The Hurry Up: A Texas A&M Commit Weighs Re-opening His Recruitment While Top Offers Roll in

By Taylor Lehman on February 15, 2019 at 6:30 pm
Akinola Ogunbiyi

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.

Weight on Ogunbiyi's broad shoulders

Four-star Texas offensive tackle Akinola Ogunbiyi committed to Texas A&M on June 2, 2018, at 15 years old. Then his mother had a stroke a few months later while his father is in Nigeria, where Ogunbiyi's family is descended from. 

Texas A&M is about an hour and a half away from Sugar Land, Texas, where Ogunbiyi plays ball at Kempner High School. Being close to home and close to his mother was a priority, and Ogunbiyi had already developed a good relationship with A&M offensive line coach Jim Turner, who was one of two coaches retained by Jimbo Fisher when Fisher took the head coaching job before the 2018 season.

Fisher confirmed on Feb. 7, though, that Turner had taken a job with the Cincinnati Bengals and first-year head coach Zac Taylor. Ogunbiyi's mother's health continued to improve and has improved to a level where he feels comfortable looking at schools outside of College Station.

Ogunbiyi still likes the program, Kempner head coach Darrin Andrus said, but the No. 213 overall recruit wants to be sure he's going to a program where he feels most comfortable. 

For being the No. 6 guard in the Class of 2020, Ogunbiyi hasn't played the sport very long. He never payed before high school and just logged his third season.

"When he came in as a freshman, he could barely do a squat. He was so stiff," Andrus said. "But then I think the athletic genes took over and he's only gotten better since then."

By "athletic genes," Andrus is referring to Ogunbiyi's familial lineage. The Texas guard's father is cousins with NBA Hall of Famer Hakeem Olajuwon, and Ogunbiyi is named after Olajuwon's brother, Akinola Olajuwon.

Andrus, who was a graduate assistant at Texas A&M and has coached a couple current NFL players from Kempner High School, said Ogunbiyi will "be a good one" at the college level, despite his late start.

"He carries his weight really well," Andrus said. "It's kind of like a Blindside-type of deal with (former NFL tackle) Michael Oher where he's still just learning the game. Once he gets it, he will be really good."

Andrus said he's played host to not only Fisher, but also coaches like Alabama's Nick Saban and Oklahoma's Lincoln Riley, but he hasn't talked to any Ohio State coaches yet. It shouldn't be long, though, before a Buckeye coach makes contact, after Ohio State extended an offer to Ogunbiyi on Thursday.

Top-10 Corner Gets an Offer

Ohio State continued to offer some f the top recruits in the country Friday night, as four-star Texas cornerback Lorando Johnson announced he also received a Buckeye offer.

Johnson is a big offer for the Buckeyes even though they have offered the top six 2020 prospects at the position already. In the Dallas Pylon 7v7 earlier this month, Johnson was the Defensive MVP that battled every team's No. 1 receiving option with success, according to 247Sports.

Johnson had already announced a top-three of LSU, Texas A&M and Arkansas in late-December but left his recruitment fairly open, which prompted an offer from Alabama in late-January and now an offer from Ohio State.

The No. 77 overall prospect joins a list of cornerback offers for the Buckeyes that already includes No. 1 cornerback Elias Ricks, who committed to LSU out of California. Johnson has serious interest in the Tigers too, but with a roster that is currently fairly thin at cornerback, Ohio State is an attractive landing spot for any top corner in the nation.

Another Buckeye Offer

Three-star Michigan athlete Cameron Martinez became the sixth Ohio State offer of the week Friday afternoon. The Muskegon High School quarterback has posted 2,316 rushing yards and 632 passing yards for 47 total touchdowns with just his senior year remaining. 

Most programs have recruited the No. 18 Michigan recruit as a running back, wide receiver and defensive back. He's the seventh athlete offered by Ohio State in his class and has the sixth-best 247Sports composite rating. 

Martinez has more than 20 offers, including offers from programs like Michigan and Michigan State, which are both near the top of his interest list. Indiana, Purdue and Penn State have also offered.

He’s a prospect similar to Dublin’s Michael Drennen II and Fairfield’s Jutahn McClain, and it’ll be interesting to see how Ohio State handles the recruitment of all three. Each one of the potential H-backs have now earned Buckeye offers and the Wolverines are heavily involved with the trio as well.

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