Full Court Press: High School Prospects Get Added Official Visits, Trayce Jackson-Davis Excludes OSU From List

By James Grega on August 10, 2018 at 1:05 pm
Chris Holtmann

Joe Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports

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Welcome to the Full Court Press, your weekly destination for offseason Ohio State basketball recruiting updates.

The NCAA released several new rules regarding agents, NBA Draft eligibility and more on Wednesday, but also made a change when it comes to the recruiting process in college hoops. 

High school prospects can now take up to 15 official visits over the course of their recruitment as compared to just five before. The new recruiting rules, which can be read in full below, go into effect Wednesday. 

Basketball student-athletes can make more frequent campus visits paid for by colleges (referred to as official visits), which can begin as soon as Aug. 1 the summer before their junior year in high school. They can take:

  • Five visits between Aug. 1 and the end of their junior year of high school.
  • Five visits between the end of their junior year and Oct. 15 after high school graduation.
  • Five visits between Oct. 15 after high school graduation and the remainder of their college eligibility.

A student-athlete can visit a school only once per year. Unofficial visits — those made at his or her own expense — cannot begin before Aug. 1 of the student’s sophomore year of high school.

Schools now can pay for 28 official visits for recruits (34 for national service academies) over a rolling, two-year period.

College programs were also granted more official visits as Div. I programs went from 24 to 28 and service academies went from 30 to 34 visits allowed over a rolling, two-year period. An official visit consists of a program paying the expenses for a prospect (and usually their family) to visit campus. Unofficial visits are made at the expense of the player's family. 

This should benefit both players and programs, and should especially work well for Ohio State, a program that has started to recruit more nationally under Chris Holtmann. Of the six 2018 prospects already on campus and 2019 commits, just two (Justin Ahrens, Alonzo Gaffney) are Ohio natives. The Buckeyes have already landed prospects from New Jersey (Luther Muhammad), Texas (Jaedon LeDee) and California (Duane Washington) and DJ Carton, who is committed to play for Ohio State in 2019, is an Iowa native. 

Buckeyes Miss Cut For Jackson-Davis

Ranked as the No. 16 overall prospect in the 2019 class, Trayce Jackson-Davis earned an offer from Ohio State after an unofficial visit on Oct. 28. However, the Buckeyes didn't make the top-6 cut for the No. 3 center in the country. 

A Greenwood, Indiana, native, Jackson-Davis has long been considered a heavy Indiana lean. Iowa, Michigan State and Purdue also cracked Jackson-Davis' top-6 from the Big Ten, with Wake Forest and UCLA the only two non-Big Ten schools on his list. 

Jackson-Davis is the second big man in as many weeks to exclude Ohio State from their list of schools they are considering, joining Texas native Drew Timme, who trimmed his list to 10 last week. 

EJ Liddell Hints at Top-5 List

Ohio State has one open spot left in the 2019 class, and its top target is expected to release a top-5 list in the coming days. 

EJ Liddell, a four-star forward from Belleville, Ill. has long been considered the Buckeyes' top target since landing Carton, and announced Aug. 6 that a top-5 would be coming soon. 

Liddell has been trending toward Ohio State ever since Carton's commitment and is scheduled to make his official visit to Columbus on Aug. 31. He will likely be in attendance for the Ohio State football season opener against Oregon State on Sept. 1. 

Should the Buckeyes lock up Liddell in the 2019 class, they could likely turn their attention to 2020, where guard play appears to be the focus. Ohio State has shown plenty of interest in Toledo product Zeb Jackson, who they offered in May, and Dominiq Penn, the son of Scoonie Penn, who was offered in October.

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