Recruiting is said to be the lifeblood of college football. This series will countdown the top 100 high schools in Ohio that have provided the Buckeyes with football players. The rankings are based on how many times a player from each high school has been listed on Ohio State's roster between 1970 and 2018.
No. 88, Lakewood
Four players from Lakewood have been listed on 11 Ohio State rosters. Pete Cusick was the first, and best, Ranger to play in Columbus. The defensive tackle was a captain for the 1974 team and was an All-American and two-time All-Big Ten player. In 2000, he was named to the Ohio State All-Century Team and was inducted into the Ohio State Athletics Hall of Fame in 2012.
During his playing days at Ohio State, Cusick was considered the strongest man on the team. Opposing teams had a hard time blocking him because of his strength and quickness. Cusick recorded 242 career tackles, including 22 tackles-for-loss over three seasons. He was selected in the third round of the 1975 NFL Draft by the Green Bay Packers.
The other Lakewood players on Ohio State's roster were LB Greg Belko (1975), QB Michael Strahine (1976-79) and OG Ken Voll (1986-88). At Ohio State, Strahine earned varsity letters in both baseball and football. He was a career backup for the football team. At Lakewood, Strahine was the captain of the football and scored 30 career touchdowns. He was also the captain of the baseball team.
Back To School
Lakewood is located in Cuyahoga County and is a member of the Southwestern Conference. The team currently competes in Division II, Region 6. Of late, the Rangers have been a very bad team. Over the last six seasons, the program has 6 wins and 54 losses. Lakewood went winless in 2016 and 1–9 four times between 2013 and 2018. The last time the program made the playoffs was 2003. The Rangers lost to Mentor, 0-24, in the first round.
Lakewood has 13 state championships, but none of them are for football. Almost a century ago, the boys' track and field team dominated and won five titles (1922, 1923, 1924, 1926, 1931). The boys' cross country team was also strong, winning state championships in 1928, 1929, 1932 and 1953. The boys' swimming team has three titles (1928, 1929, 1962), wrestling has one (1948) and girls' gymnastics one (1979).
Off of the field, Lakewood is know for its Barnstormers Drama Club, alternative rock orchestra called Lakewood Project and the marching band. The marching band performed at the 2000 BCS National Championship Game and 2003 Outback Bowl.
Explanation of the Rankings
School "A" had 14 players appear 16 times on Ohio State's roster. School "B" had 11 players appear 20 times on Ohio State's roster. School "B" will have the higher ranking. Why? Even though school "B" has less players, those players played for more years.
If two or more schools have the same number of appearances, the tie will be broken by the school with the highest average of roster appearances per player. If there is a tie in the average, the tie breaker will be the school with the most prominent Ohio State player.
2,747 days since Ohio State has not defeated That Team.
178 days until The Game.
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