As the younger brother of former Ohio State defensive tackle Marcus Green, Justin has held the Buckeyes in high esteem since he was in the fourth grade. Although they started showing interest in recruiting the multi-talented Green for their class of 2009 as soon as his junior season ended, he was not sure when – or if – he could expect an OSU offer.
Sunday, June 1 brought about a pretty big surprise, then.
"I talked with (defensive line) coach (Jim) Heacock on Sunday and he said I should be receiving a letter pretty soon here, either Tuesday or Wednesday," he told BuckeyeSports.com on June 3. "I'm still waiting on the letter, but he swore they offered me a scholarship. I think they watched my film recently and that's when they decided to offer me."
Now a 5-11, 180-pound prospect who accumulated 2,000 all-purpose yards and 31 touchdowns as a junior for Louisville (Ky.) Male, Green is taking his own steps into the recruiting world. He holds offers from the likes of Miami (Fla.), Alabama, Tennessee and Illinois, among others, but claims to not have a list of top schools.
However, any such list would apparently include the Buckeyes, a team he is familiar with thanks to his family background.
"They're very high up on my list considering that my brother played there and I got to be part of the program when Marcus went there," he said. "I got to see everything that goes on. They're very high on my list right now.
"I'm very familiar. I've been to all the games. We went to almost every game, every bowl game, we went to the national championship game. I know most of the coaches because Marcus was there."
The timing of the offer caught Green somewhat by surprise, but he said the timing of an OSU offer would not matter to him. The only concern was whether or not he would get one at all.
Had one come along in September or even later, it would have had the same effect on Green, who has been timed at 4.5 seconds in the 40-yard dash.
"I've got a lot of offers from other schools, but I didn't know they were going to offer me," he said. "I was kind of thinking they were, but I didn't know when. If they offered me, I thought it was going to be down the road.
"Even if they offered me the day before signing day it would still mean a lot to me. I've experienced Ohio State and it means a lot to me."
The Buckeyes – and most of the teams recruiting him – are looking at Green as an athlete. As a prep standout, he lines up at cornerback, wide receiver and running back. Given the choice, he said he is not sure which position is his favorite.
"That's a question I get a lot and I don't know," he said. "I'll probably know after my senior season what position I'd like to go into, but I've been playing on both sides of the ball since little league so it's kind of hard to pick. I'm used to always being on the field."
He is also always used to being around the OSU coaching staff. Green was in fourth grade when head coach Jim Tressel made an in-home visit to his older brother, and the next five years were spent traveling north to Columbus to see Marcus throughout his OSU career.
Now that he is the one being recruited, Green said the dynamics between he and the OSU coaching staff have changed slightly.
"It's kind of the same, but it's a little bit more serious now," he said. "I'm getting to know them a little bit better now that they're recruiting me. It changed a little bit but it kind of stays the same."
The plan moving forward is for Green to take a handful of unofficial visits this summer and try to narrow his list sometime near the end of August or the beginning of September. From there, he will take a number of official visits before making his final decision.
When he makes his official visits, one will be to Columbus – despite the fact that he is already familiar with the program.
"I really don't need to check them out but I'm going to do it anyways," he said. "It's one of my favorites, so I'm definitely going to take one. That's like a must: You've got to take an official visit to Ohio State."