After hosting a number of highly ranked prospects for the team's annual spring game, one player who appeared to be firmly on the OSU wagon was Plantation, Fla., two-way standout Brandon McGee. While in Columbus, McGee wore an OSU jacket to the game and spoke at length afterwards about how impressed he was with all the Buckeyes had to offer.
But as time has passed, those feelings have dimmed somewhat – but not enough to knock OSU out of the picture by any stretch of the imagination.
"I'd definitely say the ‘wow' factor wears off, but either way I still had a great time and I was very impressed when I was up there," McGee told BuckeyeSports.com. "It still has an effect on me, but the ‘wow' factor kind of calmed down a little bit."
However, the Buckeyes remain high on McGee's list that is still being pruned on a daily basis. The four-star cornerback prospect is in the process of narrowing down a list of top schools, and to do so he will undertake a few unofficial visits this summer.
"I'd definitely say Tennessee and North Carolina have made progress for me," he said. "I have a great relationship with (recruiting coordinator) John Blake over at UNC and the secondary coach (Everett Withers) and (head coach) Butch Davis is a great coach as well. Also I have a great relationship with the Tennessee staff, with (defensive backs) coach (Larry) Slade and (running backs) coach (Stan) Drayton and (head) coach (Phillip) Fulmer as well."
From there, McGee said he is also hoping to take an unofficial visit to Georgia this summer as well. Those trips aside, there is also the possibility of a swing through the Midwest to check out a few schools as well.
Should the latter trip take place, a stop in Columbus might be on the itinerary.
"Ohio State is definitely one of those schools, but if I'm not able to make it maybe I'll just save them for one of my official visits," he said. "I'm starting to get an idea (of who to visit officially) because I'm trying to make a top five in my head. I'd say I'm definitely starting to get an idea."
However, getting to the point where he can name a full list of top schools has proven difficult, the 6-0, 180-pound prospect said.
"It's been definitely ridiculously hard," he said. "From having so many options and really thinking of what would be the best place for me, it's quite hard. I don't really understand how people could commit early when they've got so many offers. It's definitely a hard process and a lot of thought goes into it because my college is where I'll be spending the next four or three years of my life."
The Buckeyes are looking at McGee, who plays quarterback in high school, as a cornerback with the potential to play on both sides of the ball in a role similar to the one Chris Gamble saw during his time at OSU. With his posted time of 4.45 seconds in the 40-yard dash, McGee could factor into the return game in college.
Asked what his favorite thing to do on the football field is, McGee listed returning kicks.
OSU already has three verbal commitments from defensive backs – two cornerbacks and one safety – for its class of 2009. But as the class continues to fill up, McGee said he is not worried about his spot being taken.
"All of the schools that have offered me have told me that they have guys they will wait on," he said. "I'm really in no rush to commit early because of a shortage of scholarships. All of the coaches tell me to take my time. I'd definitely say it would be hard if they were putting pressure on me, but the fact that they're not is a great thing."
McGee is being recruited by OSU cornerbacks coach Taver Johnson, safeties coach Paul Haynes and head coach Jim Tressel. As he tries to narrow his list, early playing time is one of his primary factors.
"I pretty much narrow down my list based on the chance of playing early and then the stability of the program," he said. "All my top schools are basically schools I could go into early and contribute to early."
And while his top five might not be settled, there is one school firmly nestled there.
"Ohio State is definitely in my top five," he said. "(There's) probably not (anyone else) at the moment, but I know Ohio State would be one of those schools."