An early look at the top 50 prospects in the state of Ohio for the 2013 class.
A Couple Things to Remember:
It is very early and this is all very fluid between now and next Signing Day. New players will emerge, others will rise, some will fall. This is in no way, a final ranking. It is actually only a starting point.
There will be over 150 Division-1 signees from Ohio this year. So this is only the top 25-30% of the state. There are many great players and Division-1/BCS prospects who are not listed here.
In general, we don't rank based off of offer lists because many offers are still left to be given and some reported offers cannot necessarily be verified. This list is based on film and in-person evaluations at camps and combines.
Allen Trieu: He's a dynamic player with the ball in his hands and I think he'll really thrive in Urban Meyer's offense at Ohio State. I don't the offense Middletown ran last year and him playing quarterback necessarily always shows off his best stuff, but he made it work and he won games that way. Once he's playing slot receiver or running back and out in space, people will see how dangerous he is.
Bill Greene: The top-ranked player in Ohio for the class of 2013, and he's been there since the first game of his junior season. A five-star prospect, and a player with the ability to put the football in the end zone from anywhere on the field. Played in a wide-open, spread attack as a sophomore and put up huge numbers making plays outside the hashmarks. Switched to the triple option as a junior, and did most of his damage between the tackles. Has speed, quickness and toughness, which will make him a success at whatever position Urban Meyer decides will be his best. He is a leader, and a player that will inspire his teammates with his play rather than his words.
Dave Berk: The question has always been if Marshall would be a quarterback in college. While there is always a chance for the Ohio State pledge to take a snap or two, his future for the Buckeyes will be as a “Big-Time” playmaker in the mold of former Urban Meyer standout and current Minnesota Viking Percy Harvin. Great physical abilities with speed, quick feet and the ability to make people miss in space.
Allen Trieu: Thomas has a college ready build already and I think one of his best assets is his speed. He closes fast to the football and he exhibited that breakaway speed on offense as well. He's simply an excellent athlete and given his attributes, he has a chance to be an early contributor at the next level.
Bill Greene: The Michigan commit might be the most versatile player in Ohio. He should play safety at the next level, but could also project as a tailback, wide receiver or cornerback. Thomas combines speed, quickness and great athletic ability with the love of contact. He is also an excellent wrestler and fine baseball prospect. Should end his high school career as one of the greatest all-around athletes in Stark County's storied history.
Allen Trieu: I think some may be surprised to see him this high initially, but he has a lot of what we look for in successful college backs, namely, low pad level, great balance and he runs hard every carry. It takes multiple guys to bring this kid down and he plays faster than his timed speed. His ability on defense only shows more of his toughness and strength.
Dave Berk: Two-way player who projects as one of the top running backs in the Midwest. Has good size at 5-foot-11, 210-pounds showing speed, power and balance. Capable of taking each carry to the house for a score or making the big defensive stop.
4 . Evan Lisle
OT | Centerville (Ohio) | commmitted to Ohio State
Dave Berk: The knock on Lisle is the fact he plays in a triple-option offense making some wonder if he’s got the tools to pass block. The Centerville (Ohio) High School product has the frame to add weight and is athletic enough to be a tackle at the next level. We have seen him pass block and he shows a solid kick step and the ability to battle speed rushers. Some may look to move him inside to take advantage of his already solid run blocking skills.
Allen Trieu: Love his frame and he's an athletic kid that certainly plays hard and finishes his blocks. There are still some technical things he has to work on, but the upside and the demeanor are both there, plus, he plays at a great program and sees good competition. Ohio State, Notre Dame, Alabama, Michigan and others have offered and it's easy to see why.
CB | Trotwood-Madison (Ohio) | committed to Ohio State
Bill Greene: Quite possibly the player with the most upside in the 2013 class in Ohio, because he is nowhere near where he will be in a few years. Can still improve his one-on-one coverage ability, but there is no doubting the vast physical talent. Burrows is the long, aggressive, physical cornerback college coaches are looking for, and he has the work ethic to be great. A player that is a leader, and while not the most vocal player, he commands the respect of his teammates.
Allen Trieu: He has the size to play anywhere in the secondary, and it's tough watching games from his junior year, because teams tended to avoid him. However, his increased role on offense showed off some of the athleticism and ball skills he has. I'd love to see him at a few more events this year just to see him challenged against some top receivers.
DT | Austintown (Ohio) Fitch | committed to Ohio State
Allen Trieu: This kid is a pure football player. He has a good motor and really gets after it. He plays more outside in high school than what he'll likely be in college. I think he'll be more of a nose tackle type when he gets to Ohio State. He's a high effort guy and while he may not be a track star, I think he's more athletic than people think. He does a nice job with his lateral movement and made a couple athletic rush moves on tape that I didn't know he had in him.
Bill Greene: Had a great junior season for Cleveland Heights in 2011, but really opened eyes at the Under Armour Junior Combine last January in Orlando. Gibson was a near-impossible matchup for some of the top cornerbacks in America. Has speed and great hands, but his greatest attribute is being able to make cuts at top speed. Has the ability to get deep, but will also make the tough catch going across the middle.
8 . Rob Wheelwright
WR | Walnut Ridge (Ohio) |
Allen Trieu: I really like Wheelwright's game. He's smooth, has some polish to him, and while he isn't a 4.3 guy, he can separate and also make plays after the catch. He also shows good ability as a return man. He's a different body type and style of receiver from his brother Ernie, but we think he can have just as effective of a college career.
Dave Berk: The Kettering (Ohio) Alter signal caller has the tools to beat you with his arm and feet. Plays in an option attack but has the arm to make all the throws and is not afraid to stay in the pocket until the last minute to make a play. Very solid technique for a young player and will be fighting to be Ohio’s top quarterback in the class.
TE | Pickerington (Ohio) North | committed to Michigan
Allen Trieu: We saw more of him as a defensive player as a sophomore, and it was clear then that he was a BCS level prospect, but the more we've watched him on offense, the more we've seen that's his future and that's where he's slated to play at Michigan. He's a taller kid and a good all around athlete, as his basketball exploits this season have proven. He's a matchup issue because of that frame and athletic ability, but don't count him out as a blocker. He's a tough ball player.
11 . Ben Gedeon
OLB | Hudson (Ohio) |
Allen Trieu: Gedeon is a fantastic athlete as evidenced by what he's done all over the field from running back to receiver to linebacker. He can definitely run and play a sideline to sideline game. He may not play the same level of competition as some of the other top linebackers on the board, but we feel he has the most upside of the bunch.
Bill Greene: Drawing comparisons to Braxton Miller, and is a true dual threat quarterback. Only threw four interceptions as a junior, while leading his team to a playoff win over Warren Howland. Great size at 6-foot-2, 205-pounds, with the speed and athleticism to play safety, which he does in obvious passing situations. Has a strong arm, but needs to keep his delivery shorter to improve his accuracy.
Bill Greene: An impressive all-around athlete, and a player that can play any of the three linebacker spots, but could also factor as a tight end at the next level. McCray needs to add upper-body strength to play in the middle at the next level, but should be able to play comfortably in the 235-pound range.
Allen Trieu: He's a very athletic 6'3 quarterback with the arm to make a lot of the necessary throws. He has to improve mechanics and take better care of the football, but those things are fixable. The things he does bring to the table, the ability to run with the ball, make plays with his feet when plays break down and a general knack for making plays are harder to teach. That's why I really like his upside and have him ranked in this spot.
Bill Greene: The best football player in Ohio that nobody has heard of. Billy Price gets a lot of run for defensive tackle, and deservedly so, but Munger is the same type of player. He gave Ohio State offensive tackle signee Kyle Dodson all he could handle last season. Munger continues to add BCS offers as college coaches see his film, and check him out in person.
Allen Trieu: I may disagree with Bill's statement on Munger, because this might be the best kid in Ohio no one's talking about. He's long, smooth, can run, and shows good ball skills and smarts. He makes plays in zone and in man coverage, and although he definitely needs to add weight, he's a solid tackler as well. Watch out for him this spring and summer, because he could really rise up the boards and pick up more offers.
S | Youngstown (Ohio) Cardinal Mooney | committed to Nebraska
Allen Trieu: McWilson can do it all. He has the speed and playmaking ability to be effective in coverage and he's willing to come up and support the run. Watch his film at recevier and as a return man and you can see what kind of an athlete the Cornhuskers are getting. Put on the game tape and you can see that he was the one consistently making big plays for his team last year.
Allen Trieu: One of the biggest questions our staff has had while going through these players is, why doesn't Roback have more offers? He had a great junior year, where he showed he could make all the throws and hurt opposing defenses with his feet. Then he went out and had a great day at the U.S. Army All-American Combine. He's on the thin side, but the weight will come. He has everything else.
Bill Greene: If Munger isn't the most underrated football player in Ohio, Darian Hicks is. College coaches are aware of him however, and he is in the process of putting together a great offer list. His speed sticks out, but he also is willing to hit people in run support. Hicks showed well in January at the Under Armour Junior Combine in Orlando, covering some of the top wide receivers from across America.
WR | Columbus (Ohio) Marion-Franklin | committed to Michigan
Dave Berk: Big frame wide receiver that opened eyes during Marion Franklin’s playoff run. While not a speed burner Dukes has enough speed to be a major problem for defensive backs with his combination of size and speed. Raw prospect with a bright future as he continues working on the small parts of his game.
Bill Greene: Led his Cardinal Mooney team to a state title, and was the leader of a great defense. There is no questioning his ability to come forward and hit ballcarriers between the tackles. Coaches are looking at his skill level at backing up into coverage and running sideline to sideline, and judging from his offer list, they must be sold.
Dave Berk: First saw Matuska two seasons ago and felt he had a chance to be one of Ohio’s top prospects. While not a big time receiving target at Columbus (Ohio) Bishop Hartley, he has the tools to be a solid receiver and solid blocker at the college level.
Bill Greene: A real wildcard at the wide receiver position in Ohio for 2013. He suffered from a few drops last year as a junior, but he was only a few notches below Gibson as one of the top wide receivers at the Under Armour Junior Combine. He caught every pass thrown his way in Orlando, some of them difficult catches, and also got open against some of the top cornerbacks in America.
Allen Trieu: Jones can do it all. He runs well and makes plays both dropping back into coverage and coming forward. He can go inside or outside, and he has played for a top program against top competition, so it's easy to see why he has accumulated the offers he has to date.
Allen Trieu: Peterson is a very talented kid who has started on varsity since his freshman season and could play guard, center or defensive tackle at the next level. We'd like to see him be more consistent and do some of the little things it takes to be great, but there is no doubting his physical ability.
Allen Trieu: Really good athlete who has done it for several years as a cover man and running back. His quick feet, aggressiveness and confidence allows him to make up for the fact that he's not the biggest corner around.
S | Warren (Ohio) Harding | committed to Michigan State
Allen Trieu: Very impressed by him on film. He has legitimate straight line speed and is a kid who will stick his nose in the action and won't shy away from contact. We're going to see him more in person over the spring and summer because it's tough going off of just a highlight tape, but he's a kid to keep an eye on as one that could rise up over the next few months.
Allen Trieu: Track guy and a solid all around athlete who makes a lot of plays offensively and as a return man, but projects as a cornerback at the next level. We'd like to see him more in some spring and summer camps, but we like his ability.
DE | Pickerington (Ohio) Central | committed to Michigan
Dave Berk: Raw physical tools make Charlton one of Ohio's top prospects. However, he must continue to work on the football side of things and not basketball. Once the Pickerington Central defensive ends puts all his efforts in the weight room and on the field expect big things out of the 6-foot-6, 235-pound prospect.
S | Toledo (Ohio) Central Catholic | committed to West Virginia
Allen Trieu: Thompson, an early Mountaineer commit, has good size and is able to play in the box almost like an extra linebacker. He's aggressive in run support and is a strong kid. He makes plays in coverage as well though, and we see him as a good fit in the West Virginia defense.
Allen Trieu: This kid has slid under the radar a little, but has two BCS offers and had good seasons the last two years. His game is built on speed and getting into the open field, but he's also a tough kid. There are some schools that may look at him as a defensive back and while he hasn't played there a ton, he has the tools to be effective there.
Allen Trieu: Could go inside or outside, but we think he'll end up growing into more of an inside guy because of his current build and growth potential. He had a great performance at the recent Elite Big Man Camp and added to his offer list afterwards. More performances like that one and he should rise from under the radar and up the rankings.
Allen Trieu: Good all around football player who affected games in all three phases last year. He's a slasher at running back with solid size and speed. However, that size/speed ratio makes him a great prospect in the secondary as well and he will earn a lot of looks there.
Dave Berk: Big frame linebacker or possible rush end out of Cincinnati (Ohio) Northwest High School. Jones has the frame to battle in the trenches and the burst to make plays in space. May not run a great forty but moves well laterally and shows great balance.
Allen Trieu: We saw him intially as a 240-lb defensive end, but he has added some weight and embraced the offensive side of the ball, which is where I think he ends up. He's a mauler who plays hard and finishes his blocks. He plays tackle, but we think he may slide into guard. Either way, he's the type of pure football player you can win with.
Dave Berk: There is nothing fancy about Wilson's running style as he loves to take the ball and head straight ahead. Shows quick feet and does a good job of getting his shoulders squared by the time he hits the hole. Good acceleration gives him the tools to score after breaking a tackle.
Allen Trieu: I can see him really excelling in a spread system come college. He is elusive in the open field and catches the ball well out of the backfield. I could see him motioning out into the slot at times. He also shows ability as a return man.
Allen Trieu: The kid is raw, but has really good tools. He's 6'9 with basketball player athleticism and he does have a little mean streak to him. Once he learns and fills out a little bit, he has a chance to be a really good one, but he has to be fully dedicated to football.
39 . Alex Gall
OG | Cincinnati (Ohio) Moeller |
Dave Berk: Moeller High School has produced some solid talent the past several years and Gall is one of the next in line. Big body offensive lineman who projects as a guard in college. Has all the physical tools and is well taught in techniques. Needs to be in better physical shape and needs to keep weight under 300-pounds.
Dave Berk: Not as well known as others in the class, Morgan is a talented tight end prospect with great size (6-foot-6 / 240-pounds) who has shown the ability to do the dirty work blocking up front and surprise defenses when he releases and gets wide open for a score. Needs to be a better route runner and some may look to add weight and make him a tackle down the road.
Bill Greene: A prospect that has everything from a skill set perspective to be a great cornerback. All Dawson needs is more experience on the field, but he has great speed, long arms, quick feet and flexible hips. In a year for impressive cornerbacks in Ohio, Dawson could overtake some of those that are currently higher-ranked by the end of the season.
Bill Greene: After seeing this big guy in person at the Raw Talent Sports Combine in Cleveland, it's apparent that he is one of the more talented offensive tackles in the state. He is a legit 6-foot-7, and has quick feet. He might not play the best competition, but as college coaches see Coverdale in person, the offer list should grow.
Allen Trieu: He was dominant on the camp circuit last year. He's technically sound, plays with a low center of gravity and is just a tough kid who gets it done. Probably a center or guard at the next level, and a good one at either spot.
45 . Keith Towbridge
TE | Toledo Central Catholic (Ohio) |
Allen Trieu: Big kid that can split out and motion into the backfield and be a lead blocker. Maybe not the fastest guy, but big, strong and sure handed.
46 . Solomon Warfield
S | Lakewood St. Edward (Ohio) |
Allen Trieu: Good sized defensive back that can run and cover. Probably more of a safety, but offers possibilities as a corner as well. Recently landed his first BCS offer and we believe more are on the way.
Bill Greene: Simply did not follow up on his impressive sophomore season last year as a junior. After seeing Kempt regain his form at both the Under Armour Junior Combine and the Semper Fi Junior combine, it appears he is back on form. Kempt has also added offers from Indiana and Cincinnati since those performances, so college coaches have noticed as well.