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.
Flipping another DB, continuing Georgia pipeline
By officially getting the flip of cornerback Jordan Hancock from Clemson on Sunday, the Buckeyes have pulled off another steal of a defensive back recruit (and substantially made up for the loss of Devonta Smith’s flip to Alabama).
Recently speaking, first came Ryan Watts’ flip from Oklahoma in the 2020 class. Then Jantzen Dunn’s flip from Oklahoma in the 2021 class in that wild one-hour period in April. And now they have pulled off a gigantic flip by stealing Hancock from Clemson.
With Kerry Coombs back in the picture, it really does feel like if the Buckeyes want a defensive back badly enough, especially a cornerback, they are going to get him. That’s what happens when you’ve helped put seven cornerbacks in the first round of the NFL draft with another (Shaun Wade) headed that way soon enough.
And speaking of Coombs, who was instrumental in the Hancock flip, he is now up to No. 2 in the 247Sports recruiter rankings for the class of 2021. He has six recruits credited to him with an average player rating of 93.60 points, though Jaylen Johnson belongs more to Al Washington, the assistant who recruited Johnson prior to Coombs’ return to Columbus.
Tony Alford ranks No. 3 on that list, and Brian Hartline comes in at No. 9 after finishing in the top spot in the 2020 class. Landing Emeka Egbuka would likely push Hartline into the top five for the second straight cycle. Larry Johnson (12) and Washington (19) also rank in the top 20 recruiters for the 2021 class.
The Buckeyes now have 12 top-100 overall prospects committed out of their 19 total commits. Here’s how that stacks up against the other top recruiting classes for 2021:
1. Ohio State (12)
2. Clemson (7)
3. Alabama (6)
4. LSU (5)
5. Oklahoma (4)
5. Oregon (4)
7. Georgia (3)
7. North Carolina (3)
7. Texas (3)
Here's a snapshot of the 247 Composite team rankings, showing just how great this Ohio State class is shaping up to be. pic.twitter.com/OxS1xqSN62— Eleven Warriors (@11W) July 19, 2020
If the Buckeyes can land their final four of top-priority targets in J.T. Tuimoloau (2), Egbuka (8), Derrick Davis Jr. (53) and Tywone Malone (54) – that’s a massive task, obviously – they would have 12 commits currently ranked in the top 55. And that’s not including Tristan Leigh (12), who has become their top uncommitted offensive line target following the commitment of JC Latham to Alabama.
As for where the Buckeyes stand in their defensive back recruiting, the coaching staff has already reached out to their current commits to let them know their standing in the class has not changed because of Hancock’s commitment. There’s an outside chance that could change if Davis were to commit, as we have been told multiple times that the Buckeyes’ plans are to bring him in as a safety and not an outside linebacker.
But for now, every defensive back’s commitment is solid, and we don’t expect them to be wooed by any other competing schools’ pitches that Ohio State has too many defensive backs in the class.
Coach Day right now... pic.twitter.com/d2QMD3tsEO— TreVeyon Henderson (@TreVeyonH4) July 19, 2020
Some other quick-hitting facts about Hancock’s commitment, courtesy of Eleven Warriors’ Matt Gutridge:
- It helps the Buckeyes continue their Georgia pipeline, as Hancock is the first player from the state to commit to the Buckeyes’ 2021 class and is now the third player from Suwanee to commit to Ohio State, joining Cameron Heyward and Bradley Roby.
- Hancock will be the 38th player from the Peach State to join an Ohio State roster. On the 2020 roster are Justin Fields, Harry Miller, Steele Chambers, Antwuan Jackson and Trey Sermon.
- Hancock’s commitment gives the Buckeyes already the 12th-highest class compared to classes that have finished No. 1 in the country since 2001.
Mirco now a three-star, Adeleye may re-earn fifth star
Both the 2021 and 2022 class saw changes this week in the rankings, including the debut of the 2022 composite rankings – which features Ohio State debuting at No. 2 as a class with three top-150 commits.
While there were no major updates for any 2021 commits or targets, one whom we failed to mention was punter Jesse Mirco.
Mirco now has a star rating, as he is listed as a three-star prospect ranked No. 1,868 overall, No. 3 at punter and No. 2 in Australia. He ranks behind only West Bloomfield (Mich.) punter and Wolverines commit Tommy Doman and fellow ProKick Australia punter and Texas commit Isaac Pearson in the positional rankings. Pearson is the lone Australian ranked ahead of Mirco. (All top Australian players listed in the rankings are punters committed to Division I programs.)
Also, be on the lookout for Buckeye defensive end commit Tunmise Adeleye to become a five-star prospect. With Tony Grimes set to be removed from the 2021 rankings with his reclassification into the 2020 class, the No. 31-ranked Adeleye is in line to move into the top 30 and grab that coveted fifth star. Adeleye was a five-star prospect until a slight fall in February. That would give Ohio State five 2021 commits ranked as five-star prospects.
Clemons clocks a 4.37
Oregon four-star receiver Darrius Clemons is a player whom Ohio State has shown interest in for a while, though he has yet to receive a Buckeyes offer, and it does not appear an offer is imminent.
But the 6-foot-3, 195-pound receiver remains a borderline top-150 prospect worthy of keeping an eye on moving forward, and that remains true following his performance at The MVP Combine in Oregon. Clemons was clocked in the laser-timed 40-yard dash at a time of 4.37 seconds.
hard work pay off https://t.co/blDTJ8EOLw— Darrius Clemons (@DarriusClemons) July 19, 2020
That speed and his overall performance at the camp was good enough for Clemons, Oregon’s top-ranked player in 2022, to garner some interest from both Alabama and Clemson, as the two programs are expected to get on the phone with the top-20 receiver at some point this week.
Clemons holds 20 offers, including from Michigan, Oregon, Penn State and Stanford.
Top photo: Jordan Hancock (Rusty Mansell/247Sports)