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.
Wolfe expected to take unofficial, official visits
Let’s get this merry-go-round sentence out of the way that we’ve repeated 100 times – Ohio State’s plan is to sign two tight ends in the 2021 class.
With one already in the fold, committed three-star Sam Hart of Cherokee Trail (Colorado) High School, here are updates on a couple more tight ends the Buckeyes have their eyes on.
Hardin County (Tennessee) High School’s Hudson Wolfe – a four-star ranked as the No. 9 tight end in the country – is nearing a top-200 ranking overall, is Tennessee’s sixth-ranked junior and he’s in the top one or two of the Buckeyes’ priority recruits at the position.
The attention paid to Wolfe makes that apparent, as offensive coordinator/tight ends coach Kevin Wilson visited Hardin County twice during the January contact period, and Ryan Day also traveled down for a visit.
“Coach Wilson has done an outstanding job recruiting him,” Hardin County head coach Matthew Smith told Eleven Warriors. “He has really done an outstanding job developing relationships with not only Hudson but his family, coaches, teachers and school administrators.”
Wolfe and Wilson have been building a stronger relationship since September, when Wilson and former Ohio State assistant Trey Holtz officially offered him a scholarship. Wolfe then visited Columbus for the Buckeyes’ October win over Michigan State – his first visit to Ohio State and his first meeting with Day. As of now, the odds are good for Wolfe to make both an unofficial and official visit to Columbus.
“To my knowledge, he is going to try to get back to Ohio State on our spring break, which will be the last week of March, and then I am sure that they will talk about setting up his official visit at that point,” Smith said. “He plans to get back to his top schools in March, maybe to catch some of spring practice, and then wants to begin his official visits after April 1. He will likely make a commitment sometime this summer.”
Smith describes Wolfe as “a humble young man” who “feels very blessed to have all the great options he has.”
“Ohio State is obviously one of the premier college football programs in the country and is high on his list,” Smith said. “He and his family have handled this process very well and will continue to evaluate these schools through the spring and early summer until they make a decision which program is the best fit for him.”
As for what Wolfe brings to the table – whether that’s Baylor, Georgia, LSU, Michigan, Tennessee or Alabama, which has long been expected to be the leader in Wolfe’s recruitment – Smith believes the 6-foot-5, 235-pound junior “will be a good teammate and will be fun to coach” who brings versatility as a pass-catcher and blocker.
“Hudson is an outstanding young man with great character,” Smith said. “He is a 4.0 student and has never been in any trouble off the field. He works hard on and off the field to have success in all aspects of his life. I think he will fit in well with whatever program he chooses.
“Hudson has great physical tools. He is a big and physical blocker that can block the (line of scrimmage) or in space. He runs good routes and creates mis-matches on the outside and has great ball skills. As all young men do, he will need to continue to work and mature at the next level. He is also very intelligent and understands the game and what we are asking him to do.”
Buckeyes' TE plans “clearly communicated” to Dingle
Bowling Green (Ky.) High School’s Jordan Dingle is another key tight end target we have provided updates on during the fall and winter.
Dingle was offered by Wilson at a one-day June camp hosted by the Buckeyes, and he followed up with game day visits for Ohio State’s wins over Miami (Ohio) in September and Penn State in November. During that time, Dingle’s national ranking has fluctuated, having gone from three stars to four stars and back to three stars – that’s the current billing for the nation’s 13th-ranked tight end and second-ranked Kentucky prospect.
Most of that rankings dip was due to an injury Dingle suffered last season, but that hasn’t deterred Wilson – Dingle’s primary recruiter – from recruiting Dingle, having visited Bowling Green High School during the January contact period.
Dingle’s head coach, Mark Spader, says the Buckeyes’ “plans for the tight end position have been clearly communicated to Jordan.”
“Jordan, along with his mother and father, are deciding what schools they will focus on at this point in his recruiting process,” Spader said. “He has a brother at Georgia Tech, so they have been through this process before and will make a calculated decision yet again.
“Jordan will spend this month deciding on the schools that he wants to focus on for the remainder of the recruiting process. He has so many offers from excellent schools that things are far from clear at this point.”
While Wolfe remains higher up on the board for the Buckeyes at this point, Dingle is another one to keep a keen eye on, as the Ohio State coaching staff sees plenty of things to like about the 6-foot-4, 230-pound Dingle.
“Jordan is our best edge blocker with tremendous explosion and leverage and is also a big receiver that runs great routes,” Spader said. “He will be targeted much more on offense in his senior season and will also start on the defensive side of the ball at defensive end."