The Hurry Up: Rivals' Weekend in Columbus Brings Key Visitors to Ohio State, Kellen Mond Taking Spring Game Trip

By Jeremy Birmingham on April 10, 2016 at 7:45 pm
Donovan Peoples-Jones at Ohio State on Saturday
Donovan Peoples-Jones

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 was a major recruiting camp in Columbus Saturday and it paid some dividends for Ohio State.

The Rivals Camp Series stopped just miles from the Buckeyes' campus and upon its completion, a handful of Ohio State targets in 2017 and 2018 and beyond made a visit to see Urban Meyer's program. Of all the visits, none were more "important" from a recruiting standpoint than the one made by Detroit Cass Tech five-star wide receiver Donovan Peoples-Jones, who showed up with a handful of his younger Technician teammates.

Ohio State has been working hard to get the country's top-ranked wideout back on campus and Saturday's trip may have helped secure the next one. Peoples-Jones is slated to return for Ohio State's spring game next weekend.

"The visit went great," one source told Eleven Warriors about the quick stop to campus. "He'll for sure be back next weekend."

The Buckeyes are in a great spot with a trio of Top 20 wide receivers in 2017 but none possess the combination of raw physical ability, size and productivity that Peoples-Jones has. Next weekend's visit will go a long way towards knowing exactly where Ohio State stands in this race.


While we're talking big spring game visitors, here's one that may turn some heads.

IMG quarterback–and Baylor commitment–Kellen Mond will head north to check out Ohio State.

"I'm flying up," Mond told 11W. "I'll be in Ohio on Friday," 

Mond will be the second quarterback committed elsewhere to see Columbus this spring, after Texas A&M pledge Tate Martell did at the end of March. Like Martell, the 6-foot-3, 200-pound Mond also has family in Ohio; his father is from Dayton.

Taking over for the country's top-ranked 2016 quarterback, Ole Miss signee Shea Patterson, Mond came to IMG from San Antonio's Reagan High School. He's the country's fifth-ranked dual-threat quarterback and 115th-ranked overall prospect. As a junior, he threw for 2,000 yards and 26 touchdowns and accounted for another 900 yards and seven scores on the ground.


Beyond the aforementioned Peoples-Jones, Saturday's most important visitor to Ohio State was undoubtedly Clairton, Pennsylvania, defensive back Lamont Wade. The Buckeyes have been right at the top of the list for Wade for almost a year now but it seems as though some challengers–and challenges–are emerging.

Wade's comments, which were made in Columbus, are certainly interesting. He wants to enroll early, and the vibe you get from that interview is obvious–there may not be an open roster spot for him as an early enrollee–which could throw a serious wrench into his recruiting plans as it relates to Ohio State.

Two weeks ago, I mentioned here that some schools are making their push on Wade by suggesting that the number of players the Buckeyes are considering and bringing in at defensive back.

"Two schools came right out and said he will start right now (if he picks their school)," Carlton Wade said. "A lot of schools tell Lamont if he goes (to Ohio State) and gets hurt, he will never get on the field because (the Buckeyes) bring in several players just like him, if not better and he will get lost in the shuffle."

It seems that the question marks about his ability to enroll early, plus the chance (read: promise, lol) of early playing time may be giving him pause. Regardless, Wade seems willing to give Ohio State the benefit of the doubt and told current Buckeyes' offensive lineman Matt Burrell that he'd return to campus next month and spend more than a few hours on campus.

Never a dull moment in recruiting, is there?


Last December, when D.J. Durkin was hired at Maryland, the Buckeyes took full advantage of the unrest in College Park, swooping in and stealing away the two highest-ranked Terrapins commitments from the 2016 class. 

Now with a little time to recruit and build his staff and present his plans for the future of the Maryland program, Durkin and the Turtles had a big weekend, making their first real "splash" on the recruiting trail and establishing themselves as a player in the fertile DMV area for at least the rest of the 2017 cycle.

Over the weekend, Maryland received three major pledges, all of which from their home region. On Friday, IMG defensive lineman Cam Spence picked the Terps over a bevy of the country's best, and that was followed up commitments from four-star quarterback Kasim Hill and three-star linebacker Ayinde Eley, a high school teammate of Buckeye signee Keandre Jones who had an Ohio State offer.

This could just be the start for Maryland, who has also made major steps towards reeling in another IMG star–five star Joshua Kaindoh–after his recent visit back to College Park. Kaindoh, like Spence, is originally from Maryland and if he were to join "The Movement" it could also go a long way towards helping Durkin's staff keep another defensive end, four-star Chase Young, at home. Spence, Kaindoh and Young would be an exceptional defensive line haul in Durkin's first full recruiting year.

Another player who's been listed as an Ohio State "lean," offensive lineman Jordan McNair, has also been reportedly trending towards the Terrapins. The Buckeyes have two big-time national recruits committed along the offensive line and there's no guarantee that there's room for McNair if he wanted in. 

A rising tide lifts all boats, and a number of the Big Ten's boats are on the come up.

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