Skull Session: Dawand Jones and Paris Johnson Jr. Are Highly Rated, Ohio State Continues Recruiting Streak, and Jashon Cornell Impresses

By Kevin Harrish on July 20, 2022 at 5:59 am
We've got a couple of tackles in today's skull session.

Turns out, people still expect Jaxon Smith-Njigba to be good this season.

Wild stuff.

Song of the Day: Fete.

 TOP-FIVE TACKLES. If Pro Football Focus' ratings are any indication, it looks like C.J. Stroud is going to be extremely well protected this season as the Buckeyes have two of the nation's five best offensive tackles heading into the 2022 season.

Rank Player, School
1 Peter Skoronski, Northwestern Wildcats
2 Dawand Jones, Ohio State Buckeyes
3 Jordan McFadden, Clemson Tigers
4 Cooper Beebe, Kansas State Wildcats
5 Paris Johnson Jr., Ohio State Buckeyes
6 Blake Freeland, BYU Cougars
7 Connor Galvin, Baylor Bears
8 Zion Nelson, Miami Hurricanes
9 Broderick Jones, Georgia Bulldogs
10 Blake Fisher, Notre Dame Fighting Irish

We've got Dawand Jones at No. 2, behind only Northwestern's Peter Skoronski, then Paris Johnson Jr. checking in at No. 5 – but PFF concedes this is mostly just projection since he'll be playing a completely different position this season.


Johnson will be moving back to tackle in 2022 after spending his debut starting season at right guard as a sophomore in 2021. Despite not playing his natural position at tackle, the 6-foot-6, 315-pound five-star recruit earned a 79.1 PFF grade that ranked 16th among Power Five guards. From Week 4 on, Johnson posted an 83.5 PFF grade that ranked seventh. He placed third in run-blocking grade and allowed just five pressures — none of which were a sack or a hit — over that nine-game span.

So let's take some inventory here – Ohio State arguably has the nation's top quarterback, top running back, top wide receiver, and two top-five tackles. God help any defense trying to slow down this offense.

 TRAIN KEEPS ROLLING. My good pal Ari Wasserman over at The Athletic made quite the incorrect prediction a few months ago that Ohio State's recruiting might take a step back this year.

Given that the Buckeyes current sit at No. 1 in the class rankings and ain't done yet, Ari has graciously admitted his wrongness, conceding that Ohio State is headed for yet another top-five recruiting class.

2. Ohio State: I was dumb enough to float a theory that Ohio State’s recruiting could take a hit this year based on a handful of circumstances, but Ryan Day and his staff have proved yet again that the Buckeyes are a recruiting machine. Ohio State had a rough week — Downs is seemingly all about Alabama now, and four-star linebacker Tackett Curtis of Many (La.) High committed to USC — but the Buckeyes already have six top-100 players committed and could add six or more players to a class that already ranks No. 1. It seems well within the realm of possibility that Ohio State could sign 10 top-100 players in 2023.

The wild thing is that a top-five class is a prerequisite around these parts. If you don't routinely sign a top-five class, you're getting burned in effigy and chased out of town.

What Buckeye fans really want is that elusive No. 1 overall ranking. Not sure it's going to happen this year, but Ryan Day's certainly making moves.

 MAKING COACH MICK PROUD. Jashon Cornell is fighting to make the Detroit Lions roster this season, but he's already made quite the impact on the team. Cornell is out here setting multiple weight room records.

Success in the weight room probably isn't going to help him make a roster on its own, but I'll tell you what, it can't hurt!

 JUST IN TIME! The news of Manti Te'o's fake girlfriend is still one of the most stunning and confusing push notifications that has ever come to my phone, and we're gonna get to relive it with an inside look in a couple of weeks.

It's kinda bullshit that they aren't just doing this as a special episode of MTV's Catfish, but I'm gonna tune in regardless.

 SONG OF THE DAY. "Late Night Talking" by Harry Styles.

 NOT STICKING TO SPORTS. A husband is accused of murdering his bride on a luxurious Fiji honeymoon... An ex-CIA agent teaches us about evasive driving... A therapist explains whether it's worse to be in a relationship with a narcissist or a psychopath... The last licks of Pablo Sandoval... America’s favorite family outings are increasingly out of reach...

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