The future stars of Ohio State football officially begin their college careers, as standouts from all over the country put pens to their National Letters of Intent.
Ohio State identified Miamisburg five-star offensive tackle Josh Myers very early in the process as someone who could help protect former prized quarterback recruit Danny Clark, and offered him a scholarship in March 2014.
The Buckeyes rarely offer offensive linemen they've not seen in person at on-campus camps, but Myers' talent isn't typical, so his recruitment won't be either. He was the first player in the 2017 class offered by Michigan, and he's got offers from Kentucky, Tennessee, Cincinnati, Ohio, Indiana and Illinois, as well. This is not a player to wait on, and Ohio State is one of the handful of schools to recognize it.
Myers visited and earned scholarship offers from Alabama and Michigan State before he finally camped at Ohio State over the summer, where he was one of the youngest prospects at Friday Night Lights. He then took an unofficial visit during the Buckeyes' 50-28 win against Cincinnati that fall.
The Myers File
SIZE: 6-foot-6, 306 pounds
SCHOOL: Miamisburg (OH)
COMPOSITE RANKING: ★★★★★
COMPOSITE RANK: 3(OT)
“The visit went really well. Everything definitely lived up to the expectations,” Myers said. “The Buckeyes always treat me really well, and we've got great relationships with the coaching staff there … I would say there's a different comfort level [right now] with Ohio State. I enjoyed getting the chance to watch them coach up close.”
Myers also traveled to Michigan, Notre Dame and Tennessee during the season, but it was already clear Ohio State was going to be the team to beat. Myers agreed and committed to the Buckeyes during Junior Day in January 2015.
“It's not often a sophomore is a 'must get,' but Myers is,” a source close to the program said. “He's got All-American written all over him and might be the best tackle to come out of Ohio since [Hall of Famer Orlando] Pace. He's got that kind of potential … He's a great kid, too. He comes from a great family and he's the type of person that others will want to line up with. [He's] everything you want in a football player.”
Myers shut down his recruitment from there. He returned to Ohio State several times, of course, over the next two years for numerous camps and official and unofficial visits but never once wavered in his commitment.
The only flip fans had to worry about came when Myers wanted to show off his ridiculous strength. Exhibit A:
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) May 10, 2016
“Power snatching 155 pounds with one hand? That's the kind of strength that turns an abnormally large teenager into a five-star, can't-miss offensive line prospect, which is what Josh Myers is.”
In his preparations [for the U.S. Army All-American Bowl], the offensive tackle prospect pulled off a feat that those running the Renegade Warehouse previously thought impossible. He flipped a 1,000-pound industrial tire the gym bought from a concrete plant in Troy. No other patron of the gym, let alone an 18-year-old, had accomplished that.
The 6-foot-6, 306-pound Myers is expected to compete for a starting spot along the offensive line this coming season. He'll shift over to guard in an attempt to replace starter Billy Price, who will transition to center next season.
Though he showed his versatility at the Army Bowl, it certainly won't be easy for Myers to start as a true freshman. There's a reason Michael Jordan last year became the first true freshman to start on the Ohio State offensive line since the aforementioned Pace more than 20 years ago.
Myers notably has to improve in pass protection — something he's openly admitted — but he doesn't think he'll have difficulty transitioning to the next level.
"I have learned and spent a lot of time working on technique in run and pass blocking. I think for me it is more of just perfecting that technique, more specifically in my pass protection."
— Ohio State Football (@OhioStateFB) January 9, 2017