Bucknuts' Recruiting Report Card
This report is Mr. Bucknuts' unique attempt to coordinate and grade the recruiting process on a dynamic basis between now and the end of recruiting season for the Class of 2004. As players commit - or emerge on the scene - the report will change to reflect that. Your comments are welcome! The report is the opinion of Mr. Bucknuts and not OSU. Send all broadsides to MrBucknuts@yahoo.com
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OCTOBER RECRUITING REVIEW
While the rest of us were safely slumbering Monday evening, Bucknuts' guru of Ohio recruiting, Duane Long, uncovered the fact that Dionte' Johnson committed to Ohio State. Although not confirmed until a day later (yes, we do exist in a parallel universe…), Dionte' has committed to Coach Spencer and will be heading a few miles away to play at The Stadium. Dionte' is a fullback and a linebacker and a good student and a son of Pepper Johnson, so what could possibly go wrong?
If our goal was to pick up one Top 100 national recruit every month, well…Marcus up as one-for-September. As in Marcus Freeman, who fulfilled everyone's prophecy by committing to the Buckeyes two weeks ago. Everyone? Rumors had it that he was an early lean and, then, that he was verbaling to Notre Dame. Who would listen to such trash? All you had to do was follow the rantings of ol' Mr. Bucknuts and you could have saved yourself a lot of angst.
Hey – the linebacker recruiting looks pretty good all of a sudden and we only have one commitment! How so? Well, we also have – hiding in plain site – the eligibility next year of both Anthony Schlegel and John Kerr. Schlegel was captain of Air Force as a sophomore and Kerr was the top freshman linebacker in the Big Ten last year at Indiana. Both have looked special on the OSU scout team. When you consider that Carpenter/Hawk/D'Andrea will all just be juniors next year, the cards are certainly stacked in our favor. So if a Willie Williams or a James Bryant wants to come aboard – fine. But we will also be fine for a season or two without them.
But back to the Mr. Bucknuts Recruit of the Month Theory…Here we go:
September: Marcus Freeman
October: Fred Davis
November: Jeff Byers
December: Derrick Harvey
January: Ted Ginn
February: Xavier Lee
A hell of a class, that. And one heck of a theory. If you want, you can substitute Mike Massey, Brett Gallimore or Demario Pressley for Byers, Harvey and Lee. A little lower, perhaps, on the fantasy scale but still a class I wouldn't kick out of bed. Another tip from the man-who-hates-to-be-wrong: marcus up as landing Ted Ginn and Fred Davis. Don't listen to the usual chorus of skeptics and cynics…
All right, let's move from theory to reality and see how we are faring:
Kyle Williams: Gave Ohio State a cursory look before committing to Iowa last week (we are OK – see previous linebacker discussion…)
Charlie Jones: Says he's coming to visit December 5 but says he's likely to commit to Miami.
Rhyan Anderson: Long shot said to be setting up his official visits with Ohio State, Miami, Oklahoma, Southern Cal and Nebraska.
Leon Hart: Super O-lineman still has Buckeyes in favorites along with South Carolina, Clemson, Florida, Virginia, Auburn, Georgia and Tennessee. You do the math and calculate the odds.
Mike Massey: Dropped Pitt (that's the good news) and added Michigan (that's the bad news) who finally offered. The fact that he didn't verbal right after they offered is a good sign but the longer he waits (getting the season over with…) is not.
SirDarean Adams: Gave Duane Long reason for optimism in a recent interview. Plus, he would make a great bookend for our All-Name team with Sirjo Seph Welch.
Devon Lyons: Visited Notre Dame and is said to be setting up a visit to Michigan State. Ohio State still in the running along with Pitt and Penn State.
Brandon Barrett: Told reporters that he would definitely visit Ohio State, West Virginia and Georgia Tech.
Carlos Feliciano: Implies that Ohio State is his leader. Also lists Virginia, Boston College, Pitt, Iowa and Maryland.
Kyle Mitchum: Ohio State, Iowa and Miami are his "definite" visits. Could be our best chance for an out-of-state offensive line star.
Terrail Lambert: Florida State is the heavy favorite but still lists Ohio State (along with USC, Oklahoma and Notre Dame) in his top five.
Darius Walker: Set up visits with Stanford, Ohio State and Notre Dame… still also lists Arkansas and Florida.
Brett Gallimore: Big official visit last week to Purdue (already been to Columbus) and is also looking at Iowa and Florida State.
Vernon Gholston: Told one reporter that the Michigan-Notre Dame game was the first college game he had ever attended. Still lists OSU, along with Michigan and Michigan State.
NAMES ADDED TO THE LIST
Derrick Harvey: Showing OSU some love and he is the best defensive end prospect in the country.
Demario Pressley: Same as above, just substitute "defensive tackle" for "defensive end".
SirDarean Adams: He's a wide receiver, running back and defensive back (i.e. "Athlete") who is high on many schools' charts.
Dajuan Morgan: Says Ohio State is one of his three "for sure" visits along with North Carolina State and heavy favorite Florida.
Dwayne Jones: OK, I was pressured into putting him on. There's an outside chance. And since we are Big Running Back poor right now, maybe this will be good karma.
Aaron Jones: Super D-lineman from Florida who says he was offered and listed OSU amongst his top three. Has already visited.
Brandon Siler: Florida linebacker who says OSU should be one of his five "visit schools".
Justin Kucek: Our Gary Housteau has been following his development and predicts he will be the Buckeye's next punter.
Pat Sims: Solid D-line prospect that has been on and off the list. It just made me feel bad not to have a Dillard (FL) player and they owe us one after the debacle with Stanley McClover last year.
OFF THE LIST
Kyle Williams: As noted, he committed to Iowa.
Jamell Benjamin: With Dionte Johnson in as a fullback, Jamell falls into the "not needed" category.
Tony Johnson: See above…
Chauncey Incarnato: He has committed to the Domers but would likely re-consider if Ohio State actually offered.
Josh Hunt: No love being shown here but there were some brief flirtations.
Nii Adjei Oninko: Ditto.
Craig McGovern: Committed to Maryland.
Will Johnson: Committed to Michigan.
Early Doucet: Phenomenal athlete that is not including OSU in his 5 visits.
Courtney Abbott, Xavier Carter and Drew Miller: Our intelligence is telling us "Ain't gonna happen…".
Michael Bell (Michigan State), Jeff Browning (UC) and Tyjuan Jones Illinois): Have committed elsewhere.
As hard as it is to believe, we are bearing down toward the stretch run for recruiting. We already have more than half the commitments we will take this year, with another 11-12 to go. Two of those 11-12 hopefully will come in the form of Ted Ginn and Fred Davis, two Ohio kids that are rated in the Top 50 in the country on everyone's lists (at least "everyone" that knows what they are talking about…). That means that there is less than four months to pick up 9-10 kids.
That means that we are right on pace, according to me, Mr. Bucknuts.
It also means that the pace will pick up. Not only does more of the Big Time and serious kids come visit the final home games (not to mention that their high school seasons finally end), but there are Big-Time-and-Serious visits in December and January coming up. Once the "lock" kids make their obligatory five visits (read again: Ginn and Davis), there is no reason to keep from committing.
So, I will see you in November with the latest updates on OSU recruiting!
LATEST RECRUITING REPORT CARD
Red Player:He has already committed
Gray Player:Gray shirt that will be part of the 2004 class
Blue Player:I absolutely want this kid!
Green Player:Great potential; I might want him
Black player: Good potential