When Brian Hartline accepted Ohio State's interim wide receivers coach position, Western Hills (Ky.) all-purpose back Wandale Robinson wasn't exactly one of the Buckeyes' top-of-the-board targets.
But with Hartline's relentless efforts to recruit Robinson during his short-lived tenure, the Buckeyes quickly emerged as one of the frontrunners to land Robinson's pledge. After his initial visit to Columbus this past June, Hartline and company offered Robinson on Aug. 1 and welcomed the four-star prospect back for visits on Sept. 8 against Rutgers and Oct. 6 against Indiana.
However, the Buckeyes learned they'd have to look in a different direction Tuesday afternoon as Robinson announced his decision to stay home and commit to Kentucky.
“It really came down to trust,” Robinson told the Lexington Herald-Leader. “My family and I had talked today and it just came down to them. They have been on me the hardest since I started being recruited.”
This fall, Robinson has been electric at Western Hills. In 10 games, Robinson has accounted for 2,510 total yards; 1,844 rushing, 493 receiving and 173 passing. Those numbers are coupled with 41 total touchdowns, a team-high 105 tackles, three interceptions and six forced fumbles.
The 5-foot-10, 179-pound Robinson is considered the 4th-best all-purpose back and No. 322 prospect overall in the class. He picked Kentucky over Ohio State and fellow finalists Nebraska, Purdue and Alabama.
Robinson becomes the 20th member of Kentucky's 2019 recruiting class, the program's first four-star pledge and the Wildcats' highest-ranked commit.
As for Ohio State, Garrett Wilson and Jameson Williams are already committed at the wide receiver position. With Robinson's commitment to Kentucky, it will be interesting to see if the Buckeyes continue to go after the newest Wildcat pledge or settle with Wilson and Williams and look toward other needs.