Ohio State has been Ian Moore’s top choice in his recruitment for months, so he decided to make it official on Thursday.
From the moment Ohio State offensive line coach Justin Frye offered Moore after wowing Ohio State in one-on-one and individual drills at a recruiting camp in June, the Buckeyes emerged as the clear frontrunner for the four-star offensive lineman. Nevertheless, he wanted to do his due diligence.
Throughout late summer and the fall, the top-100 prospect kept looking for reasons to prolong his recruitment. He didn’t want to pull the trigger too early and waited to see if any other school emerged as a legit option that could compete with what the Buckeyes offered. Whenever Moore would visit or talk to another school, he’d instantly see how it matched up with Ohio State. That was a telltale sign.
The Moore File
- Class: 2024
- Size: 6-5/295
- Pos: OL
- School: New Palestine (New Palestine, Indiana)
- Composite Rating: ★★★★
- Composite Rank: #82 (#4 IOL)
“Every time I would try and compare a school, I'd always compare it to Ohio State,” Moore told Eleven Warriors in an exclusive interview ahead of his commitment. “And every time I'd see something that this one school did, I'd be like, ‘Ohio State didn’t do that’ … I just kept circling back to there's no point, I know where I want to go. So I've known for probably a couple of months now.”
Moore took two gameday visits to OSU this fall, his first for the season opener against Notre Dame and the second coming on Sept. 24 when the Buckeyes played Wisconsin. Following his second visit, he envisioned wrapping up his recruitment in the next month or two. A few days ahead of his commitment Thursday, Moore had a conversation with his father about cutting his school list down and contacting those colleges to let them know they were out of the running. By the time he finished listing schools on the chopping block, he realized he had eliminated every college still in the running for his commitment except Ohio State, which made his decision easy.
He spent the rest of his week calling other schools to let them know he was headed elsewhere. But Moore didn’t even tell Ohio State he was committing until shortly before he announced it publicly Thursday when he hopped on a call with Frye, Mike Sollenne, Ryan Day and Kevin Wilson.
Moore didn’t hesitate when asked what sold him on committing to the Buckeyes.
“Their culture, honestly,” Moore said. “Culture, the coaches, the fans, the team. Growing up (in Indiana), you kind of grew up hating Ohio State because they beat your college team every week. But I mean, going there and being recruited by them, it was probably one of the best experiences I've ever had. Getting to see a couple of games there was incredible. Like, the atmosphere was insane. The players were top of the line. You can tell that they've been coached really well.”
Moore’s main factors in his recruitment were proximity to home, his family’s connection to the college, the school’s academics and the talent he’d be surrounded by. He still valued who he’d be coached by, but didn’t want to make it a top priority considering the turnover college football staffs can go through on a yearly basis. But Frye, a fellow Indiana native, was an exception and won over Moore in a big way over the last four months.
“I don't know if it's an Indiana thing. But Coach Frye literally sounds like my dad when he talks,” Moore said. “He feels like a family member and it was a big impact. I was comparing things, but it all narrowed down to (the coaching staff) and the distance. The distance was the main reason (I picked OSU), I mean, it's two and a half hours from my house. My dad's a big guy, he's 6-foot-7 and he doesn't fit on planes. It's good for them to be able to see me.
“And I know that when they come over, they're going to be treated like they're a part of the football team. And it's just having the coaches feel like family makes me feel like when my family comes to visit me, they're going to treat them like family.”
Moore is ranked as the 82nd-best prospect and the fourth-best interior offensive lineman in the 2024 class, per 247Sports’ composite rankings. Though most recruiting services have him listed as an interior lineman, Frye believes Moore could be a tackle at the collegiate level and play any of the five positions on the offensive line. The Indiana prospect has no preference on where he plays, though.
“I just want to play football," Moore said. "I don't care where. I'll go play wide receiver. I'm not saying I’ll be a good wide receiver, but if it gives me playing time, it gives me playing time.”
Moore is Ohio State’s second commitment in the 2024 class, joining five-star quarterback Dylan Raiola. Moore is already envisioning himself taking on the role of peer recruiter and said his main target will be fellow Indiana prospect Mylan Graham, a four-star wideout who was also offered by the Buckeyes in June.
New Palestine and Moore will begin the Indiana high school playoffs this week, and considering the Dragons are 9-0, Moore expects to be part of a long playoff run that ends with a state championship appearance on Nov. 25, the day before Ohio State faces Michigan. Even if New Palestine makes the title game, Moore said he hopes to return to Columbus for The Game.
In the meantime, Moore is relieved one of the biggest decisions of his life is now behind him.
“I mean, nothing's really gonna change (after my commitment), teams are still gonna recruit you,” Moore said. “But it's definitely going to be a big relief to kind of shun teams away and stop being a nice guy and pretty much say ‘Hey, I'm going here, and that's final.’”
Moore committed to the Buckeyes over offers from 22 other schools: Iowa, Wisconsin, Boston College, Central Michigan, Cincinnati, Duke, Florida State, Indiana, Iowa State, Louisville, Miami, Michigan State, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Carolina, Penn State, Purdue, Tennessee, Toledo, West Virginia and Western Michigan.