Sprinkle Goes In-Depth on Buckeye Pledge

10 weeks ago, Tracy Sprinkle was excited about his first offer – from Syracuse. Fast-forward to Tuesday, and he committed to the school he grew up rooting for, which turned out to be his 14th overall offer. He discussed his pledge to Ohio State hours after pulling the trigger.

What a difference a day makes. On Monday, Tracy Sprinkle was home from school with a stomach virus. 24 hours later he was committing to his dream school while relieving stress amidst he and his family's celebration.

The three-star Elyria (OH) standout defensive end made the call to Ohio State on Tuesday – committing 10 days after receiving the Buckeye offer.

"When I was there, I don't know why, but I just didn't want to commit," Sprinkle admitted despite wanting to several times. "I wanted to weigh my options out, and each passing day I have just been thinking about it. Some days I'll wake up and want to do it and the next day I'll be like ‘I don't know.'

"I gave it a lot of prayer and talked to my family, friends, coaches and mentors and they said the same thing that I've been feeling so my mindset was that it was the best fit and I should do this – so I did it."

It happened on Tuesday afternoon, as he finally got in touch with the Elyria staff after the missed school day because of the sickness.

"I told my coach that I wanted to do it because we talked about it," said the 6-foot-4, 250-pound Sprinkle. "I wanted to get it over with, so I called (running backs) Coach Stan Drayton and I told him, he was actually screaming on the phone, he was really excited.

"He was telling me to stay focused and then he gave the phone to Coach Urban Meyer. He was really excited and he told me that I have a big target on my chest and I'm going to have to live with being a Buckeye without even being there yet so I'm going to have to stay focused…"

So what happened over the last 10 days in addition to waiting for the right time to pull the trigger?

"The school that was pulling me back was Michigan State," he admitted. "When I went on the visit, I liked it a lot. I heard a lot of great things…and Arkansas also, but a couple of altercations happened so it was just the right thing to do (to commit to OSU)."

The days of uncertainty and decision-making are immediately cut-down for Sprinkle, who has been a bit overwhelmed by the recruiting process and his rapid rise to being considered one of Ohio's top prospects.

"Right now it's just living in in the moment," he said. "Now as I think about it, it's really crunch time. I got a lot of stress off my shoulders. I could go to lifting and just think about that. I don't have to talk to coaches and think about visits and stuff like that.

"I think it's official that I will be a Buckeye…my recruitment is over."

The relief and ensuing celebration was a far cry from the day before, but it made the moment that much more special for Sprinkle and his family.

"I was lying all day in bed, I could barely eat," he said. "Yesterday was just awful, my coach was telling me Pitt was in the school to talk to me but I couldn't come. Yesterday, there was open options and pressure – with recruiting picking up heavy.

"Then today, I think it was put up by God. I woke up and said ‘I'm going to be a Buckeye.'"

The athletic defensive end is considered more of a pass-rushing specialist at Elyria, and that's where he may fit in at the next level.

"I talked to Coach (Mike) Vrabel, and he wants me to play more of a rush end," said Sprinkle. "3-technique and rush end, since he's bringing in one more recruit for the D-end spot so he wants me to be the more rushing type of guy.

"I think the defensive scheme really fits me because at the practice I saw how intense it was all day. The defense was having fun all day and that's the type of game I like to play. "

Sprinkle wants to add weight without losing speed and athleticism, something he credits to basketball – though it's uncertain whether or not he will play on the Elyria hoops squad in 2012-13.

"I was just talking with my basketball coach about that today," he said. "In my mind, I was thinking about graduating early and playing spring ball – but it donned on me that I wouldn't be able to play basketball.

"It helped me a lot, but spring ball (in Columbus) would help me more…in the end my future is in football but I really don't know yet."

As if it could be any better for Sprinkle and his die-hard Buckeye family on Tuesday…

"Tomorrow is my birthday, too," he said while laughing.

______________________________________________________________


Scout Football Top Stories

\r\n","mobileBody":"

What a difference a day makes. On Monday, Tracy Sprinkle was home from school with a stomach virus. 24 hours later he was committing to his dream school while relieving stress amidst he and his family's celebration.

The three-star Elyria (OH) standout defensive end made the call to Ohio State on Tuesday – committing 10 days after receiving the Buckeye offer.

\"When I was there, I don't know why, but I just didn't want to commit,\" Sprinkle admitted despite wanting to several times. \"I wanted to weigh my options out, and each passing day I have just been thinking about it. Some days I'll wake up and want to do it and the next day I'll be like ‘I don't know.'

\"I gave it a lot of prayer and talked to my family, friends, coaches and mentors and they said the same thing that I've been feeling so my mindset was that it was the best fit and I should do this – so I did it.\"

It happened on Tuesday afternoon, as he finally got in touch with the Elyria staff after the missed school day because of the sickness.

\"I told my coach that I wanted to do it because we talked about it,\" said the 6-foot-4, 250-pound Sprinkle. \"I wanted to get it over with, so I called (running backs) Coach Stan Drayton and I told him, he was actually screaming on the phone, he was really excited.

\"He was telling me to stay focused and then he gave the phone to Coach Urban Meyer. He was really excited and he told me that I have a big target on my chest and I'm going to have to live with being a Buckeye without even being there yet so I'm going to have to stay focused…\"

So what happened over the last 10 days in addition to waiting for the right time to pull the trigger?

\"The school that was pulling me back was Michigan State,\" he admitted. \"When I went on the visit, I liked it a lot. I heard a lot of great things…and Arkansas also, but a couple of altercations happened so it was just the right thing to do (to commit to OSU).\"

The days of uncertainty and decision-making are immediately cut-down for Sprinkle, who has been a bit overwhelmed by the recruiting process and his rapid rise to being considered one of Ohio's top prospects.

\"Right now it's just living in in the moment,\" he said. \"Now as I think about it, it's really crunch time. I got a lot of stress off my shoulders. I could go to lifting and just think about that. I don't have to talk to coaches and think about visits and stuff like that.

\"I think it's official that I will be a Buckeye…my recruitment is over.\"

The relief and ensuing celebration was a far cry from the day before, but it made the moment that much more special for Sprinkle and his family.

\"I was lying all day in bed, I could barely eat,\" he said. \"Yesterday was just awful, my coach was telling me Pitt was in the school to talk to me but I couldn't come. Yesterday, there was open options and pressure – with recruiting picking up heavy.

\"Then today, I think it was put up by God. I woke up and said ‘I'm going to be a Buckeye.'\"

The athletic defensive end is considered more of a pass-rushing specialist at Elyria, and that's where he may fit in at the next level.

\"I talked to Coach (Mike) Vrabel, and he wants me to play more of a rush end,\" said Sprinkle. \"3-technique and rush end, since he's bringing in one more recruit for the D-end spot so he wants me to be the more rushing type of guy.

\"I think the defensive scheme really fits me because at the practice I saw how intense it was all day. The defense was having fun all day and that's the type of game I like to play. \"

Sprinkle wants to add weight without losing speed and athleticism, something he credits to basketball – though it's uncertain whether or not he will play on the Elyria hoops squad in 2012-13.

\"I was just talking with my basketball coach about that today,\" he said. \"In my mind, I was thinking about graduating early and playing spring ball – but it donned on me that I wouldn't be able to play basketball.

\"It helped me a lot, but spring ball (in Columbus) would help me more…in the end my future is in football but I really don't know yet.\"

As if it could be any better for Sprinkle and his die-hard Buckeye family on Tuesday…

\"Tomorrow is my birthday, too,\" he said while laughing.

______________________________________________________________

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