The Hurry Up: Jordan Fuller, Damar Hamlin and Others; Reviewing the Huge Official Visit Weekend in Columbus

By Jeremy Birmingham on January 17, 2016 at 7:45 pm
Walnut Ridge athlete Malik Harrison and Urban Meyer
Malik Harrison

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.

There's no point in too much introductory banter, I know why you're here. You want to know what the feeling is coming out of Columbus following the weekend's big visits for the Buckeyes. 


We'll start with the lone Buckeye commitment that visited this weekend...


The first Ohio State defensive back target in the 2016 class to commit to the Buckeyes, Maryland's Kareem Felder made his first trip to Columbus since July's Friday Night Lights. He was expected to make his official visit in December with the bulk of Ohio State's 2016 recruiting class, but was unable to get the weekend free, so he was there this weekend and the timing may have worked out in the Buckeyes' benefit.

The weekend, according to Felder, was just what he needed.

"It was definitely good to be back there," Felder told 11W. "It was great as always."

Aside from taking advantage of a chance to hang out with the seven early-enrollees on campus, Felder put on his recruiting hat this weekend and spent a lot of time with fellow Maryland-native Keandre Jones.

Keandre Jones and Kareem Felder
Maryland commitment Keandre Jones (left) and Ohio State verbal Kareem Felder.

"I spent a lot of time with (Keandre)," Felder said. "He's a good dude. We're both from Maryland and have played against each other but that was my first time meeting him. He's exactly what Ohio State is looking for and we want him bad."


Of all the players visiting this weekend, Hardman, a five-star athlete from Elberton, Georgia, was the least likely to end up a Buckeye come signing day and I don't think that has really changed despite a number of different sources suggesting the visit went great.

Hardman, for his part, didn't waste any time putting his thoughts on the trip into the social media realm.

Although he told 11W last week the cold was not an issue for him, the inclusion of a weather-related comment #makesyouthinkforsure. 

As far as Hardman's visit I was told that the Buckeyes feel they've "got a chance," albeit not a great one, to be the choice come signing day. Considering they weren't in Hardman's Top 6 schools on Jan. 1, that's a pretty good move.

Hardman was scheduled to visit TCU next weekend but will instead make a trip to Alabama, the school he named as his favorite just a few days ago.


Jordan Fuller's trip to Ohio State was a huge one for the Buckeyes. They've been trying to get the New Jersey athlete, who at one time listed Ohio State as his favorite, on campus again for a long time now and this weekend he was able to bring his parents, an important piece of the puzzle for the talented defensive back. Coming into the trip, Fuller said he was anxious to spend some time on campus and getting to know the players and in the Buckeyes' program. After the trip, Fuller said every question about Ohio State in his mind is answered.

"I've got no real concerns or worries," Fuller said of Ohio State. "My parents (feel the same way) too. We just want honesty. (That's what stood out) I know they keep it 100 with everybody. That's what the players told me and I liked the players a lot."

Next weekend Fuller will go to Michigan for an official visit with Jim Harbaugh and the Wolverines. Michigan's presence in New Jersey has been well-documented and Fuller admits there's a bit of a pull because of that.

"I have a sense of pride for Jersey," Fuller told Eleven Warriors. "The fact that they believe in it is really cool. It does mean something but I wouldn't say (it means) a lot."

Ohio State is where my crystal ball is for Fuller.

I think that's where it will stay, regardless of his upcoming visit to Ann Arbor. 


Reports from Ohio State indicate that the Buckeyes, specifically Luke Fickell, have done and continue to do an incredible job recruiting Hamlin and his entire family.

The Buckeyes come out of this weekend truly believing that they're right in the mix with the hometown Panthers.

You can read Hamlin's thoughts about his visit here. 


A surprise visitor this weekend, Maryland four-star linebacker pledge Keandre Jones may very well be morphing into the top linebacker prospect still on the board for Ohio State. They've been big fans of Jones for some time but now, as the 6-foot-2, 200-pounder from Olney is seriously considering other options, things have begun to really heat up.

Next weekend, Jones will visit Florida–a trip that was reportedly very likely to be made once he decided on visits outside of Maryland–but there's cautious optimism coming out of Columbus right now on the country's 106th-ranked player. 

One source said that he felt the Buckeyes gave Jones "a lot to think about" and, as you saw from Kareem Felder, they're making no bones about it: Jones is a priority for Urban Meyer and his staff right now.

Things could get very interesting here soon.


So why is Jones becoming the primary option at linebacker? Because it appears that Walnut Ridge freak-athlete Malik Harrison wants to play wide receiver and that Buckeyes are absolutely taking a look at him on that side of the ball.

Harrison visited this weekend, as expected, but perhaps the single biggest piece of news that's emerged is his plan to visit Michigan State next weekend and Syracuse the week after which means a signing day decision is likely. 

It's an interesting turn of events as Harrison–who waited for months for a Buckeyes' offer–now seems content to wait things out and risk a spot in the class. I've been told explicitly that Ohio State is not trying to hold him off or encouraging any delay and that they'd like him to make a decision whenever he's ready to do so.

The Columbus native has played things remarkably close to the vest and is smack-dab in the middle of basketball season so it's hard to get a real feel for what he's thinking. The people I've spoken to at Ohio State from this weekend don't seem to have a beat on what direction he's heading either so this one may be a bit more of a crapshoot than anyone ever believed it would be.

If Harrison wants to play wide receiver and wants to wait until signing day, then there becomes a question about a spot if, say–Binjimen Victor–decides he wants in at Ohio State before then.


Another surprise visitor this weekend was Jamar King, a 6-foot-5, 280-pound defensive lineman from Mendocino College in Ukiah, California. King–who graduated from high school in 2008–was scheduled to visit Ohio State the weekend of Jan. 29 but flip-flopped that date with this weekend; he'll now visit Central Florida the weekend of the 29th.

A Detroit native, King did not have a Buckeyes' offer coming into this weekend but picked one up before departing Columbus. He's got a lot of family in Alabama and has said previously that the Crimson Tide were the favorite, but there's been a bit of confusion in regard to whether or not Nick Saban's squad will have room for him.  It's expected he will still visit Alabama, who has offered, next weekend.

It's likely that King's possible spot in Ohio State's class is related to the upcoming decision to be made by Rashard Lawrence, the five-star tackle from Louisiana who will make his college choice on Friday. 

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