We're only in the middle of the 2018 summer, but it's already full speed ahead for Ohio State's 2020 recruiting class. Urban Meyer and Co. are off to a hot start as the Buckeyes currently sit at No. 2 in the national team rankings with five commitments and an average player rating of 95.88. Mark Richt and the Hurricanes are sitting in the top spot with eight commits and an average of 92.36.
The Buckeyes have already secured pledges from Ryan Day's top quarterback target, two bookend tackles, a four-star interior lineman, and one of the country's top defensive backs. It's a tall task, but at this point the 2020 class is shaping up to be the best we've seen since Meyer's arrival.
Ohio State has always made use of the pipeline programs that feed top talent to Columbus. This was seen during the Jim Tressel regime with Cleveland's Glenville High School and others from within the state. In recent years, feeder schools have included Bishop Gorman (Las Vegas), Fort Lauderdale's St. Thomas Aquinas, Brooklyn's Erasmus Hall, and of course Bradenton, Florida's IMG Academy.
Washington D.C.'s St. John's College High School may ring a bell for those who have been following the recruiting game for some time now. The Cadets – who also don the scarlet and gray – have had several players courted by Ohio State and have been a power program in the Mid-Atlantic.
Way back in the Class of 2005, many thought the Buckeyes were on track to land one of the country's top linebackers, but it was ultimately Tennessee who signed Rico McCoy. More recently Ohio State gained a commitment from five-star 2016 defensive end Terrell Hall, but the one-time Buckeye pledge – who now goes by Terrell Davis – eventually landed in Tuscaloosa.
For the Class of 2020, it's looking like a new pipeline could be in the works as the Buckeyes are targeting St. John's for a trio of America's top prospects.
Rakim Jarrett • ★★★★ • Wide Receiver • 6-foot, 182 pounds • Nat. Rank: No. 45
Rakim Jarrett is the country's No. 9 wideout for the Class of 2020, and it's pretty clear that the speedster is enamored with all things Ohio State. Jarrett recently released his top four schools and is now focusing on the Buckeyes, Nittany Lions, Seminoles, and Crimson Tide.
The four-star has already checked out Alabama and Penn State and is set to make the trip to Columbus later this month. Jarrett's mom's side of the family hails from the Canton area and his crystal ball currently reads 100 percent in favor of the Buckeyes. As a sophomore, he hauled in 43 passes for 513 yards and five scores. A decision could come before the start of his junior year.
Mekhail Sherman • ★★★★★ • OLB/DE • 6-foot-3, 234 pounds • Nat. Rank: No. 17
At 6-foot-3 and 234 pounds, Mekhail Sherman already has the look of one of America's top hybrid defenders. With two years of high school remaining, there's a very real possibility that the five-star develops into a pure defensive end at the next level.
Sherman's recruitment is much more wide open than Jarrett's, but at this point teams like Ohio State, Penn State, and Georgia appear to be toward the top of his list. He has offers from all over the country and is likely a long ways away from any sort of decision. Sherman is also scheduled to make his first trip to Columbus on the weekend of July 27.
Tre Williams • ★★★★ • DT • 6-foot-3, 308 pounds • Nat. Rank: No. 132
If you're a fan of massive defensive tackles who man the middle against some of the country's top competition then Tre Williams is probably someone you will be quite fond of. The Connecticut native is transferring in to St. John's for his junior season and the Buckeyes have already been listed in his top 10.
Williams grew up rooting for Ohio State but also has been around plenty of Nittany Lions in his days. He's a former teammate of 2019 Penn State defensive back commit Tyler Rudolph. Williams too has offers from the majority of the national powers and is now residing in prime Larry Johnson recruiting territory.
Ohio State is coming off of a ridiculous 2018 haul at the position and is in line to bring in one or two more for 2019. By the time 2020 rolls around Dre'Mont Jones, DaVon Hamilton, and Robert Landers will be long gone so there will be a need to reload at tackle.
The "dream school" will be a major player throughout the Williams recruitment.
— TGroovy (@_TreWilliams) January 26, 2018
St. John’s also has a four-star cornerback named Luke Hill. He is the country's No. 7 cornerback for the Class of 2020. Don't be surprised if he too receives a Buckeye offer sooner rather than later.
Outside of IMG Academy and the usual pipeline schools, St. John's is going to be one to watch closely for the next few years. The Buckeyes already seem in prime position to snag Rakim Jarrett sooner rather than later. They're the crystal ball favorite for Tre Williams, and the Mekhail Sherman recruitment is going to be a big one to watch unfold. The trio's upcoming visit to Columbus is big news early on in the cycle.
St. John's also plays one of the country's more formidable schedules. This season they'll take on the likes of Alabama's Hoover High School, Miami Central, and IMG Academy. The Cadets will look to repeat as champions of the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference; a league that also features the powerhouse DeMatha program.