But deep down inside, Oliver knew he wanted to become a Buckeye and he knew that he wanted to be a leader of his class and help to bring in other players into the class, so he called Jim Tressel and Tim Beckman later in the day and made it official.
"I'm very happy and I wanted to be the first person to commit to Ohio State for the class of 2007," Oliver said. "Now I hope to lead some of the other top juniors into doing the same thing."
It couldn't have been very long after Tressel ended his press conference where he talked about the 2006 recruiting class that he heard the good news from Oliver.
"The coaches were really happy and they congratulated me," he said as he described the reaction from the coaching staff at Ohio State. "But they told me to keep working hard, have a big senior season and help lead my team to a state championship next year."
Oliver had been debating with himself for the past week or so about issuing a verbal commitment on signing day or not, but after watching some of the senior members at St. Edward sign their respective letters today, he just thought it was the right thing to do now.
"There were a couple factors and that was one of them," said Oliver who admitted to getting caught up in the atmosphere of the day. "With Thaddeus Gibson and Ray Small and Rob Rose going down there and becoming Buckeyes, I thought that I would rather play with those guys than against them. And plus the family atmosphere at Ohio State is everything that I'm looking for. It's also a big relief that I don't have to worry about it any longer and I can just concentrate on my senior year now."
Eddie George is one of Oliver's all-time favorite players and Oliver's father taught him a little bit about Jack Tatum who roamed the OSU secondary decades ago.
"I love Ohio State and it was incredible just to get an offer from them," he said. "So this is like a dream come true and I really can't wait to become a Buckeye."
But first, of course, Oliver will have to focus on his senior season where he will be playing with other talented classmates next year at St. Edward like Kyle Hubbard, Frank Edmonds and Diauntae Morrow.
Kyle Hubbard, Diauntae Morrow, Frank Edmonds and Nate Oliver (l to r).
"I'm really excited about the future," said Oliver who was in the car on his way to Cleveland Cavaliers game on Wednesday night. "I'm sitting next to Kyle Hubbard right now and he's tired of hearing me talk about it already. I'm hoping some of it will rub off on him now. He's been talking a lot of that Michigan stuff but I think he'll make the right decision in the end."
Hubbard, another coveted recruit who plays wide receiver for St. Edward, is a possible candidate to play tight end at the college level. And with today's official announcement, Oliver officially has one year now to help convince Hubbard and some of the other top juniors in Ohio to indeed make that same "right decision" that he made.
We have links to video from two of St. Ed's playoff games last November (Oliver wears No. 13 for St. Ed):