Bradley's Recruitment Still Open

Trotwood (Ohio) Madison safety Bam Bradley is trying to juggle recruiting with leading his team back to the state championship game this season. He gave an update on who he is favoring now and where he might visit soon.

Ohio State is still in the running for one of Ohio's No. 31 prospect, but it has some ground to make up if it wants to land Bam Bradley.

"It is still pretty much wide open, but I am starting to like Stanford and Pittsburgh a whole lot," the Trotwood-Madison safety told "Ohio State is still in there, I just spoke to (OSU head coach Luke) Fickell today and I may be taking an official there. Arizona is still in there, Vanderbilt, is still in there, Penn State is still in there. There are teams that are still in the conversion, but Penn State, Stanford and Pittsburgh are really standing out for me right now. I can say top three, but it is still close. I still have visits to take."

The 6-1, 195-pounder has visited the Nittany Lions and Panthers this year and intends to see the Cardinal on Nov. 12 for a highly anticipated Pac-12 showdown with Oregon.

He last visited Ohio State in late summer, at which point he received his scholarship offer from Fickell.

"Everything I was looking at is four or five hours away, so that gave me something closer to home for my mom's sake," Bradley said. "That was good going there and I plan on going back for a game."

He is not sure if a visit to Ohio State would be an official or not because those are more time-consuming, but he feels as if he can get a good feel for the team and the coaching staff even on unofficial trips to Columbus.

He already has a good impression of Fickell and sees Ohio State in a positive light despite the recent problems the program has endured with the NCAA.

"He is a nice guy, he's young, has a lot of energy," Bradley said of Fickell. "It helps sometimes when you have a coach that can show you more than just tell you, so I am sure that's a guy who can do that as far as being young and being still athletic.

"Even though they have stuff going on right now, it is still Ohio State, they're going to get players, and they're going to rebound regardless just because of who they are."

Bradley updated his recruiting status in the aftermath of Trotwood-Madison's 48-20 comeback win at Greater Western Ohio Conference foe Xenia on Oct. 7. The Rams outscored the underdog Buccaneers 28-0 in the second half to improve to 7-0 and maintained their spot atop the computer rankings in Division II, Region 8.

Bradley's junior year was marred by a knee injury, but TMHS head coach Maurice Douglass said he is having a tremendous comeback as a senior.

"He's our senior leader," Douglass said. "The guys listen to him, and they look up to him. Up until this year he hadn't spoken any, but now this year being his senior year he's doing a great job of leading by example. They see him working hard, and because he works hard like that, he spoke to them at halftime and said, ‘We can't do that. That's not Ram football. Let's go out there in the second half and play the way we're capable of playing.' We had the goose egg in the second half."

Bradley is embracing a leadership role this season as the Rams try to position themselves for a return trip to the Division II state championship game, where they lost to Maple Heights last season.

"We just have a lot of young guys that weren't really playing on our state run last year, so they don't really know how to prepare for every game," the senior said of his halftime message. "We had a great week of practice, we just came out flat in the first half. They don't get it yet, so we seniors have to make sure they understand they have to bring it every game. Nobody is going to lay down for us. We are 7-0 right now, but we can't get complacent because we are going to get everyone's best game."

"College coaches let me know they're looking for a leader to come in even as a freshman and be able to get the other freshmen with me, so even the coaches that are recruiting me want me to be a leader and to see the leadership capabilities in me."

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