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.
Week 5 FNL preview
Ohio State is set to have 10 commits in the 2021 and 2022 cycles who will be in action as we kick off another week of high school action.
Episcopal (Texas) offensive guard Donovan Jackson, Massillon Washington receiver Jayden Ballard, Ironton linebacker Reid Carrico, La Salle safety Jaylen Johnson, Revere offensive lineman Ben Christman and Ensworth (Tenn.) defensive back Andre Turrentine will also be suiting up for the 2021 class on Friday night.
South Warren (Ky.) defensive back Jantzen Dunn, is still nursing a Grade 2 quad strain and will miss his third consecutive game. Fellow defensive back Denzel Burke and his Saguaro (Ariz.) teammates will play their season opener on Oct. 1, and Streetsboro (Ohio) defensive tackle Mike Hall is sidelined for the final two regular-season games with a broken hand.
Four members of Ohio State's 2022 class will be on the field Friday, with in-state commits in Marysville linebacker Gabe Powers and Archbishop Alter linebacker C.J. Hicks joined by Allatoona (Ga.) High School's Bennett Christian and Blue Valley North (Kan.) athlete Dasan McCullough.
|OG DONOVAN JACKSON (2021)||EPISCOPAL (TEXAS)||@ LEGACY SPORTS SCIENCE||7 p.m.|
|WR JAYDEN BALLARD (2021)||MASSILLON WASHINGTON||ST. IGNATIUS||7:30 p.m.|
|LB REID CARRICO (2021)||IRONTON||@ CHESPEAKE||7 p.m.|
|S JAYLEN JOHNSON (2021)||LA SALLE||@ CATHEDRAL (IND.)||7 p.m.|
|OG BEN CHRISTMAN (2021)||REVERE||@ WESTLAKE||7 p.m.|
|S/CB ANDRE TURRENTINE (2021)||ENSWORTH (TENN.)||MONTGOMERY BELL ACADEMY (TENN.)||7 p.m.|
|LB C.J. HICKS (2022)||ARCHBISHOP ALTER||@ ARCHBISHOP MCNICHOLAS||7 p.m.|
|LB GABE POWERS (2022)||MARYSVILLE||@ OLENTANGY BERLIN||7 p.m.|
|TE BENNETT CHRISTIAN (2022)||ALLATOONA (GA.)||SOUTH COBB (GA.)||7:30 p.m.|
|ATH DASAN MCCULLOUGH (2022)||BLUE VALLEY NORTH (KAN.)||BLUE VALLEY||7 p.m.|
Pickerington North five-star defensive end Jack Sawyer has opted out of his senior season. Ohio State's two running back commits in 2021, TreVeyon Henderson (Virginia) and Evan Pryor (North Carolina), and tight end commit Sam Hart (Colorado) have opted out of their senior seasons as well, with each of their states pushing football back to February. It's looking like there is a good chance Hart will end up playing in his senior season after all, however, as the Colorado High School Activities Association voted to allow schools the option of playing football this fall, and his Cherokee Trail High School program began practicing on Thursday.
Defensive tackle commit Tyleik Williams (Virginia) will also not be in action this fall due to the state's postponements, while cornerback Jordan Hancock (Georgia) also opted out of his senior season despite his state moving forward with a fall season.
Three other 2021 Ohio State commits' senior seasons are still up in the air.
Quarterback Kyle McCord and wide receiver Marvin Harrison Jr. are still facing the possibility of being unable to play this fall after the Philadelphia Catholic League postponed its fall sports season to the spring, and their St. Joseph's Prep program is still looking to play as an independent.
Cornerback Jakailin Johnson and his De Smet (St. Louis, Missouri) team are preparing to play this fall, but if and when their season will begin remains to be determined, as St. Louis County is currently not allowing high school football games to be played. That ruling is still in effect, as high school football remains sidelined in the county.
Our staff here at Eleven Warriors will be taking a break from hitting Friday night games this weekend, but we are slated to get back at it in some capacity next week.
Jackson jersey presentation
Jackson was one of the featured athletes on Wednesday night’s latest episode of NBC Sports’ Road to the Dome series in which players are awarded their All-American Bowl jerseys in a virtual ceremony. Jackson talked about how honored he was to find his way to the all-star showcase.
“Being an All-American, to me, is just an illustration of all the work I’ve put in, and I thank God, first, for putting me on the right path,” Jackson said during the jersey presentation. “I’d like to thank my amazing parents for giving me the sport that I love. I’d like to thank my coaches, past and present, for teaching me the things that I know and getting me to where I am. I’d like to thank my peers and friends for encouraging me along the way.”
On the verge of a record
A couple times in the Hurry-Up space, I’ve mentioned that Ohio State’s 2021 class is likely on the verge of holding the most commits from one class to play in the All-American Bowl. I didn’t know what the record was, but I figured getting to 11 or 12 would be on the doorsteps of the most ever from one class.
Turns out, 12 is the exact record, as the 2008 Notre Dame recruiting class – which featured 23 players – holds that record, according to 247Sports.
Following this week’s All-American Bowl commitments from Williams and Harrison, the Buckeyes are on the doorsteps of tying that record, as they currently have 11 commitments in the class set to play in the game. Williams and Harrison joined Jackson, McCord, Henderson, Pryor, Ballard, Hall, Carrico, Jakailin Johnson and Hancock as All-American Bowl participants.
In an interview with All-American Bowl media director Gus Ramos, Jackson said it has been a concerted effort between the 2021 commits to gather in one place to play in the same game.
“This is definitely something that we tried to get together,” Jackson said. “Some guys were committed to other games or were doing other things, and we’re like, ‘Hey, let’s work this out here, and let’s work for the common good here.’ So we all eventually decided we’re all gonna go the All-American route, and so we’re gonna have fun.”
.@Gatorade Refueling Stop— All-American Bowl (@AABonNBC) September 24, 2020
The 2021 All-American Bowl will feature 12 Ohio State commits. @D_jack78 discusses the decision for the future Buckeyes to come together in San Antonio.#AAB21 #GoBucks #AllAmericanBowl https://t.co/HI5OPOx8PM pic.twitter.com/j3AOY1RkOl
Any day now, the Buckeyes could officially get to No. 12 and tie that record. Sawyer has been invited to both the Under Armour All-America Game and the All-American Bowl, but he confirmed once again with us on Thursday that he has still not yet decided which one, if either, he will play in. Ohio State also has a pair of leans in uncommitted Washington prospects Emeka Egbuka and J.T. Tuimoloau who are slated to play in the All-American Bowl.
Outside of the one-on-one drills and the weeklong practices to showcase their talent against America’s best players in their class, the biggest benefit of the entire week for a school’s commits is to build some early camaraderie in San Antonio. That happened instantaneously for the Buckeyes’ 2020 All-Americans, as there was a lot of bonding that took place all week last January.
Jackson is excited about that aspect of the entire trip.
“I’m looking forward to seeing everyone in one place because I’ve met most of them, but I haven’t seen all of them,” Jackson said. “So I’m looking forward to seeing everybody.”
Header photo credit – Donovan Jackson flanked by his parents, Melanie and Todd Jackson – 247Sports