This is shaping up to be one of the biggest recruiting weekends at Ohio State in a long time.
Even in comparison to the home opener against Oregon on Sept. 11, this game will be loaded with name-brand recruiting prowess.
Ohio State’s quest to beat Penn State and make a favorable impression on recruits seems to be off to a good start this week. While James Franklin doesn’t even know what team he’s playing on Saturday, the Buckeyes are expected to have many of their top targets from the 2022, 2023 and 2024 recruiting classes in attendance to watch them play the Nittany Lions.
“It gives everyone a chance to see what a big time college atmosphere is like and obviously what Buckeye Nation is like playing in a prime time game,” Ryan Day said of the Penn State game Tuesday. “That’s why you come to Ohio State is to play in games like this, and we want recruits to embrace that. We want the guys who want to play in those games to come here. When they see it with their eyes, it’s a lot different than seeing it on TV … They’ve been excited about this game for a while. They have their red outfits ready to go.”
The expected visitors list for Saturday’s game, which you can see below, includes nearly 50 Ohio State commits and targets of note. Having compiled a few of these earlier this year, it’s important to note that everything is fluid and recruits can change their minds about visits often, while more can be added later in the week. At least it’s not a noon kickoff this time, right?
The list below has been compiled from a combination of our own intel, reporting from other outlets and announcements from the recruits themselves. We will include an updated list in Friday’s Hurry-Up.
Class of 2022: Caden Curry (DL), Omari Abor (DL), C.J. Hicks (LB), Kyion Grayes (WR), Kojo Antwi (WR), Caleb Burton (WR), George Fitzpatrick (OL), Avery Henry (OL), Kam Dewberry (OL), Earnest Greene (OL), Shemar Stewart (DL), Hero Kanu (DL), Christen Miller (DL), Jimmy Rolder (LB), Terrance Brooks (DB), Ryan Turner (DB), Xavier Nwankpa (DB), Zion Branch (DB), Marvin Jones Jr. (DL), Kye Stokes (DB)
Class of 2023: Richard Young (RB), Justice Haynes (RB), Chris Culliver (WR), Zachariah Branch (WR), Ty Lockwood (TE), Luke Montgomery (OL), Joshua Padilla (OL), Brycen Sanders (OL), Keith Sampson (DL), Sonny Styles (LB/DB), Troy Bowles (LB), Jaiden Ausberry (LB), Elliot Washington (DB), Christian Gray (DB), Willtrell Hartson (RB), Anthony Brown (WR), Matayo Uiagalelei (DL), Kayden McDonald (DL), Jshawn Frausto-Ramos (DB)
Class of 2025: Ryan Montgomery (QB)
Note: 2022 Ohio State defensive end commit Kenyatta Jackson Jr. had hoped to visit this weekend but will not be able to make it, his father told Eleven Warriors this week. Jackson Jr. hopes to attend either the Purdue or Michigan State game in November.
Toviano picks up OSU offer
Ohio State has offered another five-star cornerback from Texas. Javien Toviano, the 23rd-ranked player and the fourth-best cornerback in the 2023 class per 247Sports’ composite rankings, picked up an Ohio State offer on Monday night.
Toviano has 24 Division I offers to this point, including Alabama, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Oregon and Texas.
The Buckeyes are likely to take two cornerbacks in the 2023 cycle. If you’re a dreamer, it’s fun to imagine a future Ohio State secondary consisting of Toviano and fellow 2023 five-star cornerback AJ Harris.
Abor confirms visit
While we have him listed as an expected visitor above, it’s worth noting that five-star defensive end Omari Abor confirmed to 247Sports this week he went from an 80 percent chance of attending the game to 100.
“I’ll be there,” Abor told 247Sports. “Of course my dad will be with me and maybe my mom. We’re staying until Sunday morning.”
Abor is ranked as the No. 24 overall prospect and the second-best defensive end in the 2022 class. The 6-foot-4, 240-pound prospect, who also visited Ohio State in June, told 247Sports the schools he is considering the most are Ohio State, Alabama and Texas A&M.