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.
Dead period vote
Soon enough, all of us recruiting talking heads and recruiting diehards will have some big news. Whether that’s of the good or bad kind remains to be seen.
The NCAA Football Oversight Committee last week recommended to the NCAA Division I Council for the recruiting dead period to be extended past the current end date of April 15. There had been momentum and hope gaining for the end of the dead period and the implementation of a quiet period from April 16-June 30 (meaning visits for recruits during a crucial time in their athletic careers).
According to the calendar on the NCAA’s website, the Division I Council – the group that has the actual power to extend or end the dead period – will meet on Wednesday afternoon to vote on that subject.
Obviously, frustration and angst is continuing to grow stronger among class of 2022 (and 2023) prospects, whether they are committed or uncommitted. These athletes are dying to finally meet the coaches in person who have been recruiting them via Zoom and make visits to see their future schools or be able to compare programs as they make one of the biggest decisions of their lives.
Plenty of players we’ve spoken with are frustrated over the continued dead period extensions, and we are sure to be flooded with them again this week depending on the outcome of the vote.
There is a massive handful of recruits who are waiting to make a decision until visits are allowed, and Ohio State is waiting on several key targets such as 2021’s J.T. Tuimoloau and 2022’s Kiyaunta Goodwin (who has actually been to campus before, so that helps in that recruitment), Damari Alston, Kojo Antwi, Zach Rice, Dallan Hayden, Caden Curry, Shawn Murphy, Denver Harris and Ryan Turner. And on and on.
Hafley's success, Turner a Hancock comp?
One of my favorite stories from the 2021 recruiting class is the story of Jordan Hancock's initial Ohio State recruitment.
Hancock initially visited Ohio State for its October win over Wisconsin in 2019, coming to Columbus ranked as a three-star recruit outside of the top 300 overall and not even in the top 40 as a cornerback.
But Jeff Hafley saw something in Hancock and his film that he knew made him a top-of-the-line cornerback – one who could be a game changer at the next level.
“They say I have tremendous ball skills, that I can tackle, how fluid I am with my hips and how polished I am footwork-wise and just how good of a person I am,” Hancock told Eleven Warriors previously. “Me and Coach Hafley have a really good relationship. When I went up there, we talked for like an hour about football. If I didn’t have to leave, we would’ve been talking for even longer. But he’s at Boston College now.”
Hafley (with the help of Mark Pantoni and Co., of course) had a knack for being able to identify talent early and often – talent that may not have gotten onto a national radar quite yet, but talent that eventually would. That’s exactly what happened with Hancock, who rose to become a top-75 player and the nation’s No. 4 cornerback in the 2021 class. He eventually flipped from Clemson to Ohio State to join Jakailin Johnson as the highest-ranked Buckeye cornerback duo in a recruiting class since Jeff Okudah and Shaun Wade in 2017.
Hafley is back at it again on the East Coast, continuing to make Ryan Day proud as the first branch of his coaching tree – and becoming an (albeit small) adversary on the recruiting trail. Hafley and his staff have been stepping out of Boston College’s typical recruiting footprint over the 2021 and 2022 cycles, which helped the Eagles sign one of their best classes of the past 11 years in 2021 and has them on track to follow it up with another good one in 2022.
All of this is leading up to this point: that Hafley has been using the Hancock formula on another cornerback of a similar ilk in three-star corner Ryan Turner.
Just like Hancock once was, Turner is an underrated cornerback in the 2022 cycle who currently comes in at No. 562 overall, No. 55 at CB and No. 57 in Florida out of Chaminade-Madonna Prep. Hafley and Boston College (including up-and-comer defensive backs coach Aazaar Abdul-Rahim) locked in on Turner with an early offer before the blue bloods came calling.
That offer, and Turner’s relationships with Hafley and Abdul-Rahim, has Boston College in actual contention to land him and will have it on a top schools list at some point down the road.
With Ohio State, Clemson and Georgia entering the picture with offers over the past couple of weeks, though, that could turn the tide against Hafley and the Eagles.
Still, it shows that 1) Hafley appears to be using the same type of blueprint he harnessed at Ohio State to find some recruiting success at BC and 2) Turner could be well on his way to becoming the 2022 cycle’s version of Hancock as a fast riser with Ohio State and Clemson duking it out for him.
It will be a fun ride following Turner and his recruiting journey.