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.
BOTH SIDES OF THE RIVALRY
On Sunday evening — just hours after Ohio State landed a commitment from one of the nation’s top interior linemen in Georgia four-star Harry Miller — Crystal Lake, Illinois, South four-star offensive tackle Trevor Keegan included the Buckeyes in his Top 6 alongside Alabama, Clemson, Georgia, Michigan and Penn State.
— Trevor Keegan (@bigtrevk) June 10, 2018
The 6-foot-6, 310-pound Keegan is considered the 16th-best offensive tackle and No. 131 prospect overall in the Class of 2019, as he was named first-team all-state last season despite the Gators’ 3-6 record.
Keegan has been to Ohio State twice in the last year in a half, most recently for a spring practice in early March. It was at that time offensive line coach Greg Studrawa extended a scholarship offer.
That said, Keegan’s recruitment is shaping up to be a two-team battle between the Buckeyes and Wolverines — which should come as no surprise given the fact that his great-grandmother is an Ohio State fan and his great-grandfather is a Michigan fan. The two actually met on the train on their way to The Game more than a half-century ago.
There was a point in time this spring when it appeared the Buckeyes had assumed the lead in Keegan’s recruitment, but things began trending back in the Wolverines’ favor when they hired new offensive line coach Ed Warinner. The two struck up a relationship when Warriner was at Minnesota, and it simply carried over to Ann Arbor.
Ohio State will, of course, continue to try to get Keegan on campus this summer. But I think Michigan should be viewed as a heavy favorite as he heads toward a likely Aug. 30 decision, which is his mother’s birthday.
GREEK GOD OF LOCKDOWN DEFENSE
A trio of talented prospects from Tennessee made their way to Ohio State for a one-day camp on Friday afternoon, including Murfreesboro Blackman four-star cornerback Adonis Otey.
— Adonis Otey CLAMPCREW (@d1dizzle) June 8, 2018
“It was great,” Otey told Eleven Warriors. “They seemed to love me.”
The 5-foot-11, 180-pound Otey — a former teammate of Buckeyes freshman running back Master Teague III — worked out with co-defensive coordinator/safeties coach Alex Grinch and cornerbacks coach Taver Johnson. He also met with head coach Urban Meyer at the conclusion of the camp.
“I know now I’m high on their board,” Otey said. “They are one of my top schools, [too]. It’s their history with defensive backs.”
Otey, who is considered the 32nd-best cornerback and No. 357 prospect overall in the Class of 2019, recently narrowed down his list of nearly 20 scholarship offers to Arkansas, Florida State, Louisville, Michigan and Oklahoma. He plans to return to campus on June 22 and hopes to make a decision sometime next month.
Ohio State’s cornerback recruiting has lagged a bit behind this cycle, but a big reason for that is because the Buckeyes have signed eight cornerbacks over the last two years. The need simply isn’t there, so the staff can be a bit more judicious in their search for one or two players at the position.
Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas four-star Jordan Battle, though listed by recruiting sites as a safety, is Ohio State’s top target this cycle. I anticipate they’ll land his commitment when he takes his official visit the weekend of June 22-24. But Otey and Tennessee four-star Woodi Washington, who also made the trip on Friday, certainly staked their claims as top-tier targets.
Florida four-star Kaiir Elam, who wrapped up a two-day visit on Saturday, is also in that conversation.
I get the sense that it's a two-team race between the Buckeyes and Sooners, with the staff putting itself in a great position for Otey. If they make a push, I think Ohio State could ultimately pull a prospect out of Blackman for the second-consecutive year.
THE WAITING GAME
Westerville Central three-star defensive end Dontay Hunter II also attended Ohio State’s one-day camp on Friday, and as mentioned in my notebook that evening, he received some individualized instruction from defensive line coach Larry Johnson.
“It was absolutely amazing,” Hunter told Eleven Warriors. “It’s so easy to be coached by him. He broke things down to the tee and helped me become a better player in every aspect.”
The 6-foot-5, 235-pound Hunter is considered the 35th-best weak-side defensive end and No. 524 prospect overall in the Class of 2019, as he recorded 45 tackles, 14 tackles for a loss, six sacks, two fumble recoveries, one forced fumble and one interception for the Warhawks last season. He holds more than a dozen offers from programs such as Cincinnati, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Minnesota, Pittsburgh, Purdue and Virginia, but there’s no doubt Ohio State is the one he covets.
Hunter, who was born at the Wexner Medical Center and admittedly grew up a fan of the program, believes Johnson is close to offering following Friday’s performance.
“It’s just a matter of time,” Hunter said. “Next couple of weeks and I should have it.”
Ohio State is only expected to take two defensive ends this cycle, with Mentor four-star Noah Potter already in the fold and Olentangy Orange five-star Zach Harrison undoubtably the staff’s top target — regardless of position. If they extend an offer to Hunter, that number automatically jumps to three, given he’s previously said he’d commit on the spot.
Hunter plans to return to campus again soon, but has no specific date in mind just yet.
RELATIONSHIPS ARE KEY
The former put the Buckeyes in his Top 10 on Sunday afternoon alongside Alabama, Arkansas, Auburn, Florida, Florida State, LSU, Notre Dame, Penn State and Texas, while the latter listed a Top 6 that includes Maryland, Nebraska, South Carolina, Virginia and Virginia Tech
— Derrian Brown (@BrownDerrian) June 10, 2018
Final 6 pic.twitter.com/tAe0c5gNWK
— Tayvion Robinson (@RobinsonTayvion) June 9, 2018
Neither Brown nor Robinson has been to campus before, but their respective relationships with the aforementioned Miller and freshman linebacker Teradja Mitchell makes the Buckeyes an intriguing option for both.
That said, I don’t think the program has room for either at the moment, especially given they both play positions where the staff already holds a pair of commitments (running back and safety).