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.
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Ohio State already holds a pair of commitments at the running back position in four-stars Steele Chambers and Sampson James, but that doesn’t faze Fort Lauderdale University School four-star Kenny McIntosh. In fact, the Buckeye are certain to make his Top 5 when he trims his list of more than 20 scholarship offers sometime this summer.
“I love Ohio State,” McIntosh told Eleven Warriors during The Opening Canton Regional last weekend. “It doesn’t matter how many running backs they’ve got there, I’m coming in to compete. They’ll definitely make the Top 5.”
Other schools in the running for the 6-foot-1, 206-pound McIntosh — who is considered the seventh-best running back and No. 130 prospect overall in the Class of 2019 — are Florida, Florida State, Miami, Oklahoma and Oregon. But Ohio State stands out thanks to running backs coach Tony Alford, who has developed a number of players at the position like Ezekiel Elliott, Mike Weber and J.K. Dobbins.
“I love how he breaks down the stuff they need to do better,” McIntosh said. “When [Elliott] started blocking and took blocking seriously is when he worked on developing his game. I admire him for that.”
McIntosh believes he could have a similar impact in Columbus, too.
“[I’m] a big, explosive, quick and versatile back,” he said. “I can line up in the slot and run routes, create a mismatch with linebackers and stuff like that. That’s a real big part of my game.”
McIntosh was among the handful of players from out of state who participated in the event at Massillon Washington. He's been to campus three times previously, but was unable to visit during this trip and instead used it as an opportunity to spend time with family in the area.
“My dad is originally from Ohio. From Youngstown,” McIntosh said, but quickly noted his roots won’t help the Buckeyes secure his pledge. “He’s a big Miami fan, though. He wants me to go to Miami. He’s always all about The U. He really grew up watching Miami and said he always loved them.”
Thanks to his father’s affinity for the program and their proximity to the Coral Gables campus, the Hurricanes are the overwhelming favorite in McIntosh’s recruitment. He plans to take all five official visits before making a decision, though, including to Ohio State for the regular-season finale against Michigan.
NEXT IN LINE
McIntosh was quick to dismiss the level of competition at last weekend’s event — “It doesn’t compare to South Florida." But that said, he was outshined by Akron Archbishop Hoban four-star DeaMonte Trayanum, who was without a doubt the most impressive running back in attendance.
The 5-foot-11, 215-pound Trayanum finished the event with a 115.59 SPARQ rating, which takes into account height, weight and workout scores — including the 40-yard dash, pro-agility shuffle, power ball toss and vertical jump. It was the highest among running backs and sixth among all participants.
“It was a great experience,” Trayanum told Eleven Warriors. “I got to compete with the best in my region, just battling all day.”
In January, Trayanum became just the second prospect in his class to pick up an offer from Ohio State. He then visited campus for the first time last month.
“It was a great experience,” Trayanum said. “I got to see how practice was and I got to talk to coach [Urban] Meyer, coach [Ryan] Day and coach Alford, just realizing how great they are. I’d love to be coached by them.”
Trayanum is actually listed as the 10th-best linebacker and No. 173 prospect overall in the Class of 2020, but most schools are recruiting him as a running back. He already holds offers from Boston College, Michigan, Notre Dame, Rutgers, Toledo and West Virginia, while Alabama and Penn State have also shown interest.
“I’m just trying to enjoy the experience. Not let it get too stressful and just have fun with it,” Trayanum said, noting education, playing time and the program’s support system are the most important factors in his recruitment.
Trayanum plans to return for an unofficial visit for the season opener against Oregon State.
“I just really want to enjoy the behind-the-scenes experience,” he said.
That said, it wouldn’t be surprising to see Trayanum pledge his services to the Buckeyes that weekend. Though he’s in no hurry to make a decision, he also wants to get the process out of the way early and work toward early enrollment.
GARDEN OF DEFENSIVE ENDS
Ohio State extended a scholarship offer on Monday afternoon to Camden, New Jersey, Woodrow Wilson four-star defensive end Fadil Diggs.
Blessed to receive my 17th offer form Ohio state pic.twitter.com/xZp0zBl6RW
— BIG FRANK (@fadil_diggs) May 14, 2018
“I was very excited about this offer and that I get a chance to play at a big-time school,” Diggs told Eleven Warriors.
The 6-foot-4, 205-pound Diggs is considered the 11th-best weak-side defensive end and No. 171 prospect overall in the Class of 2020, as he recorded 58 tackles, 11 quarterback hurries, nine sacks, three pass break ups, one interception, one tackle for a loss and one fumble recovery to lead the Tigers within a point of the state championship last season. He holds more than a dozen offers from programs such as Boston College, Cincinnati, North Carolina, North Carolina State, Penn State, South Carolina, Virginia Tech and West Virginia.
Defensive coordinator and area recruiter Greg Schiano was in New Jersey last week, at which time he stopped by Woodrow Wilson to check on Diggs.
“[I think he likes my] speed, that I’m very physical and have a good first step,” he said.
Diggs has never been to campus, but plans to make his first trip to Columbus this summer.
The Buckeyes also offered a scholarship on Monday morning to Chester, Virginia, Thomas Dale four-star running back Chris Tyree.
— Chris Tyree4 (@chris_tyree4) May 14, 2018
The 5-foot-9, 175-pound Tyree is considered the top-rated all-purpose back and No. 31 prospect overall in the Class of 2020, as he rushed for 1,113 yards and 10 touchdowns to lead the Knights to the second round of the state playoffs last season. He holds nearly 20 offers from programs such as Florida State, Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, Penn State, Tennessee, Virginia Tech and West Virginia.
Tyree is friends with Ohio State four-star linebacker signees Teradja Mitchell and K’Vaughan Pope, the latter having grown up about a half hour south in Dinwiddie. Surely they’ll be in his ear about what the program has to offer.