Tim Walton continues to make a great first impression on the recruiting cycle.
After landing a premier cornerback commitment from Dijon Johnson in April, Walton continued that momentum after landing four-star Georgia cornerback Kayin Lee on Monday.
Lee had just finished taking his official visit to Ohio State last weekend and saw everything he needed to see to pull the trigger and give his verbal to the Buckeyes. OSU was Lee’s last official visit of the summer after he took trips to Nebraska and Oregon earlier in June.
The Lee File
- Class: 2023
- Size: 5-11/185
- Pos: Cornerback
- School: Cedar Grove (Ellenwood, Georgia)
- Star Rating: ★★★★
- Composite Rank: #145 (#18 CB)
The Buckeyes have been high on Lee as a prospect for over a year, extending him an offer on June 2, 2021 after he ran a 4.41 40-second dash at an Ohio State recruiting camp. It could be argued that Lee was the No. 1 cornerback on Ohio State’s board at the time outside of five-star AJ Harris.
“They’re very high,” Lee told Eleven Warriors about where Ohio State stood last fall.
Lee seemingly came off the board in late September, committing to his hometown Georgia Bulldogs, which Lee said was his father’s favorite school.
|WR||BRANDON INNISS||★★★★★||#18 NATL | #2 WR||6-0 | 190||American Heritage (Fort Lauderdale, Florida)|
|WR||CARNELL TATE||★★★★★||#28 NATL | #3 WR||6-2 | 185||IMG Academy (Bradenton, Florida)|
|OT||LUKE MONTGOMERY||★★★★||#42 NATL | #4 OT||6-5 | 280||Findlay (Findlay, OH)|
|WR||NOAH ROGERS||★★★★||#50 NATL | #9 WR||6-2 | 180||Rolesville (Rolesville, NC)|
|CB||DIJON JOHNSON||★★★★||#95 NATL | #11 CB||6-1 | 190||Wharton (Tampa, FL)|
|TE||TY LOCKWOOD||★★★★||#131 NATL | #8 TE||6-5 | 225||Independence (Thompson's Station, TN)|
|CB||KAYIN LEE||★★★★||#145 NATL | #18 CB||6-2.5 | 175||Cedar Grove (Ellenwood, GA)|
|S||MALIK HARTFORD||★★★★||#149 NATL | #8 S||6-2.5 | 175||Lakota West (West Chester, OH)|
|IOL||JOSHUA PADILLA||★★★★||#180 NATL | #8 IOL||6-4 | 265||Wayne (Dayton, OH)|
|S||CEDRICK HAWKINS||★★★★||#210 NATL | #14 S||6-0 | 175||Cocoa (Cocoa, FL)|
|RB||MARK FLETCHER||★★★★||#219 NATL | #10 RB||6-1 | 225||American Heritage (Fort Lauderdale, FL)|
|OL||AUSTIN SIEREVELD||★★★★||#222 NATL | #9 IOL||6-5 | 320||Lakota East (Middletown, OH)|
|WR||BRYSON RODGERS||★★★★||#270 NATL | #32 WR||6-0.5 | 175||Wiregrass Ranch (Zephyrhills, FL)|
|DL||WILL SMITH JR.||★★★||#451 NATL | #55 DL||6-3 | 260||Dublin Coffman (Dublin, OH)|
|Prospect Rating Data: 247Sports|
But in late February, Lee decided to go in a different direction and decommitted from Georgia after UGA secondary coach Jahmile Addae left the Bulldogs to join the staff at Miami. Of course, Lee’s previous lead recruiter from Ohio State, Kerry Coombs, did not return to the Buckeyes’ staff after the 2021 season.
Nevertheless, Walton and Lee hit it off immediately, with Walton relating to Lee with his Georgia roots. Credit should also be given to OSU defensive quality control coach Miguel Patrick in helping to land Lee, as Patrick was Lee's former coach at Cedar Grove High School (Ellenwood, Georgia). After Lee decommitted from Georgia, the Buckeyes were always seen as the favorite in the recruiting industry to land Lee, and his commitment came to fruition a few months later.
Lee is considered the 145th-best player in the 2023 class and the 18th-best cornerback, per 247Sports’ composite rankings. He’s the second cornerback to commit to OSU in the current cycle, joining Johnson, and the 14th OSU commit in 2023 overall.
The 5-foot-11, 185-pound Lee picked the Buckeyes over offers from Georgia, Nebraska, Oregon, Arkansas, Auburn, Cincinnati, Colorado, Florida, Florida State, Kentucky, Louisville, LSU, Michigan State, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Ole Miss, Pittsburgh, Tennessee, USC, Texas and UCF.