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.
Recruits react to Big Ten’s return
For weeks – well, months, really – we have seen Ohio State commits and targets yearn for the Big Ten’s return this fall on social media and in interviews with the media all over the state and country.
At a little past 8 a.m., multiple reports started surfacing that the league would be announcing a return on Wednesday, and that fed all the way through the official announcement on the conference’s website at 9:12 a.m.
Once the news hit, it sent some fist pumps and loud shouts echoing through the homes that house future Buckeyes.
“I was excited to hear the news,” 2021 running back commit TreVeyon Henderson told Eleven Warriors. “I can’t wait to watch Ohio State take the field and dominate again.”
The news broke early in the morning, so Henderson said the 2021 commits’ famed group chat had yet to get too wild in the hour or so after the announcement.
“They’re just waking up so it’s kinda slow right now,” Henderson said with a laugh.
BIA!!!! Cant wait to watch!! https://t.co/GKWFRN7MCK— TreVeyon Henderson (@TreVeyonH4) September 16, 2020
Out in Kansas, where 2022 athlete commit Dasan McCullough is continuing to prep for his season debut on Thursday night, the Blue Valley North star was ecstatic.
“I’m pumped!” McCullough said. “Super excited to watch my team go to work!”
Sounds like the 2022 commits’ group chat was a little bit more wide awake, as McCullough said he and his teammates “were definitely all really excited.”
“I’m very happy to see it come back,” Hicks said. “I want to know if they will allow recruits to come. And I’m just waiting on visits.”
“The Big Ten deserved to have a football season and compete with other top teams,” Powers said. “I was happy for everyone in the Big Ten, knowing how much everyone put into the season and to get their chance to play in bowl games and in the playoffs.
“We all kinda thought they would have a season so it wasn’t a huge shock to us, but definitely happy that it’s back on. … I saw someone put out like a week ago that they were probably going to have it, but it’s very exciting that it actually did because I wouldn’t wanna go a college football season without Ohio State.”
Powers says that he and linebackers coach Al Washington “talked about it a couple days before, but he never knew anything on if we were gonna have a season. He’s probably really busy now that they have to get ready for a game in October.”
And, as Ryan Day said, the Buckeye coaching staff believes this is a “once-in-a-lifetime” team that has the opportunity to win a national championship, and it looks like we may see the Buckeyes earn that shot.
“They’re saying it’s the best team they have coached at Ohio State, so we will see,” Powers said.
For 2022 tight end commit Bennett Christian, he said he got a really quick text from Buckeyes offensive coordinator/tight ends coach Kevin Wilson that said “We are a go. We start October 24th. It’s time!!”
That was enough to get Christian juiced up in the morning Georgia hours.
“When I first got a text from Coach Wilson, I was extremely hyped that football was being played in Columbus!” Christian said. “It’s something we have all desperately wanted, and it’s awesome they get to play!”
Dead period likely to be extended
Whether or not the news comes out on Wednesday or later in the week, today is a bit of a good news/bad news day in terms of recruiting.
On the same day that the Big Ten announced its October return, the NCAA Division I Council held its latest meeting, and one of the items on the agenda was whether or not to extend the recruiting dead period through October. It’s a damn near certainty that the dead period will be extended, so even though Ohio State looks like it will be holding games in The Shoe, the program’s targets will not be able to attend in person.
One idea that has been thrown around (I first heard this idea on the 247Sports Football Recruiting Podcast, and I believe it was Blair Angulo whom I first heard say this) is to slap a GoPro camera on the helmet of a walk-on or seldom-used player in order to give recruits a visual of what an entire game day is like – everything from what pregame is like in the locker room, the leadup to a game, running through the tunnel, the action on the sidelines and postgame celebrations (assuming a victory) – even if it’s severely watered down without the presence of fans.
Update: The NCAA DI Recruiting Dead Period has been officially extended until January 1, 2021.
A player who I believe will ultimately end up flipping to Ohio State, recently offered Louisville offensive tackle commit Zen Michalski, got a ratings boost on Wednesday. The 6-foot-6.5, 290-pound Michalski got bumped up into four-star status per 247Sports’ metrics, which boosted him into the No. 624 overall spot, No. 49 offensive tackle and No. 10 in Indiana (all increasing from No. 677 overall, No. 56 OT, No. 12 Indiana).
The 247Sports’ latest rankings didn’t have any major effect on any of Ohio State’s 2021 commits’ rankings.