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.
ONWENU TALKS BUCKEYES
For quite some time, Detroit Cass Tech's Michael Onwenu has listed Ohio State as the team at the top of his list. The 6-foot-2, 310-pound two-way lineman, who recently added a scholarship offer from Alabama, was reportedly upset by how things transpired between Mike Weber and Ohio State. Although he denies that there's any lingering feelings on the matter, it's clear that something has changed between the two parties.
"I'm not bothered (by what happened)," Onwenu told 11W. "But I haven't talked to Ohio State in a while."
By "Ohio State" Onwenu means Buckeyes assistant coach Kerry Coombs, who recruits the Detroit area for the national champs. The country's 5th-ranked offensive guard (although Ohio State is recruiting him as a defensive tackle) clarified the situation.
"(Coombs) just has not been having personal conversations," he added. "He sends little stuff about Ohio State."
Michigan is the most likely competition for Onwenu, and the Cass Tech star visited Ann Arbor last week with a number of Detroit's top players.
NEW OFFER ZECHARIAH MCPHEARSON ANXIOUS TO VISIT
One of the more recent 2016 prospects to add a Buckeye offer is Zechariah McPhearson from Upper Marlboro, Maryland. McPhearson is a 6-foot-1, 180-pound four-star defensive back from Riverdale Baptist School and the country's 33rd-ranked corner. He holds offers from Clemson, Kentucky, Michigan State, Boston College and others, but says the Buckeye offer is obviously different.
"Ohio State is definitely in my top five schools," McPhearson told Eleven Warriors. "I'm really just starting the process."
McPhearson has visited Wake Forest, Penn State and Maryland, but says a trip to Columbus is forthcoming.
"Coach Larry Johnson is the one who offered," he said. "Their interest is recent, our relationship is still growing. I'm trying to go to their spring game, but if not I'll visit there this summer. I really want to go visit. I've heard when it's a packed house you can really feel the vibe from the crowd."
With a recent 40-yard-dash timed at 4.49, it's not a surprise that McPhearson's speed is one of the primary reasons the Buckeyes extended an offer.
"(Coach Johnson) said they liked my speed and how I can make big plays," McPhearson added. "But I'm an athlete who can play both sides of the ball and special teams, too."
CARLOS BECKER III ADDS TWO BIG OFFERS
Another recent offer, Kissimmee, Florida's Carlos Becker III, says the Buckeyes play the defensive style he likes.
"Coach (Tony) Alford offered," Becker told 11W. "It was kind of out of the blue. I like them, and I like their defense."
At 6-foot-3 and 185 pounds, Becker is another in a long line of taller defensive backs who've earned Buckeye attention. Usually that means the discussion about a position change isn't far behind.
"I only know how to play cornerback," he said. "That's all I'm interested in playing."
Taller cornerbacks are a staple of a Chris Ash defense and Becker says he'd like to get up to Columbus for a visit. He doesn't have any favorites, but the Osceola star has started to see a few schools on his list.
"I've been to North Carolina State, Duke, North Carolina and South Carolina," he added. "I'm hoping to see more."
Ohio State's top 2016 quarterback target, Jarrett Guarantano, picked up another big offer yesterday when Notre Dame made their pitch.
Received an offer from Notre Dame today ! #FightingIrish pic.twitter.com/wi5jQadPiq— Jarrett Guarantano (@Guarantano18) February 26, 2015
The Buckeyes are still anxiously – and actively – pursuing Guarantano, but the longer he waits to make a decision the harder the fight becomes. Notre Dame succeeded in extracting New Jersey's top quarterback in 2015 (Brandon Wimbush) and now have entered the fray for Guarantano, who is also still seriously considering Rutgers and Tennessee.
For their part the Buckeyes are hoping they'll see the country's 6th-ranked quarterback on their campus soon, potentially in one of the next three weekends. It seems likely that if he arranges a trip to Columbus that one could also take place to South Bend, Knoxville or both.