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.
Grayes on similar path as Olave?
When Chris Olave was first being recruited by Ohio State, he wasn’t really being recruited by Ohio State.
“They weren’t on my radar at all,” Olave said on Wednesday. “When I first met him, they were coming to see my quarterback and my coach called me out of class to come catch balls for my quarterback. That first interaction was with Coach Day, and he told me to come out for a camp in the summer. I wasn’t really looking to come out because I wasn’t a big recruit. He reached out to me again after my third game of my senior year, and we just kept building up from there and he ended up offering me mid-season.”
Olave never truly thought he was going to get an Ohio State offer extended to him, so he didn’t give the Buckeyes a ton of thought until Day finally offered him, and despite being all the way out in California, Olave “ended up making the best decision at the end.”
So, Day’s reputation as a recruiter preceded him in getting out in front of a recruitment that wound up being a huge get for the program.
We could wind up headed down a slightly familiar path with Brian Hartline and his recruitment of Arizona 2022 commit Kyion Grayes out of Chandler (Arizona) High School.
Just like Olave, Grayes is an unheralded three-star recruit from the west coast. Uncannily, Grayes and Olave’s frame and rankings both match up very similarly when placing them side by side:
As of right now, Grayes appears to be a take for the Buckeyes, and he is looking to make a visit to Columbus at some point in the near future. There has already been one Crystal Ball placed for Hartline and Ohio State to land Grayes. Just like Day saw something special in Olave before most other coaches, it appears Hartline has seen something special in Grayes before most other coaches, and we could wind up looking at that talent evaluation as pretty big down the road.
Wilson discusses dead period difficulties
Nearly a week ahead of the 2021 class’ Buckeye Bash get together, Ryan Day was asked about what safeguards the program was putting in place to make sure they don’t break any communication rules when those recruits were on campus.
In short, Day said the staff was completely staying out of it and that the situation was “really kind of out of our hands.”
This week, offensive coordinator/tight ends coach Kevin Wilson talked about something similar when broached about what the coaching staff’s thoughts are on recruit-directed visiting weekends (such as the Buckeye Bash or possibly even a Buckeye Bash 2.0 sprouting up).
Wilson essentially reiterated Day’s stance on those commit-led recruiting weekends.
“One, you worry now just about safety with guys coming and traveling and the cross pollination as they come from different parts of the country,” Wilson said. “Right now, we’re urging our fans to watch games separately. I know kids wanna get on campus or see a campus. Right now, we’ve had conversations with my youngest child (three-star recruit Toby Wilson) last night about a couple of the schools he’s looking at because his season ended Friday night: ‘Hey, you don’t have school Wednesday, Thursday, where do you wanna go? Do you wanna see the school?’”
Wilson also took some time to talk about how Ohio State is handling the extended dead period, one that is currently not slated to end until January 1 and is likely to extend into the spring. We’ve talked extensively before about the impact that game day visits can have on some high-profile recruitments when they visit The Shoe, and Wilson touched on that as well.
“Right now, I think we’re gonna be dead in recruiting,” Wilson said. “One, for me as a coach and as a parent, you’re gonna be dead in recruiting through December. There’s the early signing period we’re gonna have coming up. Some of these kids are 2022 guys, and they’re gonna have time. I think some of the older guys are just wanting to feel part of the camaraderie and part of the group.
“They don’t get to come to the games like they used to and get these friendships going in the season. So I think they wanna get together. We don’t encourage that because we are leery of the spread of the virus. But with other guys that haven’t been committed, I think guys just wanna see a campus and just get on campus and see what it looks like.”
And, finally, this is something that Andrew has hit on in the past, but the staff has done a better job that most of establishing and building relationships with commits and targets just via social media and Zoom calls. That’s something that is probably here to stay for the foreseeable future.
“Of course, here the best thing about being on campus is interacting with people, and right now we’ve gotta do it via the media – or via the internet, Zoom and FaceTime call,” Wilson said. “So you don’t get the face-to-face, which is the hard thing with recruiting right now. But it’s nice that they wanna get together. It’s just part of the things that kids are doing because kids feel like they’re missing out on things. We wanna encourage them to do things, but we’ve gotta follow the rules and the guidelines and, more than anything, stay safe and take care of each other. So that’s the way we’re embracing the kids talking about those sorts of things if they wanna see a place.”
Header photo: Kyion Grayes – Patrick Breen/USA Today