The Hurry Up is your nightly dose of updates from the Ohio State football recruiting trail, keeping tabs on the latest from commits and targets from around the country.
ALREADY AMONG THE STATE'S BEST
Ohio State handed out its first in-state offer for the Class of 2020 to Cincinnati St. Xavier offensive tackle Paris Johnson Jr. during his unofficial visit on Friday afternoon.
— Paris Johnson Jr. (@ParisJohnsonJr) December 8, 2017
“It is amazing to receive an opportunity to play for your state team,” Johnson told Eleven Warriors. “They have an impressive tradition and culture.”
The 6-foot-7, 260-pound Johnson is not yet ranked by any major recruiting sites, but he'll surely be in the discussion to be the top prospect in the state for his class. He already holds offers from Cincinnati, Clemson, Michigan State, Rutgers, Toledo and Virginia, and more are sure to be on their way in the coming months.
While on campus, Johnson toured the Woody Hayes Athletic Center, spent time in the “incredible” weight room and met with several coaches, including head coach Urban Meyer, offensive line coach Greg Studrawa, assistant coordinator and area recruiter Kerry Coombs and offensive coordinator Kevin Wilson.
“I love coach Stud and his energy,” Johnson said. “He is very passionate. The strength coach [Mickey Marotti] was also one of my favorite people I met today. [They] all gave my mom and I a fantastic visit and showed us great hospitality.”
Johnson also learned about the Buckeyes' Real Life Wednesdays internship and job shadowing program, and was more than impressed with every aspect of his visit. He plans to be a sports analyst and entrepreneur after he's done playing football.
Ohio State doesn't often hand out offers to in-state prospects this early in the process because they'll typically jump at the chance to play for the Buckeyes right away. But Johnson plans to take things a lot slower and see what other schools have to offer.
“I'm excited about this opportunity, but right now, I have two years before I have to make my decision,” he said.
MORE TIME TO FIGURE IT OUT
Chattanooga, Tennessee, Baylor School three-star offensive tackle Walker Culver — one of Ohio State's few remaining targets along the line — was supposed to visit Virginia Tech this weekend, prompting many to believe a decision between Buckeyes and Hokies would soon follow.
His brother's birthday is this weekend, however, so the official visit got pushed back to next weekend, Dec. 15.
The 6-foot-6, 273-pound Culver, you may recall, had been committed to Colorado for over a year before he reopened his recruitment last month. The decision came on the heels of a trip to Columbus and subsequent offer from Ohio State.
With the Buckeyes planning to take two more offensive lineman this cycle, Culver's versatility has become an intriguing option. Fairfield five-star Jackson Carman and Maryland four-star Rasheed Walker sit above him on the priority chart, however, and sources close to the program have told Eleven Warriors the staff has taken a “wait-and-see approach” when it comes to accepting Culver's commitment.
Meyer and Studrawa were in Tennessee on Monday, at which time they stopped to see Culver and four-star offensive tackle commit Max Wray. Though he's not certain to make a commitment and sign with the school of his choice during the Early Signing Period, that was likely their final pitch to the talented lineman.
If Ohio State ultimately has the room for Culver, I believe he'll end up in Columbus. But the staff might have to decide soon or risk losing him to Virginia Tech, as the Hokies will undoubtedly roll out the maroon carpet next weekend.
DOWN TO ONE
Ohio State four-star running back commit Brian Snead was hoping to finish his senior season with a state championship, but came up just short of that goal as Armwood, Florida, fell to Miami Northwestern, 21-16, at Orlando's Camping World Stadium on Friday night.
The Hawks jumped out to a 9-0 first-quarter lead behind Snead's tough running, but the Bulls stormed back to score 21-straight points in the second and third quarters. Armwood cut the lead to five and had the ball during the game's final possession, but failed to get a first down at their own 39-yard line.
Snead finished the game with 49 yards rushing on 19 carries and one reception for 21 yards.
Newest Ohio State quarterback commit Matthew Baldwin, meanwhile, led Lake Travis, Texas, to a 38-17 win over San Antonio O'Connor in the Alamodome on Saturday afternoon. He completed 21-of-27 passes for 192 yards and two touchdowns — both two Dublin native and four-star wide receiver target Garrett Wilson — and rushed for 21 yards and another score.
The Cavaliers now advance to the state semifinals against Katy, which will kick off this Saturday in the same location. The last time the two programs met was in the 2015 state title game, a 34-7 win for the Tigers.