The Hurry Up: New Jersey Defensive End Aaron Armitage Not Swayed By Rutgers' Hiring of Greg Schiano

By Zack Carpenter on December 2, 2019 at 7:05 pm
Aaron Armitage
Aaron Armitage

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.

Schiano hiring won't affect Armitage's decision

Crowdsourcing can be hit-or-miss, whether it's done purposefully or not. 

With Greg Schiano and Tennessee, it was a miss, and with Rutgers, it turned out to be a hit as Schiano will return for a second go-round as the Scarlet Knights' head man. Both situations featured outrage during the coaching searches involving Schiano, and in the end, it was Rutgers' fans becoming incensed at the administration at not getting a deal done that eventually, well, got a deal done.


Schiano has a chance at returning Rutgers into a respectable program, even if that doesn't mean it will become anything close to a national power. 

Whatever Rutgers becomes under Schiano will almost certainly not include Aaron Armitage

Armitage is the No. 2-ranked overall recruit in New Jersey's 2021 class. He is a 6-foot-4, 242-pound beast ranked as the No. 9 strong-side defensive end nationally and is nearing a top-150 ranking overall. Rutgers was the second Division I program to extend an offer to Armitage, following in Virginia's footsteps, during November of his sophomore season. 

He is one of three New Jersey players in the 2021 class whom the Buckeyes have extended offers to along with defensive tackles Tywone Malone (the state's top-ranked prospect who visited for the Buckeyes' wins over Penn State and Michigan this season) and George Rooks (the state's No. 3-ranked recruit).

Armitage has visited SHI Stadium and the Rutgers campus multiple times and enjoys it there, but he has higher plans. 

"I have not been in contact with coach Schiano," Armitage told Eleven Warriors. "It's a cool school, and he will most likely do something special with that program. I feel comfortable there, but I don't know if they are too high on my list right now."

Rutgers may not be in the final plans for Armitage, but the Buckeyes absolutely are. That much he confirmed with us.

Armitage visited for Ohio State's win over Penn State two Saturdays ago (Penn State is considered a favorite to land him), traveling from New Jersey with his parents, and he was blown away watching the best defensive end in the country. And he was able to continue building his relationships with Larry Johnson, Greg Mattison and Ryan Day.

"(The) shocking and awesome moments were seeing Chase Young, mostly," Armitage said. "It was probably the most excited I've been to see a football player play. I just watched him and what he did the whole game. It was awesome. Being able to see coach LJ, Mattison and Day again was also great."

The entire weekend, which was the second time Armitage visited Ohio State following a July visit, pushed the Buckeyes higher up the list for Armitage. He also visited Ann Arbor for the Buckeyes' win over Michigan (another favorite to land his commitment).

"Ohio State is a top choice for me right now," Armitage said. "I love it there. It will be in my top five whenever that comes out."

In August, Armitage told Eleven Warriors he loved his time in Columbus, getting very close with Johnson in the first stage of relationship-building with the legendary coach, but at the time he was nowhere close to making a decision or even narrowing down his list. It sounds like he's getting closer to cutting that list down, though he still has a long way to go. 

No matter what, though, the Buckeyes will be right there as his recruitment gets closer to a decision date.

Armitage hails from The Blair Academy, which housed former Buckeye defensive end targets Jayson Oweh and David Ojabo, who committed to Penn State and Michigan in 2018 and 2019, respectively. 

Chase Young 2.0?

Young was the top attraction for Armitage during his visit, and he's certainly not alone there. Young has been the reference point for more than a handful of recruits Eleven Warriors has interviewed following visits. 


He has also been one of the key players whom Ohio State commits have told us has been at the top of their list of mentors, or someone they have gotten advice from during their recruitment and after their commitment. That includes 2021 defensive lineman Jack Sawyer and 2020 defensive lineman Jacolbe Cowan.

Young is one of the best commodities the Buckeyes have in their recruiting pitches, and he was at it again on Monday evening, reaching out to the nation's No. 1-ranked overall player, Korey Foreman, on Twitter.

Foreman is the top-ranked strong-side defensive end in the 2021 class, and the Buckeyes are very much in the mix for his remarkable services. He announced that Ohio State is on his list of top 10 final schools in early November.

Young would be long gone if Foreman eventually did don scarlet and grey, but Sawyer wouldn't. Getting the nation's top two overall players, both ferocious defensive ends, would be incredible and very Clemson-like.

The odds are stacked against the Californian Foreman coming to Columbus, but it's absolutely possible. Scary thought.

Even if it's not Foreman, the Buckeyes still have a good shot at getting another top-tier defensive end to pair with Sawyer. That could be Tunmise Adeleye or Landon Jackson, each from Texas.

Fleming, Johnson ranked in top 10

Rivals released its top 10 player rankings for the 2020 class on Monday, including two Ohio State commits. Julian Fleming is ranked No. 6, and Paris Johnson Jr. is ranked No. 7.

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