The Hurry Up is your nightly dose of updates from the Ohio State football recruiting trail, keeping tabs on the latest from commits and targets from around the country.
WHO SAYS YOU CAN'T GO HOME?
With deep roots in the Columbus area and strong ties to the football program, it should come as no surprise Austin, Texas, Lake Travis four-star wide receiver Garrett Wilson included Ohio State in his Top 8 on Sunday night alongside Arkansas, Nebraska, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Texas and TCU.
2 Corinthians 5:7
— Garrett Wilson (@GarrettWilson_V) March 5, 2018
As you may recall, the 6-foot, 185-pound Wilson — who is considered the 14th-best wide receiver and No. 79 prospect overall in the Class of 2019 — is originally from Dublin, but moved to the Lone Star State when he was in sixth grade. Before that, though, he attended countless games in Ohio Stadium and was a big fan of former Buckeyes wide receiver DeVier Posey.
"Those fans were the best in the country, for sure," Wilson told Eleven Warriors shortly after Ohio State offered him a scholarship in mid-December. "The atmosphere every time was awesome, and I can't wait to see it again."
Well, that said, Wilson won't have to wait much longer to finally make his first trip to campus as a recruit. He's set to take an unofficial visit on March 23, where he'll be reunited with his former quarterback, Matthew Baldwin.
The two developed a strong repertoire during Baldwin's only season as a starter at Lake Travis, as they connected on 98 passes for 1,774 yards and 26 touchdowns to lead the Cavaliers to a berth in the state championship game last season. That will certainly help the Buckeyes in their pursuit of the ultra-talented wideout.
Most believe Wilson's recruitment to be a two-horse race between Ohio State and Texas, with the Longhorns holding the advantage of proximity — Lake Travis is just a stone's skip down the Colorado River from their campus. But Wilson's upcoming trip to Columbus gives him a chance to see any family that remains in the area and Ohio State an opportunity to take the lead in his recruitment.
PLENTY OF OPTIONS
Offensive tackle is without a doubt Ohio State's top priority for the current recruiting cycle, and the staff is off to a great start with Mentor four-star Ryan Jacoby and West Virginia four-star Doug Nester already in the fold.
The list of offers beyond them is long, but one prospect who stands out — and has a lot of reciprocal interest in the Buckeyes — is Warwick, Rhode Island, Bishop Hendricken four-star Xavier Truss.
The 6-foot-7, 325-pound Truss is considered the 13th-best offensive tackle and No. 97 prospect overall in the Class of 2019. He picked up an offer from Ohio State in mid-January following a strong performance at the U.S. Army All-American Bowl National Combine in San Antonio, and programs such as Alabama, Auburn, Clemson, Florida, Florida State, Georgia, LSU, Michigan, Oklahoma, Oregon, Penn State and USC have followed suit in the weeks and months since.
The Buckeyes are among the few programs standing out early in the process, and he hopes to take his first trip to Columbus later this spring — though he's yet to set an exact date for that visit.
"I was impressed by how much coach Meyer emphasizes the academics," Truss recently told Rivals' Adam Friedman. "I got sold on them helping kids get internships and how Ohio State provides opportunities for kids to succeed outside of football."
Meyer recently dropped by Bishop Hendricken to meet with Truss and Hawks head coach Keith Croft, while offensive line coach Greg Studrawa and offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Ryan Day reach out through texts or phone calls almost daily.
"They keep drilling into my head that they want to get my up there and show me all the academics," Truss said. "I love talking to coach Stud. He's a character."
In last night's edition of The Hurry Up, I addressed a concern raised by one of our readers regarding Ohio State's recent string of offers. It's important to recognize college football's ever-changing recruiting landscape, and I suggest you read it again.
Here's a small sample, which you should keep in mind every time you read about the Buckeyes extending another offer — something the staff is doing at an unprecedented rate.
In talking with coaches and other members of the recruiting industry, I've learned we're likely to have waves of commitments that coincide with three big dates on the recruiting calendar: spring official visits, the Early Signing Period and National Signing Day.
With each wave, the prospect pool shrinks. So it appears the offers going out to lower-ranked prospects are to get ahead of that, in a way. Instead of jumping into their recruitment late in the process, the prospect can build a relationship with the staff with the understanding they may eventually have a spot in the class — it just depends on how things work out with higher-ranked targets in the meantime.
With that said, let's catch you up on some of the recent offers Ohio State has handed out.
BELLFLOWER, CALIFORNIA, ST. JOHN BOSCO FOUR-STAR TIGHT END JUDE WOLFE
— Jude Wolfe (@judewolfe25) March 2, 2018
The 6-foot-6, 240-pound Wolfe is considered the eighth-best tight end and No. 238 prospect overall in the Class of 2019, though he caught just nine passes for 113 yards and three touchdowns for the Braves last season. He holds two dozen offers from programs such as Alabama, Arizona State, California, Florida, LSU, Michigan, Nebraska, Notre Dame, Tennessee, Texas A&M, UCLA, USC and Washington.
Wolfe is the former teammate of Ohio State offensive guard Wyatt Davis and Florida State safety Jaiden Woodbey, a one-time pledge to the Buckeyes.
LANETT, ALABAMA, FOUR-STAR SAFETY TRIKWEZE BRIDGES
— #11Bridges (@TrikwezeB_2) March 1, 2018
The 6-foot-3, 175-pound Bridges is considered the 17th-best safety and No. 243 prospect overall in the Class of 2019, as he racked up 30 tackles, two interceptions, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery to lead the Panthers to the state championship last season. He also played a vital role on offense, leading all receivers with 30 catches for 732 yards and eight touchdowns.
CARTERSVILLE, GEORGIA, THREE-STAR TIGHT END JACKSON LOWE
Blessed to have received an offer from the hio State University pic.twitter.com/YaHvkpal7P
— Big Baby (@jacksonlowee) March 2, 2018
The 6-foot-5, 242-pound Lowe is considered the 16th-best tight end and No. 451 prospect overall in the Class of 2019, as he hauled in 16 receptions for 340 yards and six touchdowns for the Hurricanes last season. He holds more than two dozen offers from programs such as Alabama, Auburn, Clemson, Florida, Georgia, Miami, Michigan, North Carolina, Notre Dame, Penn State, Tennessee, and USC.
Lowe is the former teammate of Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence, who was the top-ranked player in the country last cycle, which is a big reason why the Tigers are considered the early favorite to land his pledge.
ROCKY MOUNT, NORTH CAROLINA, THREE-STAR CORNERBACK SHYHEIM BATTLE
— Shyheim Battle (@ShyOutta252) March 1, 2018
The 6-foot-2, 173-pound Battle is considered the 60th-best cornerback and No. 705 prospect overall in the Class of 2019, as he recorded 68 tackles, eight pass break ups, two interceptions and one fumble recovery for the Gryphons last season. He holds more than a dozen offers from programs such as Boston College, Clemson, Duke, North Carolina, North Carolina State, Tennessee, Virginia and Virginia Tech.