Mr. Bucknuts's Recruiting Scorecard

This report is Mr. Bucknuts' unique attempt to coordinate and grade the recruiting process on a dynamic basis between mid-October and the end of recruiting season for the Class of 2003. As players commit – or emerge on the scene – the report will change to reflect that. Your comments are welcome! Send all broadsides to MrBucknuts@yahoo.com.

AVAILABLE SCHOLARSHIPS

As of this writing, there will be 11 seniors graduating from Ohio State following the 2002 season. There is an additional vacancy, making it 12 scholarship openings for next season's recruiting class. Lastly, Jessie Kline quit the team due to injuries, Marco Cooper has been suspended indefinitely, Derek Morris failed to qualify and Richard McNutt is expected to take a medical hardship scholarship. I am assuming a few more players will transfer or drop out, leaving a total of 20 available scholarships.

PLAYER POSITION

NUMBER NEEDED

COMMITMENTS

NUMBER STILL NEEDED

 PLAYERS I WANT

GRADES SO FAR

TAILBACK

0

None

0

 

N/A

FULLBACK

0

None

0

 

N/A

QUARTERBACK

1

Todd Boeckman

0

Brady Quinn

B

TIGHT END

1

Louis Irizarry

0

 

A

WIDE RECEIVER

1

Devin Jordan

0

Jayson Swain
Ernie Wheelwright
Bryan Williamson

B

OFFENSIVE LINEMAN

5

None

5

Jorrie Adams
Joel Holler
Andrew Bain
Sian Cotton
Cyrim Wimbs
Ofa Mohetau
Kenyon Buford

Dan Mazan

Sam Baker
Ty Hall
Dan Pribula

INCOMPLETE

DEFENSIVE END

2

None

2

Mario Williams
Doug Van Dyke

Tim Washington
Raymond Edwards
Victor Abiamiri

Shawn Crable
Michael Hearn
Allen Billyk

INCOMPLETE

DEFENSIVE TACKLE

2

None

2

David Patterson
Moe Dampeer

Brandon Maupin
DeMarcus Tyler

INCOMPLETE

LINEBACKER

2

None

2

Tavares Gooden
Wesley Jefferson

INCOMPLETE

SAFETY

2

Curt Lukens

1

Prescott Burgess
Michael Bush
Travis Tolbert

B

CORNERBACK

3

Tony Gonzalez

2

Donte Whitner
Tarrell Brown
Ira Guilford
Dareus Hiley
Ashton Youboty
Mike Phillips

B

KICKER/PUNTER

1

None

1

David Dyches
Adam Graeslle
Brian Monroe

INCOMPLETE

TOTAL

20

5

15

 

B

 

LEGEND

Red: He has already committed

Blue: He is my most preferred to fill the needs at that position

Green: He is my backup to fill the needs at that position

Black: OSU is recruiting him at that position but he is not my preferred player

Needs by Position

Tailback: The Buckeyes have four star-power tailbacks, the "oldest" of which is merely a sophomore in eligibility. Even if one transfers (my guess would be Riley), three tailbacks fighting for time is enough. And next year is a bumper Ohio crop for RB's with Delbert Ferguson looking super for OSU.

Fullback: A question mark here. Brandon and Branden have two more years to go and Tressel does love the power game. We don't seem to be seeking additional help this year. Perhaps a position switch for someone (Stan White?) is in the offing.

Quarterback: There's not enough footballs to give five QB's meaningful reps. But Krenzel and McMullen will be seniors. Zwick, Smith and Boeckman will all begin next year as freshmen. All that said, I'd take Quinn if he becomes available again.

Tight End: Hartsock will be a senior, Hamby will be a sophomore, and Arden just might stick here as a sophomore, too. Red shirt frosh RJ Coleman could stay a TE (or move to OL) and Stan White could move to FB or LB. So we need one more to fill the pipeline. And we got one of the best in Louis Irizarry. That's enough.

Wide Receiver: Eight of the nine wideouts return next year (Jenkins, Gamble, Carter, Childress, Hollins, Chattams, Holmes and Hall) with the latter two being very promising freshen red shirts. There could be transfers, and we need one or two more to keep the pumps primed. We have one in Devin Jordan. If a super WR is ready to commit – and is eligible – I think we'll take him.

Offensive Line: The five healthy starters (Bishop, Stepanovich, Olivea, Douglas, and Clarke) will be seniors in 2003. The only "front line" back-up is Adam Olds and the four freshmen. We need 15 front-line guys in various stages of productive development so we need five more this year and probably five next! There could be position switches in the works (Coleman and Schafer).

Defensive End: If Will Smith stays, we'd have him plus Darrion Scott plus Simon Fraser plus Mike Kudla. That's a lot of pluses. Plus, look out for Jay Richardson. Even so we will be minus three of those pluses in the next two years. And there's a sensational group of DE's looking at OSU this year.

Defensive Tackle: Tim Anderson will be a senior and Scott might move to the inside as we lose Peterson and Thompson. Joel Penton and Quinn Pitcock are a great pair of up-and-comers while Marcus Green could also be a force. We need at least one Young Blood, and I say two, if we can pick them up from the three on my list.

Linebacker: Four great ones last year and it's still not enough? That's right. Grant and Wilhelm are leaving and Reynolds is a year behind them. The freshmen trio will need support. We can't forget Cliff Reynolds but he's just a walk-on. I would slot Burgess here as a safety/LB but he might not fill either of those slots (at least for us…). So there's a need for at least one more.

Safety: The great pair of Doss and Nickey are going and Will Allen will be a senior. Even if Fox moves back here, we are relying on Everett and Salley to be support guys and for nickel/dime status. So two more should be sought with Curt Lukens already signed on and the Burgess discussion already explicated. Michael Bush could solve this dilemma.

Cornerback: EJ Underwood is the future but the Britton/Jacobs group seems to be the past. Fox might stay put, but we need two superstars to come in. And they are out there.

Kicker/Punter: Groom is gone and Sander will be after one more year. Huston and Nugent will be juniors and you don't want to put another true freshman in Nugent's shoes. So, this is the year that another kicker needs to emerge – hopefully, a combo guy.

OVERALL CAVEAT: The total Report Card analysis assumes that a number of unmentioned players do not contribute in a significant way. I hope I am wrong and that superstars emerge from that group, but that is not a bet I am willing to make at this time.

 


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