The Hurry-Up: Marcus Bradley Announces Top Schools, Buckeyes Offer 2022 Class' Top-Ranked Player Shemar Stewart

By Zack Carpenter on April 5, 2020 at 7:41 pm
Shemar Stewart
Shemar Stewart (Andrew Ivins, 247 Sports)

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.

Bradley trims list

When we first spoke with Quince Orchard (Md.) defensive tackle Marcus Bradley in November, the 6-foot-3, 275-pound junior was still an off-the-radar recruit who was yet to really enter the fray in terms of becoming a well-known target for the Buckeyes.

That's changed now, and on Sunday night Bradley announced his list of his top-six final schools.

That list includes Ohio State and LSU, as Bradley told Eleven Warriors two weeks ago that those were two of the schools standing out the most.

You can read that piece on Bradley here, but here's a quick refresher on his thoughts on those two programs:

LSU: “Coach (Ed Orgeron), what he’s been able to do since he got there has been good. It’s been a good turnaround from Les Miles and what he was doing. They had a couple down years and weren’t as good as what they usually were.”

Ohio State: “My mom likes (Larry Johnson). That was the biggest thing. My dad already knew about him and had already met him so he likes him, too. He’s passionate about what he talks about. Everything that he preaches, he’s passionate about it and takes it serious. He’s straight up with me about everything – as far as him wanting me there and things like that.

“The brotherhood at Ohio State is one thing he speaks passionately about and making his guys better, he talks about that a lot – developing his players to the best they can be.”

Also on the list are Maryland, Tennessee, Texas A&M and USC.

The most notable omission from the list is Duke, as Bradley told us two weeks ago that it was one of the three programs (in addition to Ohio State and LSU) that was gaining the most momentum for him.

The Terrapins recently received a commitment from Bradley's teammate at Quince Orchard, four-star defensive end Demeioun Robinson, and that prompted Bradley to have to shoot down rumors, telling us that he had not silently committed to Maryland and a commitment to Mike Locksley's team was not imminent.

The Buckeyes were hoping to make it a two-for-one deal in getting both Robinson and Bradley to Columbus, but Locksley landed a massive get for his 2021 class by securing a verbal from Robinson, whom Ohio State will certainly continue to recruit going forward.

As for Tennessee and Texas A&M, Bradley told us those were two of the programs he was most wanting to visit during the spring or summer, so the recruiting moratorium may have put each of those schools at a disadvantage here.

Overall, it looks like this is shaping up to be a three-way race between Ohio State, LSU and Maryland, with the suspension of recruiting visits until at least June shaking up his timeline.

“If I can get all my visits in, I might still commit before the season, but it all depends,” Bradley said.

Buckeyes offer Stewart

We talked on Saturday about how Mark Pantoni and the Ohio State staff is getting out ahead a bit in the 2022 class by hitting those sophomores' film pretty hard, which included a funny and short anecdote from Pantoni about Kerry Coombs being pretty unimpressed by what he saw.

It's doubtful, though, that Coombs would have said that about the 2022 class' No. 1-ranked player, Shemar Stewart, who on Saturday announced Ohio State has come calling with his 24th total offer, joining programs like Florida, LSU, Penn State, Georgia, Miami, Florida State, North Carolina, Notre Dame, Oregon and Texas A&M.

Stewart is the top-ranked overall prospect and defensive end in the class, per 247Sports' scout evaluations released in March. Stewart has become one of the top young players for Ohio State fans to keep an eye on over the course of the next year as the Buckeyes' recruiting efforts extend to the 2022 class now that they already have 15 commitments for the 2021 cycle.

According to 247Sports director of scouting Barton Simmons, Stewart projects as the prototypical versatile player along the defensive line that Ohio State has been targeting – one who can play on the edge as a premium pass rusher or kick inside to the interior. 

From Simmons' scouting report on Stewart:

Long, lean, muscular defensive lineman with no bad weight, an imposing frame, long arms and thick lower half. Body type has the potential to continue to bulk up as a jumbo edge rusher or even kick inside long term given early stage of his development. Plays to his size on film. Brutish pass rusher that has an effective long-arm, can walk offensive tackles back to the quarterback and can win with speed. Has top end combine athleticism.

Burton's timeline changing

On Wednesday, one of the Buckeyes' priority offensive line targets, Kentucky guard Jager Burton, doubled down on his plan to take one of his five official visits to Ohio State from June 12-14.

Burton has told us in the past that he was planning on taking all five of his officials – to Ohio State, Kentucky, Clemson, Oregon and Alabama – before making a commitment on Aug. 24.

On Saturday, though, Burton announced there will inevitably be a shift in his commitment timeline due to the ongoing coronavirus outbreak forcing visit suspensions. He still plans on visiting all five of those schools, so he will make a commitment sometime after he is able to do so.

Like Burton, many recruits are going about business as usual and trying to keep some semblance of normalcy and optimism in regards to their commitment timelines and visit schedules amid the uncertainties. There is still, quite clearly, optimism coming from Burton that his timeline won't be pushed too far back, but he has realized that flexibility in his timeline is probably going to be necessary.

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