Football is always in the air as summer nears its end. Ohio State's 2017 season breaks into the fray before September begins, as Urban Meyer and the Buckeyes travel to Indiana on Thursday, Aug. 31.
You won't have to wait that long to see an Ohio State flavor stream across your television on ESPN, however. A slew of commitments, top prospects and even a top Ohio program are scheduled to be part of the network's High School Football Kickoff Special the week prior.
The World Wide Leader announced its seven-game slate on Tuesday, which features 29 players from 10 states in the ESPN 300 recruiting rankings. Three current Ohio State commits and three targets are among them.
Here is the slate and names to know:
|8/25||ST. JOHN BOSCO (CA) vs. ST. THOMAS AQUINAS (FL)||7 p.m.||ESPNU||S JAIDEN WOODBEY (BOSCO)|
|8/25||DEMATHA (MD) vs. BISHOP GORMAN (NV)||9 p.m.||ESPN||LB PALAIE GAOTEOTE (BISHOP GORMAN)|
|8/26||TULSA UNION (OK) vs. BROKEN ARROW (OK)||12 p.m.||ESPN|
|8/26||SARALAND (AL) vs. HEARD COUNTY (GA)||3:30 p.m.||ESPNU||QB EMORY JONES (HEARD COUNTY)|
|8/26||BARTRAM TRAIL (FL) vs. CARTERSVILLE (GA)||7:30 p.m.||ESPN2|
|8/26||IMG ACADEMY (FL) vs. CHANDLER (AZ)||10:30 p.m.||ESPNU||DT TARON VINCENT (IMG), CB HOUSTON GRIFFITH (IMG)|
|8/27||WAYNE (OH) vs. PINE-RICHLAND (PA)||1:30 p.m.||ESPN||WR L'CHRISTIAN SMITH (WAYNE)|
No current Ohio State commit plays for Wayne, though L'Christian "Blue" Smith is considered a Buckeye lean and is supposed to announce his commitment sometime in July. He is scheduled to be at Nike's The Opening this weekend.
Palaie Gaoteote is committed to USC but played with two current Buckeyes last season: Quarterback Tate Martell and defensive tackle Haskell Garrett, two 2017 signees. Gaoteote remains on Ohio State's recruiting board.
Houston Griffith participated in a one-day camp at Ohio State two weeks ago, though he is trending toward Florida State and Notre Dame right now.
Still, if you want to see 2018 quarterback commit Emory Jones throwing darts on the big screen, Saturday, Aug. 26 at 3:30 p.m. is your chance. Later that evening, mammoth defensive tackle Taron Vincent and IMG Academy take the field, a night after safety Jaiden Woodbey and St. John Bosco.