5. Jacob Stoneburner – Dublin Coffman – WR
Bob Lichtenfels: One word can describe Jake Stoneburner and it is "Freak". No kid with his size should neither run nor catch a ball the way he does. Most of us have all argued about whether he is tight end or a wide receiver and I think we are all right, because he can do a little bit of everything. Another truly great young man joining the Buckeyes.
Greg Powers: Jacob Stoneburner arrived in a big way at the U.S. Army All-American Combine that was held in San Anonio earlier this year. He proved that he was not only a big-framed wide receiver, but he was big-framed guy with elite speed. Shortly after that offers began to roll in at an alarming pace. Stoneburner has the speed and route running abilities to be a great receiver, but also has the frame to possibly make the move to a flex tight end position. Either way he will be a dangerous weapon and a mismatch for the defenders. He is too big, strong, and fast for most defensive backs, and too fast for linebackers to cover.
Bill Greene: My favorite reference to Jake is when I was watching film this spring with a D-I staff, when Jake's film came up one of the coaches said "Here's that big, tall blankety-blank that nobody can cover." Language aside, it was a very accurate statement. I know some see him as a TE at the next level, but I see him as a wide receiver and just wait to see the match-up problems he creates. Great size and I saw him run a 4.5 forty with a slight leg injury. Stony will be a great addition to the Ohio State passing game. When the ball is in the air, it belongs to him.
Dave Berk: Not only is Jacob a great football prospect but also a great person. With great physical size you're quick to talk tight end but then you watch him perform and see he's got speed, real speed, and you start asking yourself about him really playing wide receiver at the next level. No matter where he lines up he's going to cause match-up problems and be a major threat for the Buckeyes. This goes to show how special of a class OSU is getting when you have a player like Stoneburner and he's number five with three more future Buckeyes in front of him.
4. Devier Posey – La Salle – WR
Bob: We saw him last fall and he was impressive, then we saw him this year and we realized he was elite. There is not one thing that he does not do well. Posey is a better person then he is a player, you talk about a kid who came from hardship and worked his way up from the bottom thanks in large part to his mom (Julie) who is a pretty special lady.
Greg: I knew Posey was going to be a player from the first minute I laid eye one him last fall. During the weekend of the Herbstreit Classic we were sent out to do some coverage on the top player in Ohio, Ben Martin, but it was Posey who stole the show. He did it all. He caught passes, threw passes, and returned punts. He looked great doing them all. He is very shifty and is as smooth as butter in and out of his breaks. He has great body control, and is even still a little raw at the receiver position. In addition to all of his other intangibles he is very fast, making the state finals in the 200 meters.
Bill: It took all of watching him run 2 or 3 pass patterns at our camp in Cincinnati to see the enormous potential of this athlete. He could end up being the most successful player from this class. Reminds me of former Steeler great John Stallworth. Like Stallworth, Posey is like fine Kentucky Bourbon: smooth as silk but with a powerful finishing kick. He has the ability to come in and out of his cuts at top speed, and that's a tremendous quality in a WR. He doesn't just have a chance to be a star. He WILL be a star at Ohio State. Take it to the bank.
Dave: I've been watching the Posey family for the past few years and I'm not surprised Devier is where he's at. Devier Posey is a special talent on and off the field and has all the tools needed to have success at the college level. Is there work still needed? Yes, and he fully understands he's still a work in progress. Smooth is the best way to describe what it's like watching Posey when he plays. The fluid motion of his body and the way he catches the ball is always smooth. Great use of his hands by catching the ball away from his body allows him to make some hard catches. Needs to continue to work on his routes and is only going to get better.
3. Devoe Torrence – Massillon Washington – RB
Bob: I was one of the many who was not sold on Torrence being a running back. Torrence showed up at our Pittsburgh combine and he quickly changed my mind. I watched him make two very good linebackers Shayne Hale and Mike Yancich look foolish trying to cover him.
Greg: To me Devoe Torrence is the top dual threat player in the state. He is just as good if not better at linebacker then he is at running back. On defense he is aggressive and shoots the gap with reckless abandon. On offense he is a powerful runner that I think Ohio State fans will love to watch play. A prototypical Big 10 back. It wil be very interesting to see him playing in a smash mouth offense at Massillon. I think that their bruising style will fit his game to perfectly. A good year could cement him as Ohio's Mr. Football.
Bill: I try to be objective when evaluating the Torrence brothers but it isn't always easy. I've known them since they were junior high athletes and have had the pleasure of watching them mature. DeVoe will be a great RB at Ohio State because he will be a finished product when he gets there. He was a blocking back as a sophomore, and a great one. He played WR as a junior, and made All-Ohio. This year he will get 20 carries per game at TB and will put up HUGE numbers at Massillon, both in yardage gained and tackles made. DeVoe is the early favorite to win Mr. Football in Ohio in 2007. Legitimate 4.5 speed and a broad jump of 10' 3" indicates the amazing combination of speed and explosion.
Dave: In most years Devoe Torrence would be the number one guy in Ohio. With the body to play on both sides of the ball and have success, fans are going to be cheated. We're talking about a stud linebacker with the ability to play at the next level. But watch him run and move on the offensive side of the ball and you see he's got just as much going for him as a running back. Fluid movement with great feet, hands and hips allow Torrence to make defenders look silly. His performance at the Scout.com Pittsburgh combine in tennis shoes showed Torrence will be ready to battle any place any time.
2. Kyle Rudolph – Elder – TE
Bob: Could very easily be the best player in the state. Rudolph has a great frame and I could easily see him weighing 250-260 pounds and playing on Sunday's someday. Needs to fill out, but he will block with the best of them and use every bit of his 235 pounds. Notre Dame is getting a great one.
Greg: It is definitely a tough choice picking between Rudolph and Torrence for the second spot in these rankings. Many fans will argue for Torrence, but Rudolph is a freak at the tight end position. He is long and very athletic. In my opinion he has separated himself as the top tight end in the country. He does not have the ideal bulk of a natural tight end, but has the frame to get there. Notre Dame has had a knack for making players like Rudolph in to NFL type of players, and it will be interesting to see what kind of numbers Rudolph will put up in Charlie Weis's offensive schemes.
Bill: Moore's film is as impressive as any tight end in Ohio since Irizzary. He should be able to play at 250 pounds and still be able to stretch the field vertically. Hard to understand the lack of interest from Ohio State and I really think this guy will blossom into something special at Michigan. He reminds me of an SEC-type tight end, the kind that get drafted by the NFL every year. Aside from the great speed, he has the ability to go and get the football in a crowd and possesses great leaping ability. Rudolph is as close to a lock for being a sure-fire NFL player as any prospect in Ohio. As the song says, "Just One Look is All it Took." Kyle has everything you look for in a TE. Everything. A great basketball player too, so you know the athleticism is there. He makes not only tough catches. He makes every catch. He should have a stellar career in Charlie Weis' offense. An excellent blocker too and he seems to enjoy hitting people too. In a year of great TE prospects in not only Ohio, but in the country, this kid stands out from the rest.
Dave: Many ask about Kyle Rudolph and how he's considered to be one of Ohio's top prospects. The answer is a simple one as Rudolph is a complete player on and off the field. With great athletic ability Rudolph can do all the things you ask from a tight end and do them at the highest level. He may not have the fancy offensive stats of others, but he's got all the small tools college coaches look for in a player. Overall understanding of the game and knowing his role allows Rudolph to help players around him play better. Complete package as he's already shown the ability to get separation after coming through traffic as well as get positive yards after the catch. Great blocker down field who has helped others break big plays and for all of these reasons Rudolph is well deserving of being at the top of the list.
1. Mike Adams – Dublin Coffman – OT
Bob: One of the best pass blockers I have seen anywhere in the nation and I have personally seen most of them. At 6-8/285 this kid can move and he is remarkably athletic for a man his size. One of the big recruiters as well, all the targets talk about Mike Brewster, but Adams is a close second.
Greg: I really do not see how anyone can defend this guy not being ranked in the top two in the state. He is an absolute dominating offensive lineman that moves extremely well. One thing that I noticed when watching other players on Coffman's team films is the fact that Adams gets down the field every chance he gets to do some damage. There are not many linemen that can move that well, or have the desire and tenacity to get it done. Looking at pictures of "Big" Mike does not really do him justice. You have to see him in person. He is an absolute mountain of a man that is built like a rock. He is also very young for his class and was only 16 when he was competing with the best of the best at the U.S. Army Combine down in San Antonio. The scary thing about Adams is he still has room to grow and mature his game as a lineman, but make no mistake… He will be a dominating offensive tackle and a potential All-Big 10 type of player.
Bill: "Big Mike" is the future left tackle at Ohio State. Period. Nobody else need apply. Adams is drawing comparisons to great Ohio O-linemen like Pace, Boone and Stringer, and I see why. His greatest asset is his great footwork. There are players his size all around Ohio, but nobody can move like this big guy. He plays the position like a dancing bear and you just can't get around him. Should Terrelle Pryor become a Buckeye, Adams will have his backside protected his entire career. After learning from Jim Bollman, Adams eventually will be another O-lineman cashing NFL paychecks. He has the ability to play from Day-1 and that's rare for the left tackle spot.
Dave: Having an offensive lineman at the number one spot of any list should give you some idea of how good Mike Adams projects to be. With great physical size and athletic ability Adams is the stud of a very good group of prospects for the Class of 2008. I like linemen who can move their feet and get to the second level, Adams does this and more. Playing in an offense that passes the ball has given Adams an edge in learning pass blocking skills. He'll project as a left tackle and has the total package with his long body and arm extension to keep defenders at bay. Mike Adams has NFL potential and the chance to place his name beside other OSU greats when he finishes his Buckeye career.