and there is little doubt that will not be the last.
At Wednesday's Core 6 Banquet, Erik Swenson was named Newcomer of the Year, a reward fitting of a freshman stepping in at the all important left tackle position, and not only starting, but dominating for the entirety of the season.
In the audience were many college coaches, coaches unable to talk to Swenson because of the rules, but nonetheless excited about his future. Illinois head coach Tim Beckman was one of those men, and on Friday, his Fighting Illini offered.
"This is really the first official, official offer," Erik's father Swen Swenson said.
Throughout the course of his recruitment, which will span the next three and a half years, Swenson will be called out of class frequently to meet with coaches, shake their hands, and let them see if he is truly his listed 6'7 (he is). However, on this day, the youngster could not quite figure out why he was being sent up to the office.
"It's been a pretty crazy day," he admitted. "I got called up during math. I was kind of confused. Usually, you don't get called down until after school or before, so my mind was rushing, but then I saw the Illinois coach in the office."
Swenson has received interest from schools across the country already, but to have the first offer come right from inside the state lines made it a little better.
"It was pretty cool and very exciting to see the home school take recognition in young players. It's very cool of Illinois to do that at such a young age."
Between the award on Wednesday and the offer on Friday, Swenson's profile is quickly rising, but the unassuming young prospect is happy just being a normal kid.
"He wasn't very happy that I posted it on Facebook about his first offer," Mr. Swenson said. "Like when he had to go up there the other day. He does not like the limelight. He's very happy and he knows his hard work pays off, but he's just as happy to have the award mailed to him."
The attention has always been there though, that's what happens when you're that much bigger than everyone else on the football field. It's also what happens when, because of that size, you're constantly forced to play against older competition and routinely get the best of them.
GERMANTOWN, Pa. -- ESPN 150 tailback David Williams said Saturday afternoon he trimmed his list to three schools: Arizona State, Ohio State and South Carolina.
Williams (Philadelphia, Pa./Imhotep Charter) isn't sure when he might make a decision, but he said it would likely come near signing day. He wants to see each school on an official visit and then talk a potential commitment over with his family.
As late as this September, ESPN Watch List offensive lineman Jimmy Byrne (Cleveland/St. Ignatius) believed he would commit to Ohio State. He’s an Ohio native, grew up watching the Buckeyes and Ohio State made him a 2014 priority, handing him one of the first offers of the class.
But on Saturday, Byrne committed to Notre Dame.
“I started off as a heavy Ohio State lean. For the longest time I thought I’d go there,” Byrne said. “But as time went on you grow to like other schools and Notre Dame continued to impress me and recruit me the hardest. [They] talked to me about the benefits of Notre Dame, and I grew to love it.”