Guarantano, Haskins Still Lead the 2016 Quarterback Derby

By Mike Rockstedt on October 27, 2014 at 3:15 pm
New Jersey's Jarrett Guarantano
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Quarterback recruiting has a pretty tight number requirement attached to it. A team can recruit up to five or six offensive linemen in a class, but in any given year there's only room for one or two quarterbacks. When a team fills that room, it's time to start looking at future prospects.

Ohio State has Joe Burrow as its 2015 quarterback, and the Buckeyes are reserving room for a second quarterback in case Torrance Gibson commits to OSU. At this point, the Buckeyes are looking at the 2016 class for more signal callers.

OSU has two 2016 prospects at the top of its big board: Dwayne Haskins and Jarrett Guarantano. Depending on how the 2015 class shakes out, there may only be room for one.

DWAYNE HASKINS

The Buckeyes have had their eyes on Dwayne Haskins for a while. A strong-armed quarterback from Potomac, Md., Haskins has shown some affection for Ohio State. The coaching staff has returned that love, letting him know that he is a priority for the class. However, it seems that some other schools are giving Ohio State some trouble.

For months, Haskins' crystal ball predictions were unanimous that he would commit to Ohio State. Over the last few weeks, though, some pundits have switched their prediction to Penn State. It seems Ohio State's victory on Saturday Night did little to undermine James Franklin's recruiting mojo.

I'm not entirely comfortable switching my pick away from Haskins; he visited Columbus for the Cincinnati game, and he saw the Buckeyes again when they played Maryland. But I'm not entirely confident in the pick either, as Eleven Warriors' Jeremy Birmingham is one of those who has already switched his prediction.

I'm switching my prediction: I think Haskins will commit to the Nittany Lions over the Buckeyes. if he does, it's more evidence that Franklin is turning Penn State into Ohio State's biggest recruiting foe.

JARRETT GUARANTANO

Another top tier quarterback considering Ohio State is New Jersey star Jarrett Guarantano. One of the top signal callers in the country, Guarantano has offers from all the big schools. In August, he named a final four of Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State and Oklahoma.

Guarantano is no stranger to Ohio State. He attended an OSU camp in June, and he is planning on making a return visit for the Illinois game on Nov. 1. Guarantano has already visited Alabama and Oklahoma for non-camp visits, leaving Clemson as his only school without a visit taken or planned.

Guarantano likes Ohio State, and if the visit goes well the Buckeyes could be in great position to land him. The timing of the visit is important, as he is hoping to make a decision after the season. If Ohio State is Guarantano's last official visit, that could be good news for the Buckeyes.

EARLY PREDICTION?

Birm and I both think the 2016 quarterback will be Guarantano. Both he and Haskins like Ohio State, but Penn State is breathing down OSU's neck for Haskins. I don't see any serious threats to Ohio State for Guarantano's commitment, and if he picks first he'll be the quarterback of the 2016 class.

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