There are a number of Friday Night Lights attendees Ohio State fans will want to familiarize themselves with. Austin Mack is one such prospect.
Mack, a 2016 four-star wide receiver prospect from Fort Wayne (Ind.), was one of the top performers at Friday Night Lights. The Buckeyes offered Mack on June 11, and the talented wideout came to FNL to demonstrate his value.
He didn't disappoint. Urban Meyer gave individual attention to strong performers throughout the night, and Meyer was seen pulling Mack out of the wide receiver group several times.
"Urban Meyer was coaching me up," Mack said after the camp. "At one point he was saying, ‘We want you bad.’ He was a receiver coach for 17 years, so he was teaching me things about running routes."
Getting the opportunity to learn from the best is something the Indiana native is not taking for granted.
"I couldn’t be any more happy. Urban Meyer is one of the best coaches in the country. Being able to have that individualized attention put on me, sometimes people overlook that in the moment. I’m so thankful for it. I'm just happy. I like Urban Meyer a lot."
Last year, Eric Glover-Williams and Damon Webb stole the show at Friday Night Lights. On Friday, Glover-Williams flipped to the defensive side of the ball to go head-to-head with Austin Mack.
Glover-Williams, an Ohio State commitment, did have some success pressing Mack. Despite going against a strong senior prospect, Mack was able to hold his own and validate his hype as one of 2016's top receivers.
"I think I performed real well," Mack said of his Friday Night Lights performance. "Eric Glover-Williams is one of the best defensive backs in the country. I went against him every time, and I think I competed well and stood out from other receivers. It was all good fun."
Friday Night Lights had a positive impact on the nation's 76th-rated prospect for 2016. Like most of the prospects in attendance, Mack was blown away by the thousands of fans that showed up to watch high school prospects work out.
"It was a great experience," he said. "The coolest part was how many fans were there for a high school event. When they were cheering, there was an echo. The coaching staff was great. Everything was prepared so well."
Michigan, Michigan State, Notre Dame and Ohio State are just a few of the schools to offer. At this early point in his recruitment, Mack is trying to give all programs a fair shot in his recruitment.
"Right now, I have a top five, but I’m just really trying to take my time and keep everything even," Mack said describing his recruiting process. "After the fall, hopefully I'll have a legit list. This is the biggest decision I have in my life at this moment. I want to be as decisive as I can."
In addition to the Buckeyes, Notre Dame and Michigan State are expected to join the final list. Mack took a second to discuss what he likes about those two programs.
On Notre Dame: "It's all about tradition. When you're walking through campus, it’s cathedral this and cathedral like. Its pretty cool. But I don’t think the atmosphere is as much competition as what Ohio State throws out there."
"The thing about Notre Dame that other schools can’t give is they have an NBC contract. They get so much exposure, its insane. The education is great. Notre Dame is a pretty neat place."
On Michigan State: "I've always been a fan of Michigan State since I started the whole recruiting circuit. I finally got that offer. Coach Dantonio is a really nice guy. I really respect him and the whole coaching staff. The guy who is the real deal there is coach Mannie, who is the strength and conditioning coach. He's super down to earth and super real."
Before Mack narrows his list down, he plans to take some visits this fall. While he doesn't have specific visit plans set up, he has some ideas of where he'll be heading this fall. "I'm going to some Notre Dame games, a couple Michigan games, Tennessee-Alabama and a couple Ohio State games," said Mack.
Even with fall visits, his junior football season takes precedence. Mack is hoping a strong season can help lead Fort Wayne Bishop Luers to an Indiana State Championship.
"1,800-plus yards," Mack said of his personal goals for this season. "A super good year will help recruiting. If I do that, I'd be a big time contributor to my team and I'd like to win a state championship."
Given Austin Mack's comments, Ohio State has a decent shot at landing the four-star prospect from Indiana. Between a scholarship offer and the individual attention given at Friday Night Lights, the Buckeyes' coaching staff has made landing Austin Mack a priority for 2016.