Linder Looking At Summer Trips

Ohio State has made a point to recruit the state of Florida in recent years with some pretty hefty results. Four-star offensive lineman Brandon Linder holds a scholarship offer from the Buckeyes, and he discusses his top schools and where he might visit this summer in this update.

Two years ago, Ohio State landed a highly ranked offensive lineman from Florida. This year, the Buckeyes are hoping history can repeat itself.

After bringing in Orlando (Fla.) Edgewater offensive lineman Michael Brewster, who went on to start 10 games at center as a true freshman for the Buckeyes, OSU is now among the four finalists for Brandon Linder's services.

The four-star prospect from Fort Lauderdale (Fla.) St. Thomas Aquinas is rated as the top center prospect in the country, but that is not where he figures to play in college.

"Everyone is looking at me as a left tackle," Linder told "My sophomore year I played center and last year I played left tackle. I'll be at left tackle this year. It's my most comfortable position."

The 6-6, 290-pound Linder began playing for the varsity during spring football of his freshman year and has not looked back en route to becoming one of the top linemen in the country. He has narrowed his list of college choices to four teams: Miami (Fla.), Florida, Notre Dame and Ohio State.

Linder plans to take official visits to all four schools this fall, but first up might be two other trips.

"I'm looking to visit Ohio State and Notre Dame sometime at the end of the month," Linder said.

The Buckeyes initially entered the picture during the spring when they offered Linder a scholarship, but teammate Duron Carter helped things along. Set to be a freshman this year at OSU, the wide receiver was one of Linder's teammates for the past three years.

As such, when the coaches came to see Carter they could not help but notice Linder as well. On the other hand, Linder noticed the attention Carter received while being recruited but did not pay much attention to it.

"I'm going to do things my own way," he said.

He is being recruited by OSU offensive line coach Jim Bollman, who was instrumental in landing Brewster as well as fellow five-star recruits J.B. Shugarts and Mike Adams in the class of 2008.

St. Thomas Aquinas has won consecutive state championships with Linder in the starting lineup. As a junior, he earned first-team all-county and all-state honors.

Linder said the most important factors he is looking for in a school are the quality of an education as well as his relationship with the coaching staff. He plans to major in business.

Despite the attention he has received, Linder said he has not been overwhelmed by the recruiting process.

"I don't let it get to me," he said. "I just make sure I'm focused on what I need to be focused on. I don't let it be a distraction."

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