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.
“Dream school” offer for Tate
As Ohio State continues to stack elite class after elite class at the receiver spot, it’s looking like a bit of an empire at the position for as long as Brian Hartline sticks around.
First came 2019 with Garrett Wilson (No. 20 overall, No. 2 WR), then 2020 with two five-stars headlining the haul (No. 3 overall and No. 1 WR Julian Fleming; No. 29 overall and No. 5 WR Jaxon Smith-Njigba), then 2021 with three more top-100 players (including five-star and No. 1 WR Emeka Egbuka) and eventually 2022 with Caleb Burton (who was once listed at No. 14 overall and No. 1 WR before a slide due to an injury that forced him to miss his junior season).
It looks like Hartline and the Buckeyes are fully primed to keep the receiver conglomerate going in 2023.
Carnell Tate, a four-star out of IMG Academy ranked No. 47 overall and No. 7 at WR, announced an Ohio State offer last week, and he marks one of four receivers Hartline has now offered in the 2023 cycle. All four of them rank inside the top 110 overall. That list is highlighted by five-stars Brandon Inniss (No. 7 overall, No. 1 WR) and Jalen Hale (No. 12 overall, No. 2 WR), plus Burton’s former teammate in Braylon James (No. 109 overall, No. 17 WR).
And then there’s Tate, who we got to catch up with a little bit a couple days after he announced an offer that sent some shockwaves through his house.
“I was shocked at the offer. All my life I wanted to go to Ohio State. I grew up a Buckeye fan,” Tate told Eleven Warriors. “It meant everything to me to get my dream school. My dreams are coming true.”
I will be at Ohio State June 8th & 9th. #GoBuckeyes— Carnell Tate (@carnelltate_) April 27, 2021
Originally from Chicago, Tate grew up in the Midwest and is plenty familiar with Big Ten country and the Buckeyes. That comfort and familiarity has only grown stronger as his communication has increased with the coaching staff.
“This was me and Coach Hartline’s second time talking. I talk to the Coach (Keenan) Bailey almost every week, and we go over my spring practice film,” said Tate, who told us over the weekend that he is coming up to Columbus for an unofficial visit June 8-9. “We talk about what I could have done different for better separation, and we talk about what I did good. Hartline is a great guy. He doesn’t offer many receivers so it was great knowing he wants me to be a Buckeye.”
When it comes to top receivers whom Tate attempts to emulate and glean something from their film to his own game, the 6-foot-2, 185-pounder marks down Davante Adams and Stefon Diggs as two he watches often – and then two current Buckeyes in Smith-Njigba and Wilson.
“I like how Davante gets off the line and freezes the DB,” Tate said. “Stefon’s route running is everything, he makes guys look silly. Jaxon routes players up and makes great catches. Garret Wilson makes plays on the ball. Any jump ball is Garrett’s.”
Clearly a lot of love for the Buckeyes, and he’s been able to turn those things that he’s watched into those lofty rankings and a bright future.
“I bring everything to the table,” Tate says enthusiastically, before noting a skillset marked by the versatility that the Buckeyes love in their pass-catching prospect. “I can line up as a slot and outside. I make plays and put on a show wherever I am. I can stretch the field, and I’m a jump-ball receiver. There’s no limit to what I can do. They like me more as a slot. My entire high school career I’ve lined up outside. I make plays.”
And as far as his skill set could translate if he winds up in Columbus?
“I love their offense. They get their receivers the ball and allow them to make plays,” Tate said. “If you can ball they’ll give you a chance to show that. Over at OSU, receivers are everything. That’s probably the position that makes the most plays other than the QB.”
Stokes on fire
It happens time and again in the recruiting process, especially a bit later in the cycle, that a handful of guys receive Ohio State offers once more film gets in the hands of the Buckeye staff.
There was Zen Michalski, Pat Coogan and Christian Leary as a few prime examples in the 2021 class, and Kyion Grayes, Omarion Hampton and Aamil Wagner, plus Chris McClellan, Domonique Orange and Curtis Neal (all defensive tackles) as a handful of examples in 2022.
And now, after a Monday offer announcement, we can add the red-hot Kye Stokes to that list.
WOW, after a great conversation with @CoachTonyAlford I am beyond blessed to receive an offer from THE Ohio State University !!!#GoBuckeyes @ArmwoodHawksfb @Coach_EDavis @rickyreddd023 @CoachKWorden @TeamTampa813 @ArmwoodAcademy pic.twitter.com/VFDSIzEE8g— Kye Stokes (@kye_stokes) April 26, 2021
Stokes is a 6-foot-2, 185-pounder in the 2022 cycle out of Florida’s Armwood High School. Listed as the No. 56 athlete and No. 77 player in Florida, Stokes does not yet have a composite ranking even this late in the cycle and is listed as a three-star prospect by 247Sports.
But Stokes is heating up this spring, this week rather, as he has added offers from Alabama, Georgia, Florida, LSU, Miami, Notre Dame and Ohio State in just the past seven days.
Much of this interest from those bluebloods stems from his versatility to be both an athletic, ball-hawking safety (or even a cornerback) and his capability to play at receiver at the next level as well. It also stems from his elite speed after he sprinted his way to a 10.80-second 100-yard dash finish at a recent track meet.
Stokes has official visits to Indiana, Northwestern and Duke set up, but with his explosive set of offers this late in the process, don’t at all be surprised if he eschews those visits for opportunities to take official visits to some of these schools that have recently offered.
Header photo: Carnell Tate – Allen Trieu/247Sports