Hayze: What are your thoughts on the 2019 DL in Ohio? Looks to be a stellar group that OSU can really pull from. Is there a pecking order at WR for the 2018 class yet? Any guys that you think could be close to in the bag? Think Michah Parsons is just playing the recruiting game or has legitimate interest in flipping to OSU? Can we still come back and steal Palaie Gaoteote from USC?
BG: I love the 2019 defensive ends in Ohio, especially Zach Harrison who is going to be a potential five-star national prospect. Then you have Cade Stover, Noah Potter and Steven Faucheux, who could all be four-star guys. Faucheux could slide inside and end up a tackle. I think the 2018 wide receiver group Ohio State is looking at is in flux right now. Guys like like Kamryn Babb and C.J. Moore are right there. I think Meechi Harris in-state could get a look. Not sure if any wideouts are close to committing. Micah Parsons is the ultimate game-player, but he has to sign with someone. With Gaoteote, I believe Ohio State had him with Luke Fickell as the linebacker coach. I think they have a shot to flip him, and I would expect him to visit at some point which opens the door.
cgorange: What are your predictions for Ohio high school football champs in each division? Who's the player of the year in the state of Ohio?
BG: So hard for me to answer predicting champions, because I only study individual kids not teams. I do like Pickerington Central a lot. Cleveland St. Ignatius should be strong. Akron Hoban lost a lot, but they're going to be good again. Like Trotwood-Madison as well. The player of the year could be 50 different guys. It usually goes to a skill kid putting up sick numbers for a great team, and I couldn't begin to predict who that might be at this time.
onassis: Bill, name 5 can't miss recruits that missed. Maybe not guys like Mike Burden, who never were eligible, but guys who looked like stars when they were signed, but just couldn't play. Also 5 big surprises, guys who made you scratch your head when they signed and turned out to be ballers.
BG: I bought the farm on Storm Klein hook, line and sinker, just like Fickell and Tressel did. Had he stayed in great shape and kept his weight down, he could have been really good. I also was all in on Connor Smith, who was a monster run blocker in high school. I thought he might start as a freshman for OSU, and he was never all that good. Louis Irizarry remains the most talented tight end prospect I've ever seen in Ohio, and off field junk killed his chances. He should be finishing a Hall of Fame NFL career right now. Wide receiver James Louis was signed out of Florida with a lot of hype, but he couldn't play dead in a cowboy movie. Nate Oliver was a four-star safety coming out of high school, but he was the classic tweener between safety and linebacker and wasn't very good. Justin Zwick remains the poster boy for your question, and he was one of my first big arguments with fans on a message board. I never saw the flash others saw.
BG: There are head scratchers all the time, and that's the beauty of trying to predict what 17-year old kids will be like as 20-year old men. Some guys that I thought could not play a lick, but who could would be Tyler Everett coming out of Canton McKinley. And I liked Tyler a lot and knew him well, but never thought he was OSU material. I was wrong. I did not like Jonathan Hankins coming out of high school as an overweight kid, and that was a nice call. I would have never taken Daryl Baldwin, and I still don't think he could have played defensive end, but Ed Warinner worked his magic and turned him into a serviceable O-lineman. I was not all that high on Pat Elflein, and had him lumped in with a bunch of other "three-star heaven" kids that could not play. I was dead wrong there. I wasn't sure a kid from my high school could make the switch from tight end to tackle and ever play much for Ohio State, but I was wrong as I could be on Kirk Barton who was a heck of a player.
mrbigbux: You have stated that Weber would be a much better back than last year if he dropped 10-15 lbs. Has this happened? Does the staff agree with this.
BG: He is still listed at 214-pounds, but I thought he looked more like 225 last year. I think the power he would sacrifice would be offset by being able to run away from defenders. And give him more shake and some explosiveness. Having 23 catches for 91 yards should be the stats of Billy Price, not a feature back.
bobosu: Urban mentioned that OSU just cant miss on O-linemen. Your thoughts on O-linemen that OSU has best to get?? Also how many will OSU take this year ?
BG: I think they will take five in this class, with three being tackles. Since Studrawa took over the O-line, recruiting has gotten much better. They are not taking the projects that Warinner took that were highly questionable takes. Guys like Jurkovic, Bowen, Feder and Schmidt should NOT be takers for Ohio State. But they wouldn't take guys like Jacoby Boren or Pat Elflein today either. Warinner made projects into prospects. Can Stud take high school studs and make them college studs? We don't know that yet.
Buckoholic11: Who do you think will be the starting 5 in the secondary (including the nickel)?
BG: I like Ward and Sheffield on the corners, with Webb and Erick Smith/Jordan Fuller at safety. For the nickel, I have Damon Arnette, but being challenged by Okudah and/or Shaun Wade. I have no worries about them replacing three first round picks because of the talent on hand, and Greg Schiano.
cjdjbucknuts: You are around Canton I think, so I was wondering if you knew what Steve Miller and Se'Von Pittman were doing now?
BG: Se'Von just completed his career at Akron, where he played out of position at tackle and was hurt as a senior at defensive end. He is hoping to be in someone's camp this summer, although I do not see him getting drafted. Steve Miller was cut by the Carolina Panthers a few years ago, and he is playing in the Canadian League, I believe.
notobigkat: Austin Mack and Bin Victor Predictions for next year Predictions for ohio state future NFL prediction
BG: Didn't really like what I saw out of either in the spring game, but that wasn't a good one to judge people in. Believe both can be on the field next year, but I think Victor is ahead of Mack right now. They can both play at the Ohio State level in my opinion, and I think both can have good careers in Kevin Wilson's offense. I think both have the frame and athletic ability to play in the NFL some day. I think both guys can play.
buckeyebones: Bill give us a sketch of the most important qualities you want in an ideal recruit for each offensive position. Who will be the other 3 teams in the playoffs? Wray plays RT in HS yet dogma says you put your stud tackle at LT to protect the QB's blind side. Any insight in this case?
BG: For QB's, I want a guy that gets rid of the ball on time, makes quick decisions and is highly accurate. You have to process things at warp speed, which separates the good from the great, not arm strength or size. My RB's need vision and have to be able to make the first guy miss because we can't block them all. For the WR's, you have to be able to cut on a dime, which would mean more than speed to me. I need good-to-great hands, because I can't deal with stone hands at all. On the outside, I want bigger, stronger guys. At the slot, I want speed and explosiveness. My tight ends need to be able to get down the seam and catch the football, but also be able to hold up as blockers in the run game. If I have to sacrifice in one area of tight ends, I'll take the supreme pass catcher. For O-linemen, they have to be smart guys first off and this might surprise people. At New England, they will not take or keep a slow-thinking lineman. The decisions that can kill Tom Brady have to be made correctly and quickly. Then I want long arms and quick feet, especially at tackle because Von Miller and Jadeveon Clowney are coming off the ball in a blur. For the inside guys, smarts is also number-one. But these guys have to be tough as heck, be strong as bulls and be able to be athletic enough to get out and run.
BG: The defensive tackles have to have the chin to hold up inside, and be pure bad-azz guys with size. The defensive ends have to be like NBA forwards, quick as cats with strength and power. The linebackers have to be good enough to cover backs and tight ends, but have the strength to hold up in the run game. With safety and corner not all that much different in the modern game, you want the guys that can flip their hips and change direction quickly in coverage. They don't have to be Ronnie Lott, but they need to be tough enough to make tackles in the back end of the defense.
BG: Right now, I have Ohio State In. I like Georgia (I know, I know, LOL) coming out of the SEC. Love Florida State this year. And I think USC under Sam Darnold will be really good. I don't know Wray's team, but maybe they like to run right most of the time and that's why they have him there. His film shows a heck of a player.