Realistic 2019 Expectations for the 5-Star Prospects from Ohio State's Incoming Recruiting Class

By David Regimbal on April 22, 2019 at 2:45 pm
Garrett Wilson

Ohio State's 2019 recruiting class ranked just 14th nationally, but that's primarily due to a lack of quantity, not quality.

Combining Urban Meyer's sudden departure with the scholarship crunch new head coach Ryan Day inherited, the Buckeyes' incoming class was bound to be the smallest in years.

Day inked just 17 signings for the '19 class, by far the fewest among teams that finished in the top 25 for last year's recruiting cycle. In fact, no other top 25 class signed fewer than 21 players.

That suggests Day packed a lot of star power in his 17 additions, and the numbers back that up. The soon-to-be Buckeye freshmen boasted an average player rating of 91.87, which ranked third nationally behind only Alabama and Georgia.

What does that mean?

Simply put, the incoming freshmen are highly rated, but they're joining a deep roster and have a tough hill to climb for early playing time. 

Ohio State's '19 class was headlined by a trio of 5-star prospects. What are the realistic 2019 expectations for these three players?

Zach Harrison, Defensive End

The crown jewel of Ohio State's 2019 recruiting class was Zach Harrison, the 5-star defensive end and No. 12 overall prospect who chose the Buckeyes over rivals Michigan and Penn State.

Despite the departures of Nick Bosa and Dre'Mont Jones, Ohio State is still loaded along its defensive line. But Harrison is the type of talent you'd be foolish to keep off the field. He'll line up on the edge in traditional sets, but he showed the versatility to move inside in the Buckeyes' "rushmen" package this spring.

Harrison will see the field early and often, and with guys like Chase Young, Jonathon Cooper, Tyreke Smith, Robert Landers and Jashon Cornell on the line, he'll have plenty of one-on-one matchups to take advantage of.

Over/under 2019 projection: 6.5 sacks

Garrett Wilson, Wide Receiver

Like Harrison, Wilson came to Ohio State and joined a deep and experienced position group at wide receiver. The Buckeyes lost a trio of senior starters in Parris Campbell, Terry McLaurin and Johnnie Dixon, but K.J. Hill, Austin Mack, Binjimen Victor and Chris Olave are ready to step into primary roles.

But Wilson enrolled early to take part in winter conditioning and spring practice, and that's where he showed he's ready for the next level. While admitting Wilson still has a lot of growing to do, Day spoke highly of him this offseason.

"[Wilson's] skill set is off the charts," Day said. "His ball skills, adjusting to the balls down the field, route running ability, length, as good as I've been around."

Wilson put all of that on display during Ohio State's spring game. He hauled in four catches for 44 yards that included a circus-catch touchdown over a leaping defender.

In Day's pass-happy offense, Wilson's numbers should be really impressive in 2019.

Over/under 2019 projection: 550 receiving yards, 5.5 touchdowns

Harry Miller, Offensive Lineman

Ohio State went into the offseason extremely thin along its offensive line, but Day made a number of moves this winter to alleviate the pressure up front. That started by signing four linemen in the '19 class, but the big news came after signing day when the Buckeyes landed Rutgers transfer Jonah Jackson.

The situation isn't as dire as it was a few short months ago, but Ohio State is still short on experienced linemen. That could open the door for Harry Miller, the 5-star center who was ranked the No. 30 overall prospect in the 2019 class.

Miller played center in high school, but he could slide along any of the interior spots on the line. None of those starting spots would be up for grabs, but Miller should come in and compete for a backup spot at either guard or the center position.

If the first-team unit can stay healthy, he'll likely only see time in mop-up duty.

Over/under 2019 projection: Five games played, redshirt

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