Friday Night Lights: Moore's Commitment, Conrad Storyline Highlight Intriguing Night

By Jeremy Birmingham on July 25, 2014 at 11:40p

Friday Night Lights got off to a pretty good start for the Buckeyes when Olathe, Kansas tight end Josh Moore committed to Ohio State somewhat unexpectedly as the evening got underway.

From there, the good times rolled under the newly-installed stadium lights at Ohio Stadium and eventually, culminated in another commitment, from another Josh. This time, it was Detroit Cass Tech two-way lineman Joshua Alabi who decided to become a Buckeye.

What happened in the meantime? Let's take a quick look back at the night that was in Columbus.

With apologies to Torrance Gibson, the most intriguing story of the evening was the decision by Ohio tight end C.J. Conrad to attend Friday Night Lights. Conrad, the country's 10th-ranked tight end, committed to Kentucky two months ago but the Buckeyes have remained in steady contact. The lifelong Buckeye fan decided at the last moment to attend and told 11W it was a "business trip" and that it was something he had to do. 

His performance was hit-and-miss, and with the Buckeyes accepting the commitment of Moore prior to the event, it's unsure where things go from here. Conrad, as well as other tight ends, has been told the Buckeyes would still like to take a pair of tight ends in 2015, so the window is not closed. He did not, however, go out and blow the doors off the Horseshoe.

Whether the offer comes or not, Conrad needs to be commended for putting himself out there and doing whatever it takes to get to where he wants to be. He's a great kid and the type of person you'd want on your team each and every day.

Torrance Gibson, as you'd imagine, was a pretty big storyline heading into the event and then during Friday Night Lights. He surprised many by working out for the Buckeyes and it appears he was having a great time in Columbus.

Although Gibson's decision to work out at quarterback will certainly open him up for criticism about his technical proficiency, it does say a lot about him as as competitor. With nothing to prove, he could have just spent his time in Columbus being a spectator. Still, the doubts remain about his ability to be a consistent collegiate quarterback.

Still, the enthusiasm and infectious personality Gibson is known for was visible. 

After the event, Gibson got the full-court press from one of the Buckeyes' most official unofficial recruiters: Stacy Elliott, the father of sophomore tailback Ezekiel.

Whether or not the Buckeyes eventually sign the enigmatic social media star, they've made a big move forward in his recruitment and will continue to be involved. He'll be in Columbus until Sunday, giving Ohio State and Urban Meyer a shot to really dig in.

During the event, Urban Meyer and his staff spent as much time as possible with a number of potential targets, including 2016 wide receiver Austin Mack. Mack, from Fort Wayne, Indiana, could be the best wideout in the midwest in his class and got special attention from Ohio State's big kahuna tonight.

One of the key performances of the night was from a player Mack went head-to-head with directly a few times, Buckeye commitment Eric Glover-Williams.  

Last year, "EGW" showed up to FNL in a Superman t-shirt and went on to steal the show with his electrifying athleticism on the offensive side of the ball. This year, after months of turmoil and rumors he might end up being removed from his spot at Ohio State, Glover-Williams stayed low-profile and let his performance do the talking: on defense.

Following the camp, Glover-Williams spoke to some media members about his situation with the Buckeyes. He was succinct and to the point.

Memphis, Tennessee four-star offensive lineman Drew Richmond got to Columbus this afternoon and spent a lot of time with a number of Buckeye commitments and players. Richmond and redshirt wide receiver Jalin Marshall has become especially good friends over the last year. Although many think Richmond is leaning towards Tennessee, he continues to keep the Buckeyes right at the top of this list. 

One of the more intriguing wide receiver prospects in attendance, Maryland's Lawrence Cager, walked away from Ohio Stadium with a big offer from the Buckeyes. 

Cager has picked up offers from Alabama and Tennessee in the last week, but has been quoted as saying a Buckeye offer meant they'd catapult to the top of his list. He could be close to becoming the next member of the "Elite '15."

One of the real joys of a camp like Friday Night Lights, is the chance for less known players to stand out in front of a crowd. Miami, Florida's Carlton Davis got a lot of attention tonight.

The Buckeyes also offered a 2016 offensive lineman who has been, up until now, a bit under the radar.

They also extended an offer to Gahanna 2016 star Jonathon Cooper, a speed-rushing defensive end that is absolutely going on commit watch. 

Cass Tech, the Buckeyes' newest pipeline in Michigan after Alabi's commitment, picked up another Ohio State offer minutes later. This time it's 2016 defensive back Lavert Hill.

Eleven Warriors will continue to bring you more from Friday Night Lights throughout the weekend, so stay with us and check back on this story often as new updates will be added.


Comments Show All Comments

Fly Patterns's picture

My head is spinning. What an event.

+6 HS
The Rill Dill's picture

One whale of an event, for sure!!  It will now be a 'must attend' event for me.  DO NOT MISS attending!!  You'll be sorry if you do!!

MN Buckeye's picture

Thanks for pulling it all together, Jeremy. What a beautiful, surprising night!

+3 HS
Bucks1's picture

Wow, nice work pulling that together so quickly!

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

+3 HS
Fly Patterns's picture

Birm this is a terrific write up. And great job to the other 11w'ers who had boots on the ground like gangbusters. This was tons of fun and exciting to follow because of you guys.

+6 HS
sivaDavis's picture

Reading that Gibson just told Tim May that Buckeye fans are going to be really happy with his new ratings.

Edit: Also saw that Miles Joseph and our very own Jordan Wagner, tweeted out the same thing earlier than May. I'm not really good at citing sources so I'll just pull a Broussard and say Multiple Sources. #davebiddleisprobablypissed

"I've had smarter people around me all my life, but I haven't run into one yet that can outwork me. And if they can't outwork you, then smarts aren't going to do them much good." - Woody Hayes

+19 HS
Jeremy Birmingham's picture
Findog5's picture

This was an incredible night. A tradition was started with my father tonight. We will be back for this every year!  Unbelievable talent. Loved the new lights. 

Raleigh Buckeye

+12 HS
teddyballgame's picture
+5 HS
2002osubuck's picture

Whoa that was awesome. So much going on with commits and offers can't wait for the season. Hope Cager commits soon, dudes a beast. Did someone say Josh Sweat showed up late? 

+2 HS
Crimson's picture

Nice mouseover.

+3 HS
Soggy_McMuffin's picture

West Coast Buckeye Love!!


+1 HS
keeponbraxtonmebabe's picture

Do any other schools put on an event like FNL? At least in the midwest. 

+1 HS
CC's picture

Yes most now have something similar, UF still has fnl 

-1 HS
HighBallAce's picture

Why do I have a feeling that somewhere down the line there will be a Cass Tech kid who will end up being a 5 star who commits to Ohio State?

+3 HS
Hovenaut's picture

Stellar job by the 11W folks for keeping tabs on all the activity.

Much appreciated, gents.

+1 HS
osu407's picture

I'm glad Cooper got an offer tonight.  I hoped we wouldn't wait too long on him.

+2 HS
Casey_Stidham6's picture

Does anyone know how 2016 wide receiver Ruben Flowers from Lima, Ohio performed? Thanks!

Casey Stidham

tdible2132's picture

Any word on if Layne the WR got an offer?

+1 HS
BuckWylde's picture

Seems like a loooong time ago that some of us Buckeye fans were gettin' a little itchy when there was somewhat of a lull in recruiting commits, but man, . . . it sounds like we might approach double digit numbers from this weekend's event--GO BUCKS!!!!!

All progress has resulted from people who took unpopular positions. -Adlai Stevenson, governor, US ambassador

+2 HS
James Mee's picture

What a great way to spend a Friday night. Got to spend it watching some great recruits and got to see Braxton like two feet away from me, which is always awesome. 

+1 HS
BuckeyeGroove's picture

Can you tell me how much it cost you to get into the event? Just curious , thinking about trying to attend next year. Thanks

We beat Bama, and Indiana beat Mizzou! 

Crimson's picture

Ummm, how about $20?  I'll give you the address to send it to :)

+1 HS
sivaDavis's picture

"I've had smarter people around me all my life, but I haven't run into one yet that can outwork me. And if they can't outwork you, then smarts aren't going to do them much good." - Woody Hayes

+9 HS
irishfury's picture

I love this site.  Awesome write up going to click me some advertisment links.

+5 HS
Dougger's picture

Great work you guys. The highlight video they put up against Michigan that ended with "Legends never die" sent chills through my body and was epic. Fun, fun event. 

I like football

+2 HS
Jabba1977's picture

What an awesome night,I cannot wait to see who commits next!!!


Fly Patterns's picture

I didn't see Carlton Davis in any of the write ups heading into tonight. What's up with him?

Poison nuts's picture

So much good stuff Jeremy! Looking forward to more info related to tonight & specifically anything more on if Conrad & does/did get the offer, how Joe Burrow looked at QB, & if Gibson effects him in any way good or bad, news on players currently visiting, including Gibson, how Danny Clark looked at QB, and anything else that may have come from tonight. I usually don't care to worry about a class that is 2 years away from being signed, but damn if the 2016 doesn't look like UFM will have his coveted #1 recruiting's going to be an insane class either way.

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

+1 HS
BigZ's picture

Does Gibson become a 3* if he commits to the Buckeyes? Is that how it works?


+6 HS
cinserious's picture

Stacy Elliott is THE MAN!

Every time I hear his name come up, I realize more and more what an asset he is to Buckeye recruiting.

One day I will valiantly become a political prisoner of 11W jail.

+10 HS
TossTrap's picture

Yep, one hell of a guy. Great article about him at

First and goal at the five and Arch is getting the ball.

MotownBuck's picture

Anybody else catch that "warrior workout" video they played?? Wow! Talk about bringing the juice! If anyone finds a clip of that online, PLEASE post!  Guaranteed to have you guys run through a wall. Rebuild it. Then run through it again!

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

+4 HS
Bucksfan70's picture

hell yeah, i want to see it! someone post it if you got it!

“Today I will do what others won't, so tomorrow I can accomplish what others can't.” - Jerry Rice

+2 HS
Bloombergl's picture

As an out of towner Buckeye fan, THANK YOU for keeping us up to speed.  Phenomenal coverage as well as posts from those who were at the 'shoe!  Wish I were there too.  Go bucks.

+2 HS
FairfaxBuckeye's picture

Fantastic coverage by 11w for Friday Night Lights 2014!  Thank you!!  It's much appreciated. 

rdubs's picture

I'll take this combo, you can even hold the fries with this one because I'm not greedy:


+3 HS
Belliott's picture

Anyone have anything about the whitehead/Meyer conversation that ended with a Meyer fist pump?  I feel like he's not the kind of coach to do that after just finishing any old conversation.  

+1 HS
KBonay's picture

Yes...that was tweeted but no follow up on it. Love to hear what that was about. 

BroJim's picture

All good things.

I season my simple food with hunger

-1 HS
DC-town's picture

Big shout to the 11w staff for all the coverage.  About a month away, the countdown is on

'Piss excellence' -RB

+3 HS
buckeyeradar's picture

I'm 65 and feel like putting on the pads and hitting someone.......... BOOM!  Put me in coach!

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

+2 HS
rjsmitty's picture

Two commits from FNL? That waterfall is working its magic mojo already!

"I don't wanna coach average! To hell with that!"  -UFM

buckeyedude's picture

I have to admit that I soured on Gibson after his "troubles." But I love the kid's enthusiasm! I now hope he does commit to the Buckeyes and have a gut feeling that we got him. I really wish TG would play wide receiver though.



AlwayzABuckeye614's picture

Is there any film on the EGW vs Mack matchup in the 1 on 1's? I left just before that and missed it :/

mtrotb's picture

That was awesome.  Every time it was Mack's turn, he called over to Williams to defend him.  Mack has great hands.


KingsRite's picture

“I have yet to be in a game where luck was involved. Well-prepared players make plays. I have yet to be in a game where the most prepared team didn't win.” -Urban Meyer-