Reactions After Ohio State's Big Recruiting Weekend Including Priority 2024 Targets Jordon Johnson-Rubell, Payton Pierce and Elijah Moore

By Garrick Hodge on March 27, 2023 at 9:20 am
Jordon Johnson-Rubell
Photo courtesy of Jordon Johnson-Rubell

It was a big weekend for Ohio State recruiting.

More than 30 players were on campus Saturday to attend the Buckeyes' spring practice which included a scrimmage, with some high-profile names in attendance. 

Five players picked up offers from Ohio State over the weekend, including Preston Carey, Nicholas Rodriguez, Trent WilsonDarrion Smith and Reggie Powers III. We'll break down those players more in-depth in Monday's Hurry-Up, but in the meantime, Eleven Warriors caught up with 14 players that attended Saturday's scrimmage to get their thoughts on their visit.

The answers from the players interviewed are below.

  • Jordon Johnson-Rubell, 2024 safety: "It was a great visit getting to see coach Perry Eliano again. It was good to sit down with him in the film room and a great experience to see the things they do and the things they could see me doing in their defense. He sees me as a Lathan Ransom type of guy who moves around the field and also gets down in the box. I also talked with Lathan about the way he does things, his time at Ohio State and how he had to come in and grind, got hurt, recovered from obstacles and now is one of the best players on their defense."
  • Payton Pierce, 2024 linebacker: "I had never been to Columbus before but I always watched Ohio State. So I just wanted to come down and see what it was like. I came down and it blew me away. I didn't know what to expect but it blew me out of the water. It was great watching practice and watching the coaches. They're elite at every level of the program, from the coaches to the players interacting with each other really shows why they win so much and why they're so consistent. I got a really good taste of that. The campus and staff they have there, it's on a whole other level. That really stuck out to me."
  • Elijah Moore, 2024 wide receiver: "Coach Day was just telling me how much appreciate me coming down because it was a big practice day for them and he really wanted me to get a feel for the competition and fun they have. He also made sure my family and I were his first meeting of the day to show the importance of how much he wanted to speak with me and get this commitment process moving. Coach Hartline and I just talked about the receivers for this year and the production levels of Ohio State’s offense and how they are the best offense in college football. It's the best place to be for a wide receiver, without a doubt. My highlight was watching the receiver group practice and seeing the connection between coach Hartline and the offense.
  • Ian Moore, 2024 offensive lineman and Ohio State commit: "I got to talk to a lot of the O-line guys on the visit, Marc Nave, the Armstrong twins, and a couple of the ‘25 guys. It was really just a 'Hi, how you doing, how’s the offseason, conversation with most of them. But me and Marc talked some more in-depth like what we want to do when we get on campus and where coach (Justin) Frye sees us, those kind of things. I thought practice went great. Really liked the way coach Frye and coach Mike (Sollenne) were coaching where they’d get in your face but also just talk to you about what you did wrong."
  • Jakob Gude, 2024 safety: "It was a great experience, honestly I loved the environment. 
    I loved how everything was about competing. I loved the intensity of the coaches and practice too. I talked to coach Day, coach (Tim) Walton and coach (Perry) Eliano they all were pretty much getting to know me more and stuff."
  • Alijah Carnell, 2024 defensive lineman: "I loved every part of the visit but the best part would have to be when I joined the defensive line during a meeting. Sitting with all of the guys and hearing coach Johnson talk. You can see how great of coach he is and how much he knows about being a great defensive lineman."
  • Ryan Montgomery, 2025 quarterback: "It was super surreal to be able to watch them practice/scrimmage and see my brother in pads so that was really cool watching him go at it. I was with Coach Dennis the whole day. I was right with him the entire practice on the field as if I was on the team. I then watched film post-practice with Coach Dennis and the quarterbacks for a while. Coach Dennis really prioritized me and we just talked about how I can always use him as a resource and that they are really going to start recruiting me very hard here in the next few months."
  • Tavian McNair, 2025 wide receiver: "I had a chance to meet with coach Day after their spring practice, but I spent most of the time with coach Hartline and coach Frye. I learned a lot about their commitment to making every person that’s apart of their program the best version of themselves. They want to help every individual maximize their potential so they are successful in life after football and so they can win a National Championship too. Ohio State is definitely a great place and it was a lot of fun."
  • Trent Wilson, 2025 defensive lineman: "I loved the visit. I got to meet coach Larry Johnson. He impressed me a lot with his regiment. He told me that he liked me a lot and that we should establish a close relationship over the next two years and that I should come visit the school a lot more. I liked the competitive part of the practice, the whole team really got after it."
  • London Merritt, 2025 defensive lineman: "It was a wonderful experience, I got a chance to speak with coach Ryan day and coach Larry Johnson. The common theme I picked up on from the coaches is brotherhood, always be a competitor, and family."
  • Darrion Smith, 2025 defensive lineman: "It was a really nice experience. I've always wanted to visit Ohio State. I loved being able to watch the team compete. It was really nice. The d-line moved fast and were always competing. They really had a lot of chemistry with each other."
  • Jackson Wiley, 2025 wide receiver: "The experience was great, it was competition day so a lot of competitive energy throughout the building."
  • Preston Carey, 2026 defensive lineman: "It was an amazing visit. Right when I walked in, the vibes were amazing. There were a lot of people there and I think it was family practice day. I got to see some familiar faces. The vibes were immaculate. The thing I always do on visits is I put myself in the players' shoes and watch their practice and meetings and watch how they interact and everything. Because that could be me. Overall it was so great because the coaches were hyped when they made a big play but they also knew when to get serious and break down film. It was awesome and a place I could definitely see myself in another few years when it's time."
View 8 Comments