A Look Back at Ohio State’s Past Friday Night Lights Commitments

By Andrew Lind on June 23, 2018 at 10:10 am
Chase Young

Though it was moved to the Woody Hayes Athletic Center amid the threat of rain, Ohio State hosted its seventh-annual Friday Night Lights recruiting extravaganza last night.

The Buckeyes are hosting eight official visitors this weekend, including Olentangy Orange five-star defensive end Zach Harrison; St. Louis four-star wide receivers Marcus Washington and Jameson Williams; St. Thomas Aquinas four-star cornerback Jordan Battle; Texas four-star wide receiver Elijah Higgins; Michigan State four-star quarterback commit Dwan Mathis; Missouri three-star defensive end Etinosa Reuben; and Texas three-star athlete Peyton Powell — which means there could be a “BOOM” or two before they head home on Sunday.

With that said, we decided to take a look back at the Buckeyes’ past Friday Night Lights and the impact — or lack thereof — they made in Columbus.



Though he earned his scholarship at Friday Night Lights and committed the very next day, that was the last time Indianapolis three-star offensive tackle Tim Gardner performed in Ohio Stadium. He was dismissed from the team prior to the start of his freshman season after being arrested for public obstruction.

Gardner enrolled at Indiana following a year at prep school in New York and played in just 11 games as a redshirt freshman, but left the program ahead of the 2016 season. He ultimately finished his career at Alcorn State, where he garnered HBCU first-team All-America and first-team all-SWAC honors as a senior.



Ohio State did not add a single commitment during the 2013 rendition of Friday Night Lights.



Though most anticipated Kentucky three-star commit and Ohio native C.J. Conrad would earn an offer from the staff and flip his pledge during Friday Night Lights, another tight end — Kansas three-star Josh Moore — beat him to the punch. In fact, camp had just started when the latter announced his commitment to the Buckeyes.

Moore never made it to Columbus, as he flipped to the home-state Jayhawks in October. He then reopened his recruitment just days before National Signing Day in February 2015, blamed his head coach for pressuring him into a commitment and ultimately signed with Missouri. Moore transferred to Sam Houston State in January 2017 and finished his junior season with eight catches for 55 yards.


Though few believed he would end up anywhere other than Michigan or Michigan State, three-star defensive tackle Joshua Alabi became Ohio State’s second commitment from Detroit Cass Tech in as many years (Damon Webb) when he announced his pledge during Friday Night Lights.

Alabi made the switch to offensive tackle after his redshirt freshman season. He has appeared in 15 games in two years since, mostly on special teams, but did see important snaps when started Jamarco Jones briefly went down with injuries against Iowa and Michigan last fall.



Most were surprised that Luke Farrell, a four-star tight end from Perry, didn’t commit immediately after he received an offer from Ohio State in June 2014. But after taking a number of visits of the course of the next year, he decided to announce his commitment at Friday Night Lights.

Farrell appeared in nine games as a redshirt freshman last season, hauling in two passes for 19 yards. He’ll head into fall camp as the starter, but will challenged by Rashod Berry, Jake Hausmann and incoming Jeremy Ruckert for playing time.


Blake Haubeil, a three-star kicker from New York, brought his entire family with him to Friday Night Lights. He worked out for Meyer and then-cornerbacks/special teams coach Kerry Coombs, who extended an offer — which Haubeil accepted on the spot.

Haubeil never wavered in his commitment thereafter and arrived on campus in the summer of 2017. He was he Buckeyes’ kickoff specialists in 13 games as a true freshman.



Despite a valiant effort from home-state Maryland, five-star defensive end Chase Young was on commitment watch the moment he arrived on campus for Friday Night Lights. And after just a few dominating reps, he informed Meyer and defensive line coach Larry Johnson he wanted to be a Buckeye — with Johnson, in a memorable moment, tackling him to the turf in celebration.

Young played in 10 games as a true freshman last season, recording 19 tackles, six tackles for a loss, 3.5 sacks and a forced fumble.


Florida four-star running back Brian Snead, meanwhile, became the first commit of Ohio State’s 2018 recruiting class when he surprisingly announced his pledge following the camp.

Few expected the Buckeyes to hold onto Snead for nearly two years, but his only visits thereafter were for Friday Night Lights the following year and an official visit for the win over thrilling win Penn State — which, if we’re being honest, is pretty rare in this day and age. He signed with Ohio State in December during college football’s first Early Signing Period and enrolled in classes earlier this month.



Pennsylvania three-star safety Marcus Hooker — the younger brother of former Ohio State All-American and first-round NFL Draft pick Malik Hooker — landed an offer a few days after an intense workout for defensive coordinator Greg Schiano at Friday Night Lights. He jumped at the opportunity to follow in his brother’s footsteps, and committed to the Buckeyes within 24 hours.

Hooker also faxed in his letter of intent during the Early Signing Period and arrived in Columbus in time for summer workouts.

View 6 Comments