I attended the Louisville-GlenOak passing scrimmage Thursday night, and came away impressed with some individual players. Duane Long originally entitled his magazine Ohio's Future Stars, and I saw one tonight in Brian Hartline. Ohio State has surely landed a gem in Hartline. Precision route running, great leaping ability, soft hands, and blazing speed are all accurate descriptions of one of the top wideouts in the country. Brian also played spectacularly at cornerback, and I wouldn't rule defense out of his college career. With brother Mike throwing the football in GlenOak's wide open attack, I expect Brian to put up big numbers for the Golden Eagles.
Last season, Mike Hartline was the most improved player in Stark County, from week one through week 10. He appears to be even better this year. Watching Mike throw every pass a QB needs to make, it was easy to see why the younger Hartline impressed everyone at OSU's camp a few weeks ago. Heading into his junior season, Mike already has a scholarship offer from Kent State, and is certain to add to that list as the year progresses. Mike is receiving excellent coaching from head coach Jack Rose, so his improvement will continue, making him a national recruit. Coach Rose has stated that Mike will be the most heavily recruited player he has coached at GlenOak, and he's coached some great ones, including Buckeye star Dustin Fox.
Another Golden Eagle standout is Brandon Long. Brandon is 6' 3" 230 pounds, and recently ran a 4.55 forty at OSU's camp. Brandon is being recruited primarily as a LB, but is also a standout TE. He has worked extremely hard in the weight room, and he certainly passes the college "look test." Brandon has several scholarship offers and said the his leader is Cincinnati, coached by ex-Buckeye assistant Mark Dantonio. Long is poised to have a huge senior season, so more college offers could be forthcoming. Brandon might have as much physical talent as any player in Ohio, and with another year of maturity, he is a player fans need to take note of.
I spoke with Ryan Palmer, currently ranked as one of the top junior offensive linemen in Ohio High, and he also appears on the verge of stardom. Ryan is 6' 6" 295 pounds, and also impressed coaches at the OSU camp. A basketball player, Ryan needs to continue to build strength, while improving his mobility, to become one of Ohio's top juniors. His potential is unlimited, and he's been able to see what it takes to succeed by observing the work ethic of seniors Hartline and Long.
I went to the scrimmage to observe the GlenOak players, but I have to mention junior Drew Kuhn, of Louisville. I've often told Duane Long that I rarely ask for a player's number when I go to watch them play because big-time athletes stand out in a crowd. Kuhn appears to be that type of player. He acquitted himself well defensively, covering Hartline man to man, but he also was impressive offensively. Kuhn, who is 5' 10" 175 pounds and runs a sub 4.6 forty, made two spectacular TD catches and also appeared briefly at QB for Paul Farrah's Leopards. Farrah, one of the top coaches in Stark County, always has the Leopards in the playoff hunt, and this year should be no exception. This year's team will be exciting to watch, and it will be interesting to see if the Leps can get into the playoffs, yet again.