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.
MACK ON THE ROAD
Ohio State's top wide receiver target in the 2016 cycle, Fort Wayne's Austin Mack, was on the road again this past weekend. Mack was scheduled to travel to South Carolina, but did not make the trip. Mack has family ties in South Carolina, but the visit did not happen because school was not in session and he's undecided if that visit will happen at another date.
This coming weekend, Mack – and half of the Top 100 players in the country it appears – will visit Notre Dame, a key weekend for the Irish as they try to keep Indiana's top two players at home. After Notre Dame, Mack will take a few weeks for himself before his next planned trip to Columbus; he's scheduled to be at Ohio State on April 10th and then Michigan State on April 18th, which as you know, is the weekend of the Buckeye spring game.
While a visit for the Ohio State spring game would be ideal, getting Mack back on campus in the near future is a necessary thing for the Buckeyes, who have been the clear-cut leader for the country's 129th-ranked player for some time. He's seen a number of schools since his last Ohio State trip and although the Buckeyes continue to lead the pack, the gap does appear to be shrinking. A June 7th decision is still planned for Mack and his good friend Auston Robertson.
WALLACE SAYS BUCKEYES IN TOP FIVE
While the Jarrett Guarantano chase continues, the Buckeyes are not standing pat when it comes to other quarterbacks. They're expecting a visit from DeSoto, Texas 2016 standout Tristen Wallace by the end of the month and it's a visit that could go a long way towards concluding their quarterback conundrum. Wallace committed to Texas Tech in January, decommitted earlier this month and has been hinting that his recruitment could come to an end (again) sooner rather than later.
Ohio State, Baylor, Texas, Texas Tech and TCU are the five schools being listed by Wallace and being the only non-Texas school on the list puts the Buckeyes in a unique position. The 247Sports.com crystal ball for Wallace is as complicated as you'd expect it to be.
The thing is: if Wallace visits before Guarantano does, which is likely, the Buckeyes are going to be in an unenviable position. They won't know exactly how hard to press Wallace until they get a better idea of what is happening with the New Jersey star, and if Wallace wants to make a decision soon, they could potentially risk losing out on both if they're unable to balance things appropriately.
Wallace missed most of his junior season with a broken leg but he's fully recovered and the nation's third-ranked dual-threat quarterback is a good fit for Ohio State's offensive style.
KLEMM SUSPENDED FOR NCAA RULES VIOLATIONS
When Ohio State held off UCLA for the services of redshirt freshman offensive lineman Demetrius Knox, it was the Bruins' charismatic offensive line coach Adrian Klemm who was regularly mentioned as one of the draws for Knox. During his recruitment, Knox regularly commented that it was his relationship with Klemm that kept UCLA involved.
Today, Klemm – who played in the NFL with the Packers and the Patriots – was suspended by UCLA for his role in committing as-of-yet-unknown NCAA infractions.
UCLA suspends assistant coach Adrian Klemm. pic.twitter.com/23gK1piiXt— Kevin Gemmell (@Kevin_Gemmell) March 16, 2015
While it's unknown if there will be any longterm ramifications, it's worth noting that Klemm is primarily responsible for a number of the key signees in UCLA's highly-ranked 2015 recruiting class.
For what it's worth, I certainly don't mean to imply that Klemm did anything wrong related to Knox. Nothing like that has ever been hinted at, but he was a key in his recruitment.
OCEAN LAKES ADDS MORE TALENT
Virginia Beach, Virginia has long been a hotbed of athletic talent but it's been rare to see so much of it assemble at one high school as there currently is at Ocean Lakes High School.
With the recent transfer of 2018 running back Khalan Laborn Ohio State has now offered four Dolphins. 2016 defensive back Levonta Taylor could be the top overall defensive back on Ohio State's board and they recently offered 2017 stars Tahj Capehart and Eric Crosby.
It's hard to say that Ohio State will end up inking any of these four players, but they'll at least be able to get more bang for their buck during each trip to Virginia Beach.
RA'VON BONNER CONTINUES HEARING FROM BUCKEYES
In today's social media savvy generation of teenagers, it's becoming more and more rare to see a highly-ranked high school prospect speak so plainly about his favorite school. That is not stopping Sycamore (Cincinnati) High School 2017 running back Ra'Von Bonner. Bonner has been very clear on social media: he wants to be a Buckeye.
This is in order Top 3 schools: 1) Ohio State 2) Alabama 3) Clemson I don't see the #1 choice changing! - H! pic.twitter.com/cMXvohghWF— Ra'Vn Bnner (@cantguardray_21) February 24, 2015
Bonner's road to Ohio State won't be easy – the Buckeyes have already offered 2017 in-state running back Todd Sibley, Jr. – but he's been hearing from the Buckeyes regularly.
When @OSUCoachMeyer says "we're very interested in you" That is just so surreal! Make room Columbus, I will be joining the dynasty soon! -H— Ra'Vn Bnner (@cantguardray_21) March 5, 2015
Bonner says he'd been hearing from the Buckeyes for a while, usually defensive backs coach Kerry Coombs, but that conversation with Meyer struck a chord with him. He told 11W that if an offer from Ohio State were to come his way, he'd have a tough time not committing immediately.
"(Meyer) told me they were very interested," Bonner told 11W. "He told me he thinks I'm one heck of a player. Being in love with Ohio State, I'd probably commit right away if they offered. My family loves it, and I love it. I want to play early, but I also want to play for Ohio State, so I'd probably commit to them."
Bonner has one offer right now – from Cincinnati – but has also been hearing from Tennessee and Michigan State.