Clarke is a Buckeye

About a year ago Dominic Clarke was somewhat of an unknown commodity that didn't even have his name out there to the major recruiting services. After watching some highlights of the Tuscarora High School standout you knew that this was a kid who had some exciting potential and today that potential earned him a spot at one of the top programs in the entire country.

Dominic Clarke, a 5-foot-10, 170-pound cornerback from Frederick, Md., gave a verbal commitment to Ohio State today after receiving offers from the Buckeyes, Boston College, Maryland, Stanford and Virginia. Ohio State lost a great prospect in Darrell Givens recently and since then they have been scrambling to find another talented corner which they have in Clarke.

"I committed to Ohio State this morning," Clarke said. "We went down as a family on Friday night and had an academic meeting on Saturday morning. After that I met the strength and conditioning coach who really knows what he has talked about and there is proof of that with all the people he has helped to put in the NFL. Meeting with him made me feel very comfortable that I'd be in good hands."

"All of the coaches were great to be honest," Clarke added. "They're all younger, energetic guys and even Coach (Jim) Tressel has that energy. I also hear he is a player's coach and there is nothing better than having a coach that relates to the players like he does. I liked the entire staff a lot. They gave me a complete tour of the campus, I saw the stadium and dorms and they went over to the Hale Center and Black Cultural Center. I just liked everything I saw and it was a great experience."

Clarke talked to his parents during the visit as he wanted to commit right then.

"My family and I discussed it because my mother, father and sister where with me and I told them that this was what I wanted," Clarke explained. "The entire time I was there something was telling me that this was right, this was where I needed to be, so I went with my gut and committed. They've always treated me like family there, even before I had an offer and that was something that set them apart."

"I just want to go to the next level and elevate my game so I can do that, so I thought I might as well do it with the best because that's what Ohio State is. They are a national championship caliber team and being amongst the best caliber of athletes will just make me that much better."

Clarke was named MVP at the National Freshman/Sophomore Combine in Virginia and was also named the 2007 top sophomore at the Maryland Coaches Association Combine. He has been timed at 4.41 in the 40-yard dash, 4.04 in the short shuttle, 6.88 in the three-cone drill and has a 36-inch vertical leap. He claims a max bench press of 300 pounds, a max squat of 430 pounds and a power clean of 260 pounds. He carries a 4.0 core GPA.

Clarke is also an extremely accomplished track star for Tuscarora High School. His relay team placed second in the 4x400m and fourth in the 4x200m at the Maryland AAA outdoor state track meet and also took third place in the state indoor AA/AAA 4x200m relay. They were Frederick City Champions in the 200m, 400m and 4x200m relay and were also county champs in the outdoor 4x200m relay. The team was selected first-team MVAL Chesapeake Conference Indoor in the 4x200m and 4x400m relays as well. Individually, Clarke was named a first-team indoor and outdoor sprinter by the Frederick Newspaper.

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