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.
Ewers gives Buckeyes major momentum for star-studded receiver group
Unless you’ve been in a coma for the past 24 hours and the first thing you did when you regained consciousness was come to read recruiting news at Eleven Warriors – and, really, why the hell wouldn’t that be your first stop? – then you know that Ryan Day and Corey Dennis dropped the massive-ist of bombs on the college football world last night by landing five-star quarterback Quinn Ewers.
It’s banana land how well the Buckeyes have been recruiting over the past year, and Ewers’ pledge only adds to the momentum of an already surging program. For one, it serves as the latest step in Day achieving his goal of making Ohio State QBU – one of his primary goals when he took over as head coach – and it also gives the program momentum for a slew of star-studded receivers.
And as we have been discussing for a few weeks now, five-star receiver Caleb Burton – who dropped down to No. 15 overall and No. 2 at receiver in 2022 following the latest rankings release, mostly due to the season-ending injury he suffered at the beginning of his junior season – has talked openly in the past about wanting to team up with Ewers in college. I typically tend to guard against the dreaded package deal phrasing that almost never comes to fruition, but this is one that does make sense.
For one, it’s not quite the same as a pair of good friends or teammates in high school very early in their recruiting process saying they want to go to the same school and then once a full year of recruiting passes that they wind up being in completely different situations in their recruitments. (i.e. One player has the caliber of being a take at an Ohio State, Clemson or Alabama and the other is only the caliber of being a take at a Penn State, Florida State or Tennessee.)
Burton could be the next domino to fall, though it’s possible he waits until he can take a visit (whether that’s a self-guided visit or an unofficial or official visit whenever it is that the dead period is lifted), and Brian Hartline had a nice and subtle message last night in a Twitter exchange with the father of freshman wide receiver Jaxon Smith-Njigba.
Need a couple more TX WRs...— Brian Hartline (@brianhartline) November 20, 2020
Tx OH! Congrats bro https://t.co/r2VrwoAKPG— Jaxon Smith-Njigba (@jaxon_smith1) November 20, 2020
Four-star California receiver C.J. Williams and four-star Texas receiver Armani Winfield – who just put the Buckeyes on his recently released top-nine list – are Ohio State's other top pass-catching targets in the class of 2022. Perhaps it can get back in the sweepstakes for Oklahoma commit Luther Burden, the Buckeyes are also high on three-star Arizona commit Kyion Grayes and Chicago’s Kaleb Brown and recently offered four-star Kojo Antwi are on the board as well.
But it’s not just the receivers whom Ohio State is now in a terrific position to land. Building a recruiting class around a top-level quarterback is a tried-and-true strategy, and the Buckeyes now have the biggest centerpiece of the class with a bevy of offensive and defensive talent to surround him. It’s only going to grow from here on out.
Oh, and on another big note, check out this stat about the Buckeyes' success in recruiting the state of Texas' best talent:
OSU (6) has 2 more commitments from 5-stars in Texas than UT (4) since 2017:— Ari Wasserman (@AriWasserman) November 20, 2020
Browning (OSU, '17)
Okudah (OSU, '17)
Foster (UT, '18)
Sterns (UT, '18)
Wilson (OSU, '19)
Whittington (UT, '19)
Smith-Njigba (OSU, '20)
Jackson (OSU, '21)
Sanders (UT, '21)
Quinn Ewers (OSU, '22)
Buckeyes offer New Jersey defensive end
Though he may only be listed as a three-star prospect, the Buckeyes capitalized on the momentum of the Ewers commitment by extending an offer to New Jersey’s Jihaad Campbell.
Campbell comes in at an athletic 6-foot-4, 220 pounds out of Timber Creek High School, and he adds Ohio State as his 24th offer to combine with offers from Clemson, Florida, Florida State, Michigan, Oregon, Penn State and Texas.
Blessed to receive an offer from THE OHIO STATE UNIVERSITY! pic.twitter.com/m3RZ8GIKeX— Jihaad Campbell (@RealJihaadC) November 20, 2020
“I was excited to get the offer,” Campbell told Eleven Warriors. “It means a lot to me and my family. Me and Coach (Larry) Johnson had a conversation before, and he talked about how he loves my film and how hard I work. Coach (Matt) Barnes (who gave me the offer) I had a couple conversations with. He’s a great guy along with being a great coach.”
Despite only being ranked No. 475 overall, No. 23 at weakside defensive end and No. 17 in New Jersey’s 2022 class, Campbell isn’t paying attention to the rankings, and the Buckeye coaching staff isn’t either.
“Rankings never really meant anything to me. I just go out there and play the sport I love and go 100 percent at it,” Campbell said. “(The Buckeyes) like that I am athletic at that position and I can play to my fullest potential. … They think I have great ball skills and that I am a versatile player.”
Ohio State’s recruitment of Campbell started fairly recently, but the communication has picked up between the two sides. Campbell says the Buckeyes project him to play either defensive end or outside linebacker in college depending on how his body and skill set develops.
Notre Dame offers Wagner
Dayton’s Aamil Wagner out of Wayne High School is one of the state’s best, most athletic offensive tackles in the 2022 class, but he has yet to be extended an Ohio State offer.
However, Wagner on Thursday did receive a major offer, as he announced that Notre Dame came calling with his 23rd total offer.
Im extremely blessed to receive my 23rd Division 1 football offer from The University of Notre Dame pic.twitter.com/iDIR3odQOb— Aamil Wagner (@AamilWagner) November 20, 2020
Now that the Irish and their reputation for sending offensive linemen to the league are on board, it’s sure to make an impact in Wagner’s recruitment. The 6-foot-6, 250-pounder is ranked No. 120 overall, No. 11 at offensive tackle and No. 3 in Ohio. I believe an offer from the Buckeyes will eventually come Wagner’s way.
Brown earns Under Armour bid
Jyaire Brown, who is one spot behind Wagner as the No. 4 prospect in Ohio’s 2022 cycle, also announced some big news Friday. The four-star cornerback out of Cincinnati has received an invitation to play in the Under Armour All-America Game.
At the Elite Underclassmen Camp in Obetz this summer, Brown believed he had done enough at that showcase to earn an invite to the Under Armour game, just as fellow Buckeye commit C.J. Hicks had done. That invite did not come that day, but months later he has finally secured the bid.
Header photo: Quinn Ewers – Mike Roach/247Sports