The Hurry-Up: TJ Shanahan and Clay Wedin Discuss Impactful Ohio State Offers, Raesjon Davis “Sticking Around” for Senior Season, J.T. Tuimoloau and Emeka Egbuka May Follow Suit

By Zack Carpenter on July 24, 2020 at 6:30 pm
Raesjon Davis

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.

New offers

As we mentioned on Thursday, after sending out multiple offers for what started feeling like every week in the spring, the Buckeyes cooled off during the end of June and throughout all of July. No offers had been dished out to prospects of any class during that time, and only one recruit in the 2023 class (California quarterback Malachi Nelson) had earned an offer. 

That came to an end on Thursday, as Ohio State showed it is already looking further into the future by extending offers to Florida offensive tackles TJ Shanahan and Clay Wedin.

TJ Shanahan

Shanahan is a massive 6-foot-5, 300-pound rising sophomore at Timber Creek High School in Orlando whose recruitment has blown up this spring. It’s still very early in the recruiting process for Shanahan, who was named to the MaxPreps 2020 Preseason Sophomore All-American First Team ahead of this coming season. 

“Definitely has been (hectic),” Shanahan told Eleven Warriors. “Got my first Power 5 offer in late April, and now I have 22 offers, so I would say it’s been pretty hectic. ... It's been very surreal. I'm just so blessed.”

Shanahan’s first offer came from Florida on April 19, followed by Oregon (April 20), Florida State, Nebraska and LSU (April 22) and a host of other major programs such as Georgia, Arizona State and USC. 

For Shanahan and Ohio State, their relationship goes back to 2019 when he first caught their eye, though it’s just now starting to build.

“(Our relationship) started yesterday actually,” Shanahan said. “I went to a camp last year around this time, so I would say that’s when I started to get on their radar. Coach (Tony) Alford gave me the offer and it was very impactful. I really like Ohio State.”

It’s still incredibly early, so Shanahan says “as of right now, there are no current leaders in my recruitment,” which doesn’t come as much of a surprise. 

He likes what the Buckeyes offer, though, and ever since that camp – in which he worked with both Greg Studrawa and assistant offensive line coach Kennedy Cook – Ohio State has liked what Shanahan offers. 

“One thing they all really like about my game is how physical and tenacious I am on the field,” says Shanahan, adding that Ohio State views him as an offensive tackle and not an interior lineman.

Clay Wedin

Almost exactly an hour after Shanahan announced his offer from the Buckeyes, 6-foot-6, 275-pound offensive tackle Clay Wedin of Carrollwood Day High School in Tampa announced that Ohio State had come calling him as well.

The Buckeyes’ offer was preceded by big-time offers from Georgia and USC the two days prior, and it was followed Thursday night by an Alabama offer as he is starting to garner interest from America’s best programs as he added those four schools to offers from Florida, Florida State, LSU, Michigan and Penn State. 

“I was on the phone with Coach Alford and Coach Cook and still extremely excited and happy to get this offer. It really means a lot,” Wedin told Eleven Warriors. “I started talking to Coach Alford earlier this year and eventually got on the phone with Coach (Kevin) Wilson.”

Wedin says he’s not completely sure what got himself onto the Buckeyes’ radar, and they haven’t told him what has stood out about his film or even what position they like him at. It’s still too early for all of that. 

However, they did like some of the intangibles Wedin possesses and the word that we have used so often in detailing a trait the Buckeye staff loves in its recruits – versatility. 

“They didn’t say whether they like me at one (position) more than the other, but I pride myself at being versatile,” Wedin said. “They said they really like what they see and hear as far as progress and work ethic. I am sure they have had some discussions with my coaches, but I don’t really get too caught up with what they talk about.”

Just like Nelson and Shanahan, the recruiting process is still at such an early stage that no program has truly risen above the others in terms of which one Wedin likes the most. The young lineman is also staying very level headed about the process. 

“There are a few programs that do stand out, but I am not making any judgement until I see all of the schools to see how they feel,” Wedin said. “It is early for me so I am pretty real with understanding that offers are simply a way to say ‘we think this guy has potential.’ In a year or two, we will see if I am where I need to be to really earn a spot with these teams.”

So, as he alludes to, it’s a waiting game to see if the work he’s putting in on the field, the weight room and film room is going to pay off. Until then, Wedin says he will continue to build relationships with guys like Alford, Cook, Wilson and Studrawa.

“The coaches have been awesome,” Wedin said. “Easy to talk to and very informative. Still building that relationship.

“(My dad) and my trainer have always told me to stay humble. Just because you get offers doesn’t mean much. Gotta keep working.”

Davis, others plan on playing senior season in spring

As we have continually mentioned over the past couple of weeks, players in the 2021 class are going to have a huge decision to make when it comes to handling their high school careers if football is moved to the spring.

We already know that guys like Jack Sawyer and TreVeyon Henderson have said they will continue forward with the plan to enroll early, but it’s not a universal decision from all prospects. 

Ohio State linebacker target and LSU commit Raesjon Davis told Rivals’ Julie Boudwin that he will be “sticking around” for his senior season at Mater Dei (Calif.) High School. 

Five-star Washington quarterback commit Sam Huard also announcing that he will be staying for a spring senior season, and on the 247Sports Football Recruiting Podcast, 247Sports national analyst Brandon Huffman – who is based in Seattle and has great connections on the West Coast – said he believes J.T. Tuimolouau will stay for his senior season in the spring and that Emeka Egbuka is leaning towards returning for a spring season as well. Those decisions will be coming after the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association's decision to move this year's football season to March 2021.

As we said on Wednesday, Huffman is probably the recruiting analyst most in touch with the recruitment of Tuimoloau, and Huffman believes the No. 2 overall player in the country will be taking his recruitment deep into the process – perhaps as late as February. 

On Friday afternoon, Huffman released a story with an extensive interview with Egbuka in which Egbuka discussed the fact that he is still chasing career records and a state championship ring at Steilacoom High School, and that those could both factor into whether or not he returns for a final season or moves forward with his plan to enroll early:

"I'm still working on a final decision," said Egbuka. "I feel the NCAA might come out and say recruits can’t early enroll anyway, so that would make the decision easier. But I need to get that ring. We were so close last year. Coach (Colby) Davies (Steilacoom's head coach) reminded me I'm on the verge of breaking the state records. I talked to him and some other guys, like Sam (Huard) and Shedeur Sanders, and what they were doing. I think I want to play my senior season.

Egbuka also discussed his final four of Ohio State, Oklahoma, Clemson and Washington with Huffman, saying that he speaks often with a bevy of Buckeye coaches and fellow receivers such as Garrett Wilson, Chris Olave and Julian Fleming.

Top photo: Raesjon Davis – Ken Ruinard/USA Today

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