2015 Recruiting: Defensive Update

The Buckeyes are beginning to gear their recruiting efforts more toward the 2015 class. They are in on several of the nation's best on the defensive side of the ball.

DEFENSIVE LINE (3-4)
Top Offered Targets: Tim Settle, Jashon Cornell, Terry Beckner, CeCe Jefferson, Christian Wilkins, Darius Fullwood, Josh Sweat, and Shy Tuttle
Other Offered Targets: Joshua Alabi, D'Andre Walker, Jacob Daniel, Darian Roseboro, James Lockhart, Kyle Phillips, Scott Patchan, Clelin Ferrell, and Darrion Daniels
Non-offered Targets: Brandon Tiassum

With a new defensive line coach at the helm, the focus could shift. Johnson may look for something different than what Vrabel did and has relationships established with different prospects. The best chances amongst the top targets lie with Settle, Cornell, Beckner, Wilkins, Fullwood, and Sweat.

Settle, Wilkins, and Fullwood have already visited. Settle grew up liking the Buckeyes and loves Johnson. Fullwood also admires Johnson greatly and he'll visit Ohio State again soon. That may be a serious visit to watch. Wilkins visited the Buckeye campus during a trip to see family nearby Ohio State. Cornell, Beckner, and Sweat could very well make a visit to Columbus in the Spring.

LINEBACKER (3)
Top Offered Targets: Jeffery Holland, Malik Jefferson, Ricky DeBerry, Justin Hilliard, Jerome Baker, and Sh'mar Kilby-Lane
Other Offered Targets: Eli Brown, Jahvoni Simmons, Anthony Wheeler, Adonis Thomas, Dominic Sheppard, and Tevon Coney
Non-offered Targets: Anthony McKee and Nick Conner

Linebacker is a position Ohio State is having no problems with in the 2015 class. Holland, DeBerry, Hilliard, Baker, and Kilby-Lane have all shown high interest in Ohio State. DeBerry, Baker, and Kilby-Lane are the more likely possibilities at this point, with Baker and Kilby-Lane being leans. All five are planning visits to Ohio State in the Spring.

I still think Conner has a great shot at getting offered and would be in if it comes to fruition.

CORNERBACK (2)
Top Offered Targets: Minkah Fitzpatrick, Iman Marshall, Shaun Crawford, Kevin Toliver, and Kendall Sheffield
Other Offered Targets: Garrett Taylor, Jordan Whitehead, Maurice Smitherman, Marcus Lewis, and Mark Fields
Non-offered Targets: David Dowell

Fitzpatrick would be the target Ohio State is in the best shape with amongst the group at the top. I still think Crawford could be a possibility but a lot will depend on Michigan's season which will have an impact on the job security of their current coaches. Toliver is an LSU commit but has a bit of interest in the Buckeyes but it's not serious at this current time.

Sheffield and Marshall would be huge long shots.

SAFETY (1-2)
Top Offered Targets: Kendrell McFadden, Tavarus McFadden, and Shawn Burgess-Becker
Other Offered Targets: Rashad Roundtree, Kai Locksley, and Ben Edwards

The Buckeyes should get visits out of Kendrell McFadden and Tavarus McFadden. Kendrell loves Coombs and views him as one of his favorite coaches. Tavarus is a teammate of Torrance Gibson. The chances with Burgess-Becker are highly unlikely.

Ohio State is fine at safety and doesn't need to add much for the 2015 class. Jamel Dean is already in the fold and I think he more than likely ends up at safety. They won't turn away a five-star type if he wants in though.

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