The Hurry Up is your nightcap of Ohio State recruiting news, catching you up on the day’s events with an ear on the ground for what’s next.
WALKER'S VISIT TO OHIO STATE A SUCCESS
As expected, Kareem Walker left Ohio State this afternoon after spending two days in Columbus with his coach. Walker departed earlier today around 1:00 p.m. and his final day on campus included some face time with Tony Alford and a visit to Ohio Stadium.
Believe in the plan... Work Hard... You'll be successful— AlightyReem (@_KareemWalker) August 5, 2015
As you can see from Walker's Tuesday night tweet, things went well. That tweet isn't vague or just cutesy word play, that's the message from this trip to Ohio.
The plan has not changed since Ohio State first really began recruiting the country's top-ranked tailback: get to campus as soon as possible and believe in the path the coaches have set for him. Work hard to make sure that once he's arrived in Columbus officially there are no wasted days, work hard to capitalize on the opportunity for early playing time that will be in front of him and the success will come.
The frame of mind for Walker is the right one and the Buckeyes took the time to underline his place in their future and all is well. Will he make more visits elsewhere? I'd be surprised if he didn't, but as I've said for a while now, in the end, Walker is likely to end up a Buckeye and probably in January as an early-enrollee.
SWEATING THE SMALL STUFF
So...earlier today I alluded to another possible change (read: subtraction) from the Buckeyes' top-ranked 2016 recruiting class. I realize that the "hit and run" kind of post isn't always the best idea, but a couple of factors made it important to at least let it be known that things could be happening in the near future. It's my job, first of all, to inform you all of what I can inform you, when I can inform you. It's not always the full story, and that's designed to protect recruits, their families and the schools that are recruiting them.
Occasionally, news that I don't really want to publish – such as the Terrell Hall news from yesterday – has to be get put into public domain. As I said on Monday night, when it was permissible, I'd tell you the "rest of the story" and that's what happened yesterday, despite the blowback from others trying to refute the things I (and others) were told as absolute fact by a number of very trustworthy and very connected sources. Occasionally, there's news that I feel the need to hint at in order to make sure you all know that something could be coming down the pike because I don't want to have it be a total surprise and sometimes it's because a story is still developing and releasing more details would be irresponsible.
As for this morning's "tease" I will not say much more until the time is right but I think – and I realize this sounds hypocritical – it's important to not turn this into a guessing game or throw a bunch of names out there hoping one sticks. There's 19 commitments in the Buckeyes' 2016 class and there's not much value in creating narratives around each one to "explain" why it could be so-and-so. The news will be out there for everyone to consume soon I imagine, and at that point, I promise I will give you all that I can.
SOUTH MOVING ON UP
Earlier today I stopped by Westerville South High School and had a chance to check out the Wildcats as they prepare for what should be a successful 2015 season. Last week, I talked to Marcus Williamson, a two-way star for South about the outlook for the year and he wasn't shy about expectations being high.
"I think we're closer as a team than ever and our realistic goal is to win every game," Williamson said. "We've got too much talent (to lose)."
As I walked around the field today, the first thing I noticed was that the Wildcats have a lot of athletes not named Jaelen Gill and Marcus Williamson, who most people here are aware of.
Jordan Humphrey is a potential steal in the 2016 class. He's a prospect who's drawing interest at wide receiver from Purdue and others, but a good senior season could see him garner more attention as the seasons turn. Humphrey is 6-foot-3 and a solid 180-pounds and – as a talented basketball player – is athletic, fluid and has excellent burst. He may not be the most technically sound football player at this point (he missed most of his pivotal junior season with injuries) but he's got the frame and athletic ability people will take a chance on.
Northwestern commitment Gunnar Vogel is a big, long-armed offensive tackle who moves well and plays with excellent balance. The 6-foot-6, 285-pounder will anchor the Wildcats' offensive line and provide excellent backside protection for Westerville's quarterback, who is yet to be determined.
Linebacker Christian Nkansah-Wiafe is a name to watch in the 2017 class, thanks in part to his speed. Illinois, Toledo and Bowling Green have all offered the 6-foot-tall linebacker who runs sub 4.6 regularly according to his coach, Kyle Stout.
JORDAN CLEARS UP SPECULATION
One name that was brought up over the last few days as a possible "wavering" candidate in Ohio State's 2016 class is Canton, Michigan's Michael Jordan. Jordan's name was thrown into the mix because someone on Twitter last week started speculating that he'd take a visit to Michigan for their "BBQ at the Big House" this past Sunday. While I tried to debunk the rumor on Twitter, thanks in part to one assistant coach at Plymouth High School, it persisted even through Sunday despite no one seeing Jordan on hand. It even carried into today.
Thinking it best to let him speak for himself, I asked Jordan about it and here's what he he had to say.
"The rumors (about going to visit Michigan) are not true, I did not go," Jordan said. "I am 150-percent committed to Ohio State."
Jordan added that he's got plans for a trip to Columbus soon and he's looking forward to spending time with his future teammates.
"The first home game (against Hawaii) will be my next trip," he added, then said of his relationships with the fellow commits. "It's great. We've got a group chat and we're all connected."