Seven Recruits Earn Offers, Tyler Atkinson and Will Smith Jr. Also Stand Out at Ohio State’s First Camp of June

By Garrick Hodge on June 1, 2022 at 10:28 pm
Will Smith Jr.
Will Smith Jr.

Wednesday was a good day to be an Ohio recruit at Ohio State camp.

Seven total prospects received offers from Ohio State after participating in the first of OSU’s seven camps this summer for high school football players. Four of those players hail from the Buckeye State.

Three-star 2023 Winton Woods cornerback Jermaine Mathews proved more than deserving of his offer with one of the best individual days of any prospect at the camp. The 6-foot, 175-pound Mathews won nearly every one-on-one matchup he faced and ran a 4.35-second 40-yard dash. A handful of Ohio State players, including Winton Woods alum Miyan Williams, were cheering on Mathews on every rep and ran up to celebrate with him after several pass breakups. 

Mathews’ recruitment could move quickly. When asked how much an Ohio State offer would change his recruitment, Mathews smirked and told Eleven Warriors “a lot.” He previously set a July 4 commitment date, but said he’s unsure if he will stay on that timeline. He plans to visit Columbus again before making a decision.

Ohio State has one cornerback committed in the 2023 class: Dijon Johnson. The Buckeyes would like to take three cornerbacks in the current cycle. With an offer in hand, it seems Mathews could be one of those three. 

Another Cincinnati product who received an offer on Wednesday was four-star defensive end Elias Rudolph.

‘I feel like I did good, I feel like I've received the offer,” Rudolph said of his performance shortly after his workout ended. “That's what I want.” 

The lean 6-foot-4, 220-pound Taft High School product dazzled OSU with his quickness and pass-rushing skills throughout the day. He’s the seventh defensive end to land an Ohio State offer in the 2024 class.

Four-star 2024 safety Garrett Stover, the cousin of current Ohio State tight end Cade Stover, was another in-state prospect who earned an OSU offer Wednesday. 

Stover worked out with OSU as a safety, although some other schools recruiting the 6-foot-2, 195-pound prospect see him as a linebacker. 

Three-star 2024 Springfield cornerback Aaron Scott was offered even though he didn’t necessarily have the best camp. Scott was beat several times in one-on-ones, but in fairness to him, he was sporting a cast on his right hand due to an injury. Nevertheless, his father Aaron Scott Sr. told him an injured hand is no excuse not to camp at OSU. Ryan Day rewarded his grit with an offer.

“Coach Day told me he liked my competitiveness,” Scott told Eleven Warriors. “He told me he wanted to grow our relationship and that he liked how fast and athletic I am. I could have just came to camp and watched, but I decided to do one-on-ones anyway (despite the injury) and they told me they loved how competitive I am.” 

The 6-foot-1, 160-pound cornerback has already picked up 16 Division I offers which include the likes of Notre Dame, Michigan and Tennessee. Scott became the sixth cornerback OSU has offered in 2024.   

Three out-of-state prospects also received Ohio State offers on Wednesday.

Despite the big-time commitment of 2024 five-star quarterback Dylan Raiola, Ohio State is still in hot pursuit of a signal-caller in the 2023 class. It may have found one of its top candidates to fill that role on Wednesday. The Buckeyes offered four-star Texas quarterback Austin Novosad Wednesday after he worked out with Ryan Day alongside three-star Nevada commit Jax Leatherwood

Novosad has been committed to Baylor since December, so it will be interesting to see how aggressive Ohio State is in its efforts to flip him. Novosad is ranked as the 308th-best prospect and the 17th-best quarterback in the 2023 class, per 247Sports’ composite rankings. 

Along with Rudolph, another defensive end who received an offer Wednesday was four-star Michigan product Jalen Thompson. Thompson impressed Larry Johnson with his tenacity and determination, along with several pass-rush moves that resulted in him winning one-on-ones. 

The 6-foot-3, 245-pound prospect originally planned to have his recruitment wrapped up by the end of the summer, but Ohio State’s offer has changed things for him. Thompson, who said OSU is recruiting him as a linebacker/edge hybrid, said he’d like to make a return visit to OSU before committing. While five 247Sports Crystal Balls have been cast in favor of his hometown Michigan State Spartans, Ohio State could be a player for Thompson.

“Now that they’re on the board, it’s one more thing I have to evaluate,” Thompson told Eleven Warriors. “I have to sit down and rethink things through.” 

It’s not too often Ohio State is someone’s very first offer. But that’s exactly what happened with Indiana wide receiver Mylan Graham, who was OSU’s seventh and final offer of the day. Graham does not yet hold a composite ranking, but should see his stock skyrocket after getting an offer from Brian Hartline.

Other standouts

What were you doing in eighth grade? Well, eighth-grader Tyler Atkinson was busy being arguably the smoothest-looking player the entire day at either session on Wednesday. Yes, you read that right. Atkinson, who became OSU’s first offer from the 2026 class on May 12, moved with a quickness that was exceptionally noticeable compared to the other defensive linemen that camped, and that’s with a handful of four-star recruits sprinkled in there. 

In an interview after his workout, Atkinson said he watches highlight videos every day of former Ohio State defensive end Chase Young, his favorite player to watch.

Ohio State defensive line commit Will Smith Jr. also participated in Wednesday’s camp even though he’s already locked in his future with the Buckeyes. Smith won the majority of his one-on-one matchups and looked impressive throughout the day.

There’s a new Top Gun movie out, and four-star West Virginia 2024 wide receiver Jerrae Hawkins paid homage to the need for speed by posting two insane 40-yard dash times. Hawkins ran a 4.31 on his first attempt and an eye-popping 4.25 in his second go-round. Hawkins has not picked up an offer from the Buckeyes yet, but he’s certainly worth watching as a prospect based on pure speed alone. 

Three-star 2024 Ohio product Brian Robinson deserves the Iron Man award of the day. It didn’t lead to an Ohio State offer on Wednesday, but Robinson camped in both the morning and afternoon sessions, working out as a defensive end early in the day and then running drills with linebackers later on.

View 13 Comments