Despite Michigan Loss, Recruits Impressed by The Game's Atmosphere and Conversations with Ohio State Coaching Staff

By Garrick Hodge on November 28, 2022 at 11:35 am
KJ Bolden

Ohio State didn’t get the job done on the field in its 45-23 loss to Michigan, but a plethora of recruits attending Saturday’s game still enjoyed their visit.

Eleven Warriors caught up with 16 recruits who attended Saturday’s win and asked for their initial impressions and highlights from the visit. A quick note, a couple of premier prospects in the 2025 class that were scheduled to make the visit, Jadon Perlotte and Gideon Davidson, told Eleven Warriors they were unable to make it to Columbus this weekend. 

The answers from the players interviewed are below.

  • Four-star 2023 wide receiver commit Bryson Rodgers: “We’re good. I love Buckeye nation and I can’t wait to be on campus and make an impact to the team and community. Forever, go Bucks.”
  • Five-star 2024 safety KJ Bolden: “I enjoyed my time this weekend in Columbus. It’s not the outcome I expected but it’s still go Buckeyes! I spoke with Coach Day and Eliano and the message was clear, that I am a priority and they need me.”
  • Four-star 2024 offensive lineman commit Ian Moore: “I thought they played a great game. There were just some things that were rough in the second half. I still had an amazing time and I’m still a Buckeye through and through. It hurts a little but I know we’ll bounce back.”
  • Four-star 2024 defensive end Brian Robinson: “I think the game was everything we thought it would be. High energy, packed with excitement and intense fans for both sides. I didn’t get to talk to any coaches of my positions, but coach Tim Walton always makes sure he speaks to me and my father and Ms. Erin Dunston in recruiting as always make me feel welcomed.”
  • Four-star 2024 defensive end Elias Rudolph: “It was a crazy environment. (In regards to the game), don't count the GAME, make the GAME count!”
  • Four-star 2024 linebacker Kristopher Jones: “My visit to Ohio State was great. It was my third time up there and every time, they impress me. I mostly talked to coach Koy McFarland throughout the trip and I talked to coach Jim Knowles (Sunday). He told me with the athletic ability I have and the system he has in place, I could make an immediate impact on the defense.”
  • Four-star 2024 cornerback Miles Lockhart: “The game was a great experience, even with the outcome, I really enjoyed my time there. The fans from both teams were loud and up the whole game so you could feel that different type of energy. I got to talk with Tim Walton and he told me that they are obviously very disappointed right now, but they gotta move on and go on to the next.”
  • Four-star 2024 linebacker Edwin Spillman: “I had fun talking with the coaches! The coaches always show me and my family a lot of love. And I had a great time hanging out with the family and watching football! Nothing can beat that.”
  • Four-star 2024 defensive lineman Jacob Smith: “I don't know how any opposing team can hear anything. I didn’t talk to any coaches this time. I think they were locked in on the game."
  • Four-star 2024 defensive lineman Jerod Smith: “Beside the score, it was pumped. The stadium was loud the entire day. The fans stayed just about to the end to support the team.”
  • Three-star 2024 wide receiver Elijah Moore, who received an offer from OSU Sunday: (Getting the offer was) crazy. I was still processing it, I couldn’t believe it. I couldn’t be any more grateful. Me, my mom, dad, and sister went into coach Day’s office and he congratulated me with the offer.” 
  • Three-star 2024 offensive lineman Deontae Armstrong: “I thought the fans, students and players were electric. The atmosphere was great, even while coming into the stadium, the fans lined up, the tailgating, and energy during the game, all made for it to be a great atmosphere. I talked to coach Eliano (my area recruiter) before the game about how school and football is going. Overall, I enjoyed my time at Ohio State.”
  • Four-star 2025 linebacker Weston Port: “(The atmosphere) was impressive. The fans were super loud and really awesome. I’ve been in touch with Brent Zdebski, who works with the defense.”
  • Maryland 2025 safety Faheem Delane: “I thought that the OSU visit was great, being able to see the brotherhood after such a hard loss. I talked to coach Eliano and we just talked about the game for the most part and the gameplan.”
  • Ohio 2025 quarterback prospect Ryan Montgomery: “Despite the loss, I enjoyed the visit and the hostile environment in The Shoe for the game. I got to talk a little bit with coach Dennis before the game. I also got to be right next to the quarterbacks during their pregame drills. Every time I visit OSU, I feel more and more of a priority for them. Looking forward to growing my relationship with them!” 
  • Missouri 2025 tight end Landon Pace: “It was super electric, fans were cheering, shouting, booing 30 minutes before the game. That just shows why this is the greatest rivalry in college football. I talked to coach Kevin Wilson and he was just introducing me to other recruits and families.”
  • Georgia 2025 tight end Emaree Winston: “I love the atmosphere. the fans were even into the game when they were down two scores. That’s what you need in a big-time game like the team up north game.”

While most of the recruiting reaction was positive despite the loss this weekend, two Ohio recruits on a visit to OSU committed to Michigan within 24 hours of OSU’s defeat; three-star 2023 cornerback Cameron Calhoun and four-star 2024 offensive lineman Luke Hamilton. In fairness to OSU, neither player held an offer from the Buckeyes. Hamilton in particular was very candid about his recruitment by the Buckeyes in an interview with another outlet, but we’ll wait to get into that until Monday’s Hurry-Up.

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