Recruiting Notebook: Updates on Kahlil Haughton, Sterling Jenkins and Lorenzo Nunez

By Jeremy Birmingham on April 25, 2014 at 3:00p

Good afternoon friends. I do hope your Friday has arrived sans dramatics and that whatever you've got planned for your weekend is interesting or whatever. 

This week, Ohio State's football (and basketball) coaches were back on the recruiting trail, beginning their spring evaluation period of 2015 prospects. On Thursday, specifically, the Buckeyes had coaches all over Georgia and Tennessee among other places. Today's recruiting updates will touch on a few of those visits as well a few other potentially interesting tidbits.


Tom Herman, Ohio State quarterback coach and offensive coordinator, made a number of stops today in Georgia (more on that coming) including Harrison High School in Kennesaw to check on 2015 quarterback Lorenzo Nunez. Despite all the discussion about Brandon Wimbush and Torrance Gibson, it was Nunez who earned his offer first last summer during a camp at Ohio State. He returned to Columbus in late October and since then has been all over the country investigating the programs he's interested in.

This weekend, he'll visit North Carolina State, who — despite their "lower" program status compared to the others he's considering — remain a viable option for him. Nunez is paying close attention to depth charts and offensive styles and because of that, I think he's likely leaning towards South Carolina (where he visited last weekend) or NC State. He'll make a decision within the next week, according to those close to him.


Pittsburgh (Pa.) offensive lineman Sterling Jenkins is down to two schools, Ohio State and Penn State, but everyone knows that. He visited Ohio State on April 11th, and went back to Penn State for what seemed to be the 40th time on April 12th for their Blue and White game. Up to this point, Jenkins has not committed to Penn State and this weekend he'll be returning to Columbus, but there's a slight caveat to this visit. 

He's heading to Dublin Coffman High School for the camp series, and likely won't be on campus at Ohio State, although he says he hopes to get over to do another impromptu campus visit if he can. Penn State has to be considered the leader here, but Ohio State continues to pop up and he's trying very hard to make an informed decision.


Ohio State's new defensive coordinator Chris Ash was in Texas yesterday and extended a scholarship offer to Midland safety Khalil Haughton. A three-star safety, Haughton has offers from LSU, Oklahoma, Baylor, Michigan, Duke and close to a dozen more. He shared his thoughts on Ohio State with Eleven Warriors following Ash's visit.

"I had talked to (Chris Ash) a while back and he said he really liked how I played," Haughton said. "(When he offered) he talked a lot more about the program and how he wants me to get up there soon to experience the whole thing. (I'm interested) mainly because of their tradition, how they win and their fan base."

The visit is something Haughton wants to arrange, and he's been no stranger to traveling lately. 

"(I've visited) Oklahoma, Baylor, TCU, Oklahoma State, Texas, Duke and Texas Tech," he said of recent visits. "I'm looking at just the vibe of each place, the authenticity of the coaching staffs, and academics. Playing time is a big thing too."



Lagrange TE C.J. Conrad will not camp at Ohio State as I discussed on Twitter a few days ago, although he still plans on checking in at Michigan State, Michigan and Penn State this summer. 

He's had a busy week with coaches stopping in to see him: Wisconsin, Indiana, Michigan, Vanderbilt, Duke, Illinois and Pittsburgh all checked into Keystone High School. 

Why won't he camp at Ohio State? Simply put, I believe Conrad did not appreciate Ohio State offering Miles Boykin from New Lenox, Illinois, last week. Can the relationship be saved? Probably, but the Buckeyes will need to make it right soon. I don't see Conrad as the type to change his mind if he's committed elsewhere.

Nice story on Buckeyes' wide receiver target Christian Kirk. I believe Ohio State is in a much better position with Kirk than most do, although I'm not ready to call it for the Scarlet and Gray just yet.

Zach Smith was in Brentwood, Tennessee' Ravenwood High School yesterday to see Van Jefferson. Jefferson has narrowed his list to Tennessee and Ohio State according to some, but I hear Clemson and Penn State have remained in the picture. As of now, I see no way that Jefferson doesn't end up in Columbus, but a planned return trip could help seal the deal. That could happen within the next two weeks.

This week saw two more Buckeye running back targets crossed off the proverbial list. Miami secured a commitment from Jordan Cronkrite, giving them two Buckeye tailback targets at running back for 2015 (Dexter Williams.) Yesterday Oregon nabbed Powder Springs, Georgia (McEachern High School) speedster Taj Griffin. Griffin fits the profile of recent Oregon running backs in that he's blistering fast. None of those three have visited Ohio State, despite regular discussion with the Buckeyes.


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ODEEZ330's picture

Burnt the bridge with Conrad. He gone. I feel him though

stark county football

+7 HS
MichiganBuckeye222's picture

so Conrad is upset that we made an offer to Boykin....So he will now visit MSU...Who also offered Boykin.  Makes total sense.

Representing the Buckeyes in the Mitten State since 1987.


+4 HS
chirobuck's picture

That's exactly what I was thinking, and not only that I'm sure we have to take 2 TEs this year given we missed out on all of them last year and our starter this year is a senior, that's pretty weak Conrad


^ best post ever ^

+1 HS
Jeremypreemo81's picture

ODEEZ I agree. I think he's gone too. It's part of the recruiting game tho. The sucky part is Conrad is an Ohio kid who wanted to be a Buckeye. 

+2 HS
FROMTHE18's picture

don't get how prospects get offended when a school offers another prospect at their position when they can visit and contact plenty of programs. Its the way it goes, if he didn't want that offer to go out, then commit.

+3 HS
Squirrel Master's picture

unless something changed recently, he doesn't have an offer from OSU. So he can't commit.

I believe only Clark, Hentges and the guy from NJ are offered to this point for 2015.

I saw a UFO told me to have a goodyear!

+12 HS
theopulas's picture

he can't commit...he wasn't offered.......


+2 HS
jonping67's picture

He's a die-hard OSU fan and they won't offer. I would be crushed and pissed too especially if I had CJ's talent.

+1 HS
clogan1032's picture

That is a non-factor. No offer=more talented people still on the board

-1 HS
RuGettinIt's picture

Would've been a Buckeye by now...I don't really understand the recruiting process, but a 4 star, in-state, diehard leave it on the field kinda of guy not getting an offer is baffling to me.  I won't be surprised when this young man burns the Buckeyes in a game down the road. 

+3 HS
Hayze's picture

The OSU staff doesn't use recruiting rankings to base their offers on.

The only way they would offer Conrad right now is if he was a take. They don't offer non-committable offers instate. Obviously he's not a take right now for OSU, and many other programs that he doesn't have offers from.

RuGettinIt's picture

High caliber prospect, Buckeye thru and thru and would be a great representative of the University.  Take him any day over the kid recently offered from Illinois.  

+1 HS
jamesrbrown322's picture

May even be a system thing, where the staff feels like there are other targets which are better fits.

"Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts." - Winston Churchill

James Mee's picture

This staff isn't about getting the best players in Ohio. They are about getting the best players nationally. It's about winning championships. I assume that they don't feel solid about his talent. If he's a diehard Buckeye I'm sure the bridge isn't burned. 

Braxton2Devin's picture

Honestly, what is holding back targets like Jerome Baker who are assumed to be locks and hardcore Buckeye fans (especially since he's from Ohio!)?! At this point last season, locks like him, especially from the great state of Ohio, would have already committed by now.

-1 HS
buckguyfan1's picture

Birm, "Don't Stop that Lov'n Feeling" for Kirk please. 

Good stuff, thanks.  Looking forward to your talk with the new RB offer. 

Killer nuts's picture

One quick question that we've all been wondering, Birm, is the sky falling or are we good?

+2 HS
kholmes's picture

Michigan just offerd Boykin this week so I wonder if that might affect Conrad's view towards Michigan also. All of the stuff I've read about Michigan with Boykin has them looking at him purely as a wide receiver. The stuff here though seems to mention TE alot with OSU's involvement with OSU looking at him more as a TE or WR eventually?

It would be nice for Conrad's sake if Hentges/Clark would make quicker decisions as it seems like Conrad needs a couple dominoes to fall before he gets the next set of offers from the schools he really wants.


+2 HS
kholmes's picture

Thanks..I guess that is pretty explicit about OSU wanting Boykin as a TE and it makes sense that Conrad wouldn't be too excited about the offer going out.

+1 HS
BuckeyeJ's picture

The sad part is that if we were all in the sec, we could offer him plus take the other 2 by over signing


+1 HS
flying-banana's picture

Birm, any insight into Tim Settle?

+2 HS
OSUMyke's picture

I don't see how as a Ohio kid you could visit a school in michidumb, when I was visiting school I was asked to come up to mSt I declined, because I would never cross the boarder unless it was to go hurt someone. If your from Ohio and you visit one of those schools. I don't even want you to come to OHIO STATE, just because you entertained the idea you are a trader.

Mike Cutlip

-11 HS
Nick's picture

If you don't get an OSU offer you might as well check out everyone else. Also why don't you want any traders at Ohio State?

+8 HS
Colerain 2004 G.O.A.T.'s picture

A trader? Or traitor? Either way you are the type of clown that makes our fan base look bad at times.

I speak the truth but I guess that's a foreign language to yall.~~Lil Wayne

+19 HS
teddyballgame's picture

I love when Michigan wants a player really bad and he does consider them but ultimately signs with the good guys...

For example, landing Damien Harris this year would be amazing.

+3 HS
ab1993's picture

As a senior in HS I visited TSUN and Florida... I, as well as these other young kids, was thinking about my future, not school rivalries in sports.

+7 HS
oregonianbuckeye's picture

Two words: Chris Spielman.

+1 HS
BIGHEC39's picture

You Mean; Two Names!


jonping67's picture

OSUMyke - Are you Chris Speilman's dad? Bye the way, I couldn't disagree with you more.

+2 HS
tussey's picture

Haughton has a real nose for the ball and I especially like when he was tracking down that receiver and popped the ball out.  There were times I wished he would have attacked a little faster in run support, but he still made the play.  

buckeyeradar's picture

I think Conrad is saying to the coaching staff, "I was in camp last year what more do I need to prove."  

I may not be the sharpest crayon in the box but I'm one of the most colorful.

+2 HS
Condor's picture

Urban must have ice water in those veins. I'd be sweating bullets right now if I were him worrying that I'd lose all 3 - Hentges, Clark and Conrad.

"Do not fear me gypsy, all I want is your tears."

 -- Borat Sagdiyev


+1 HS
RuGettinIt's picture

I think we get one of Clark or Hentges, but really hedging bets if we want 2 TEs.

BuckeyeJ's picture

Was actually thinking this myself. With Baugh seeming to get things under control, why not take another LB?

Jeremypreemo81's picture

Great to hear the news about Kirk. Getting more kids from the west coast could be really good for us 

jamesrbrown322's picture

Hate to hear about Nunez, but that's life I guess. I still think they'll get Gibson, and the question will simply be his development as a passer, rather than a "thrower" a la Pryor. 

"Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts." - Winston Churchill

bleedscarlet's picture

The lack of offers to Ohio kids is a sore spot for me but I'd like to see them take it as a challenge instead of a slight. Maybe we're seeing a bit of why Conrad wasn't offered...

Slingin' swag since 1970


pdan46's picture

The lack of offers to top ten Ohio Kids is a problem and is going to be a big problem in my opinion.  Not offering either C J Conrad or Conner makes no sense in my opinion.  We need TEs and we need LBs.  Conrad is the top TE in Ohio.  Conner is rated as the number 5 ILB in the country.  Our failure to offer either of those very good players and our insistence that they prove their worth at a camp vs non-Ohio Kids who have not even visited Ohio State does not sit well with Ohio HS Players and, I am sure, Coaches.  Why on earth are we doing this?

Other Schools, especially MSU, are feeding on this resentment and are getting very good Ohio Players to commit to MSU.  This will come back to haunt us in the future!

-1 HS
Hayze's picture

If only recruiting were a video game and the only thing that mattered were star rankings.

-1 HS
pdan46's picture

What does that mean?

We have apparently lost Clark to Michigan.  So, we are down to Hentges, who is not a certainty to commit to OSU.  Conrad is apparently extremely unhappy about being put on the back burner and is looking at MSU.  We wanted two TEs and may very likely end-up with none!  That is not a video game - that is reality!