DeVier Posey only visited Ohio State twice before he committed to the Buckeyes. At the time of his commitment he had yet to see an Ohio State home football game. His friendship with Jacob Stoneburner was his first contact with the "Brew Crew."
"My first visit to Ohio State was on a weekend after signing day in February," Posey began. "I was talking with Jake Stoneburner because we knew each other from playing basketball. He introduced me to Big Mike [Adams] and we hit it off real well. We hung out together that weekend. I had visited a few other schools like Cincinnati and Kentucky before being offered by Ohio State. I was really knew to the recruiting process."
Posey received his offer from Ohio State the following weekend after his first visit. His offer from the Buckeyes, combined with a budding friendship with Stoneburner and Adams, made him an early favorite to be part of the "Brew Crew."
"I received my offer on the Wednesday after signing day," Posey explained. "I think that was the first opportunity Coach Hazell had to really look at all the wide receiver prospects. He told me that I was the first receiver he had offered. I thought that was pretty special. At that point I knew how badly Ohio State wanted me to be a Buckeye. I knew a few other Cincinnati area players that had Ohio State offers in the past, but committed to other schools. They had said some bad things to me about Ohio State, but I just never saw what they were talking about. From talking to Coach Tressel and Coach Hazell, I just never believed what those guys were saying to me at all."
Obviously Posey didn't heed the advice of his hometown friends. A second visit to Columbus was all it took for the Buckeyes to secure his commitment. A little over a month from his Ohio State offer was all it took for DeVier Posey to publicly announce his intention to play college football for Jim Tressel and the Buckeyes.
"I didn't want to commit during basketball season," he continued. "The night my team lost in the tournament my mom and I headed for Columbus. On Saturday I hung out with Stoneburner and Adams. That was also the first time I met Michael Brewster. We all hung out at "Big" Mike's house and talked about playing together in college. The next morning I had breakfast with Coach Hazell and I also sat down with Jim Tressel for about two hours. That conversation was so important because we just talked about everything but football. I just felt so comfortable with him and I knew right then I would be a Buckeye, but I didn't tell him or anyone else at that time. That night as we were driving home I told my mom to stop at the Nike outlet so I could buy some Buckeye gear, because that's where I was going to college. She thought it was a quick decision, but I told her I knew in my heart it was the right place for me. She was fine with my decision, but she just wanted me to be sure."
It didn't take long for Posey to notify his future head coach that he was going to be a Buckeye. That night, only a few hours after leaving Jim Tressel's office, Devier Posey called him and told him the good news.
"After buying my Buckeye hat I called Jim Tressel," Posey recalled fondly. "He was in his office with Coach Hazell at the time talking about my visit. I thought that was pretty cool and I told him I was a Buckeye. They were both really excited. Then I called Jake and Big Mike and told them what I had done. Mike had already committed and I knew Jake was going to, so we all knew we were going to be together. I decided to call Brewster and tell him, and I was so surprised that he was the most excited of everybody. Here he was all excited about me and he hadn't committed yet. I thought that was pretty funny, but that's how "Big Boy" is. I got on him pretty good about that and we both laughed like crazy. That was really the start of our friendship really taking off."
The surprising thing about his commitment is that it all happened so fast. DeVier Posey was not a household name in recruiting circles, unlike his more famous buddies. He had no clue that Ohio State knew he was alive until early January of 2007.
"I had no clue I would be committing to Ohio State in March," Posey explained. "I had never visited the Woody Hayes facility, or even checked out the dorms at all. I never really saw the campus, because I had never been invited to Ohio State during my junior season. In fact, the Akron game two weeks ago was the first time I had seen an Ohio State game in the stadium. A lot of recruits got invited to the Michigan game, probably close to 100 of them, but not me. In fact, I never got invited to any Ohio State games as a junior."
When you consider that Ohio State brings in a huge number of recruits during a football season, it's almost inconceivable that Posey was not even a marginal prospect. He was not a prospect at all, so he decided to change that by doing his own public relations work.
"After my season I had heard nothing from Ohio State at all," Posey said. "I was totally under the radar, so I went about getting my highlight tape professionally done. I sent it out to about 25 schools and I didn't know if it would help. I only caught 33 passes in my junior year, so I wasn't sure people knew about me. Out of the 25 tapes I sent out, I only received one reply saying it was received, and that was from Ohio State. Coach Hazell said he was very impressed and they started recruiting me right then and there. I visited Michigan after that and they treated me like a rag doll. I tried to talk to Coach [Mike] Debord but he didn't even know who I was. At that time my top three schools were Cincinnati, Virginia and Northwestern. I thought that might end up being my final top three."
Posey's efforts to get his tape out paid off handsomely. Shortly after, he began a realationship with Ohio State wide receiver coach Darrell Hazell that culminated in Posey becoming a Buckeye and a "Brew Crew" member.
"Coach Hazell said after watching my tape that he knew I could play at Ohio State," Posey explained. "He was interested in finding out if I was truly 6' 3" and when he found out that I was, it really got him interested in me. Everything took off from there. This year has been crazy for me. I wasn't like all the other recruits, who have been well known for years. I came out of nowhere, I guess you could say. I wasn't at the Junior Combine in San Antonio like Jake and Mike were. No recruiting services were calling me all the time, trust me. All these accolades are nice, but I'm used to being the underdog, not some superstar like the other guys. I need to find a new challenge now so I can fight for something. I do better with my back against the wall. My challenge to myself will be to get on the field next year for Ohio State. I do better when I'm coming off the bottom."
Posey is actively following recruiting on the internet and admits to being amused by the "Brew Crew" nickname. He also feels naming the class after Mike Brewster is appropriate.
"I talked to Jake and Brewster about committing," he explained. "After Brewster committed, it really started taking off. Getting the "Big Boy" to make it official was huge in trying to recruit other players. You saw what Shugarts did right after Brewster announced. The first person I talked to was Terrelle Pryor, believe it or not. I actually gave his number to Brewster, but I contacted him first. I tracked him down on MySpace and told him to check out my film. I asked him if he wanted to throw the ball to me and he answered me back and we've been cool ever since. I never thought he would answer me, but he said he could see himself throwing to me. Once Brewster got involved with him, then Brewster just took control of the situation. Then I got acquainted with Lamaar Thomas. Brewster put me on Andrew Sweat and Garrett Goebel, and we kind of switched players back and forth. Brewster is the best recruiter among all of us, so our class should be named after him. He works really hard and has the personality for it."
Speaking of Lamaar Thomas, Posey and the rest of the "Brew Crew" spent time with Thomas this past weekend during his official visit to Ohio State. Posey feels the Buckeyes have an excellent chance at landing Thomas.
"I know Lamaar had a great time and our plan of making him feel comfortable worked," Posey explained. "When you go on recruiting visits you're all by yourself and you meet players for the first time. That can be uncomfortable, so we all decided to get here and make Lamaar feel at home. We wanted to eliminate him feeling uneasy, so we were with him the whole time and went to the game with him. We all hung out last night and it gave him a chance to see what the school is like and what we would be like as teammates. I know he felt comfortable and we'll see how it goes at Illinois this coming weekend. He'll make the right decision for himself and his family. Hopefully he chooses the Buckeyes and I think he just might be coming here with us."
The common theme of the 2008 Ohio State recruiting class is the maturity and intelligence of the 11 commits. Obviously, DeVier Posey fits in like a glove with the rest of his future teammates. He spoke about what the opportunity to play for Jim Tressel means to him personally.
"Jim Tressel is the best person and the best coach," Posey stated emphatically. "How can you beat that? All I read is how this was going to be a rebuilding year for Ohio State, but look at where they are now. I know they lost a lot of great players, but Jim Tressel knows how to coach football and he knows how to win. He's also one of the best human beings I know. He's a man that always tries to do everything right. I know I can learn a lot from him and I'm sure he can help me become the man I want to become after spending four years with him."
Tomorrow we will take another inside look at the "Making of the Brew Crew." Tomorrow's subject will be kicker Ben Buchanan, the first player to commit in this class. We will continue to delve into the players and personalities of the 2008 Ohio State recruiting class all week long.