Welcome to The Hurry-Up, which runs Sunday through Thursday, serving as your last stop for recruiting news and notes nightly. We'll recap the day as it happened and preview the days ahead while keeping our ear to the ground on the Ohio State recruiting scene.
FEDER CONTINUING TO GAIN ATTENTION
Hard to imagine that at 6-foot-9 and over 300-pounds, Kevin Feder isn't likely used to the concept of being "unnoticed," but the Ohio State commitment from Don Bosco Prep in Ramsey, New Jersey has managed to avoid too much media spotlight. As he didn't play much his junior year due to a broken leg, Feder's national ranking has been a cause of concern for Buckeye fans who worry more about stars than in-person coach's evaluations. Today, Rivals.com updated their state-by-state rankings and Feder's new position should ease some (unnecessary) concerns.
— Six Nine (@Kevin_feder) September 3, 2014
Now, as the country's 87th-ranked prospect according to Rivals, the "stars" are aligning for the former Miami Hurricane commitment.
HINES RELEASES TOP SEVEN
One of the country's most fleet-footed prospects, Nyheim Hines from Garner, North Carolina released his top schools list tonight via Twitter.
Here's my top 7 schools. Thank you to every school that has offered me. You all have made this journey worth while. pic.twitter.com/y1RdJcyWSb
— Nyheim Hines (@TheNyNy2) September 3, 2014
As you can see, the Buckeyes made the cut for the all-purpose running back who is ranked third nationally at his position. Hines visited Ohio State in late May, and many have him pegged to stay closer to home, but the Buckeyes continue to pursue him aggressively as another potential offensive option.
SPEAIGHT TURNING GREEN?
St. Vincent-St. Mary is usually a stomping ground for Ohio State when it comes to recruiting. That could be changing with 2016 athlete Tyrece Speaight. Speaight said he has not been in contact with the coaches all that much but he still receives mail. He lists Michigan State as his favorite and loves how interested they are in him.
"Their interest really intrigued me," Speaight told Eleven Warriors. "Talking to the coaches, they seem really interested."
Although Speaight does not yet hold any offers, they will roll in during the season. There is still a long way to go in this one, but Michigan State has done good work early after their in-state rivals in Ann Arbor held the early lead.
INTRO: DEMARI SIMPKINS
Ohio State has been in contact with 2016 QB Demari Simpkins. The 6-foot, 170-pound dual threat quarterback holds an early offer from Akron, but other schools have been showing interest.
"There are schools out there such as Clemson, James Madison, Marshall, Ohio State, and South Florida, that have been showing more interest," Simpkins told 11W. "The most difficult offer to turn down, would definitely be Ohio State." If Simpkins blows up and some of the bigger names on the board go elsewhere, look for Ohio State to jump in.
TUCKY MOST LIKELY VISITING FOR KENT STATE GAME
Rutherford B Hayes standout linebacker Ethan Tucky is most likely coming to the Kent State game on Sept. 13. The class of 2016 prospect holds some early offers from Boston College, Eastern Michigan, and Toledo, but Ohio State has been showing a lot of interest.
"I have gotten a ton of mail from Ohio State," Tucky said. "It has been difficult to talk to them because of how busy I am during the season, but I am so excited to watch them play. I can't wait to see where things go with them."
Tucky, one of the state's fastest linebackers ( he proved it by winning some of the speed competitions during the Ohio State camp season) is still waiting for a Buckeye offer. Ohio State's coaching staff has been clear: it's a matter of the staff needing to see more football tape, and these next few weeks are key for him. He'll be a popular guy soon, and I like Ohio State's chances to land the talented prospect if they decide to pull the trigger on an offer.
JARRETT GUARANTANO VISITING OHIO STATE NOVEMBER 1
As though it weren't interesting before, the quarterback situation is getting even more complicated. Bergen Catholic quarterback Jarrett Guarantano is visiting Ohio State for the Illinois game in November before a visit to Oklahoma next weekend. The Sooners are the dark horse to beat out Ohio State for Guarantano's services; if Oklahoma impresses him then, look for them to become the new leader.
According to Guarantano and sources close to him, Ohio State is still holding a slight lead in his recruitment, but I'd put my money on Oklahoma if he had to decide today. Is it a race to commit first for Guarantano and Dwayne Haskins? I don't think so, I think this plays out Guarantano to Oklahoma, Haskins to Ohio State and Malik Henry (who has the Buckeye in his top four) to Notre Dame.
D-DAY FOR RICHMOND, BAD NEWS FOR BUCKEYES?
As his long-chosen date for an announcement — September 9th — approaches, Drew Richmond says he's on track to make a decision.
I will be committing next Tuesday, September 9th at MUS. If any media would like to attend please contact Rebecca Greer at 901-260-1348
— Drew Richmond (@TheDream_75) September 3, 2014
At this point, all signs and sources are indicating Ole Miss is Richmond's likely choice next Tuesday, but that doesn't mean things are over-and-done with for the Memphis star. He told 11W he's still planning an official visit with the Buckeyes and it will take place November 29th against Michigan. There is work to be done if Ohio State wants to see Richmond's name in their fax machine come February, but they'll still get a shot.
So, two weeks ago Mickey Mitchell, the brother of former Buckeye lineman Mike Mitchell, decided to decommit from Ohio State after nearly a year in the "committed" column. Now, two weeks later, he's making a visit to Columbus with Buckeye pledge Austin Grandstaff.
Columbus tomorrow with @MickeyMitchell0
— Austin Grandstaff (@AustinGstaff1) September 3, 2014
Recruiting sure is funny, isn't it? It's important to note that it's not like these kids and the coaches at the schools they talk to are "breaking up," they're professionals and continue to cultivate relationships even after decisions, even decommitments, are made.
The trip this weekend was not impromptu or something that required any prodding from his friend Grandstaff, however.
"He's had this trip planned," Grandstaff told 11W. "I didn't need to try and convince him to come along."
Speaking of basketball and the 2015 recruiting class, the Buckeyes will get a big visit from a big-time in-state player next week, according to Cleveland.com. Esa Ahmad will reportedly make a trip to Columbus.
Esa Ahmad will visit West Virginia this weekend and Ohio State next weekend.
— David Cassilo (@dcassilo) September 3, 2014
PATRICK SETS DECISION DATE
Orlando, Florida four-star running back Jacques Patrick is one of many big-time prospects who will be on hand in Columbus this weekend. The Buckeyes official visit will be the first for Patrick, but if history is any indicator, he's already made up his mind about a school choice. Why? Because he set up a commitment date, last night.
Or did he?
Patrick tweeted that he'd make his decision on October 27th, but that tweet has since been deleted. Florida State is the presumed leader for the 6-foot-2, 230 pound tailback from Timber Creek. If you recall, the Buckeyes are trying hard to get into the Patrick business; they offered his brother Peter, an eighth-grader, three weeks ago.