Recruiting never stops, and if you take a day off, you fall behind. Join us every night for a daily recap of Ohio State recruiting news, insight on what’s happening behind the scenes, and for a glimpse at what’s coming next.
Gaoteote updates injury status
Last Friday night’s classic tilt between No. 7-ranked St. Thomas Aquinas (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) and top-ranked Bishop Gorman (Las Vegas) lived up to the hype. The Gaels, led by Ohio State 2017 commitment Tate Martell, outlasted the Raiders and their 5-star wide receiver, Trevon Grimes, 25-24 in triple overtime, a win that almost assuredly will lead to a third straight national championship for Martell and Bishop Gorman.
That’s a big story, of course, but the bigger story – at least from a recruiting standpoint – were the injuries suffered in the game. On Sunday night, we had an update with Grimes, who will miss the rest of his senior season with a torn ACL. But he was not the only Ohio State target in the game that found himself hurting. Bishop Gorman’s Palaie Gaoteote, the nation’s top-ranked outside linebacker in the 2018 class, played the second half with a man-sized cast on his right hand.
“I had a dislocated thumb,” Gaoteote, who forced a key first half fumble against St. Thomas, told Landof10.com. “I didn’t get to pop it back in until halftime. I had to stay in the game; I wasn’t going to leave that one.”
How much pain was Gaoteote in?
“On a scale of 1-10? It was a 10,” he said. “After I popped it back in, I’d say a seven.”
Ohio State hopes to see the 6-foot-2, 220-pound linebacker on campus for the first time early in the next few weeks. He’s expected to visit Columbus with his teammates for a Buckeyes home game at the end of October or the beginning of November.
2019 Georgia wide receiver feels comfortable at Ohio State
Most of the time, when a top-10 player – in any recruiting class – visits Ohio State, it’s a big deal. However, this past Saturday, when 2019 wide receiver Jadon Haselwood visited the Buckeyes, it happened without much notice. Haselwood, a 6-foot-3, 190-pound sophomore at Cedar Grove High School in Ellenwood, Ga., said he really enjoyed the trip, regardless of the lack of fanfare.
“My coach told me like two weeks ago we were coming to (visit) Ohio,” said Haselwood, the country’s 10th-ranked 2019 player. “It was great. I love it. I liked how the guys on the field played as a team. After the game, I stayed with Austin Mack at his dorm, and everyone just treated me like family.”
— G.O.A.T ? (@Bcg_jadon) October 2, 2016
Haselwood said he has 15 scholarship offers, including some big name schools from around the country.
“I have 15 offers, just not one from Ohio State,” he said. “That would be big for me. I’ve got offers from Tennessee, Michigan, USC, Georgia and ‘Bama. I’ve visited Tennessee, Michigan, USC , UGA, ‘Bama and LSU. What makes Ohio State differ from those schools is that they kind of remind me of home a little bit. It’s a city and all that good stuff , but they also have a good fan base and their fans really love the players and recruits.”
Ohio State assistant coaches Zach Smith and Larry Johnson Sr. – who became familiar with 8Cedar Grove while recruiting former Buckeyes target Antwuan Jackson, now a freshman at Auburn – are recruiting the young wideout. He’s got a long way to go before signing day, but he’s starting to narrow down what he’s looking for in a college.
“I want to get my education and win football games as well as having the fun college experience,” he said. “I’m looking for a team that can spread the field and be balanced with the run and the pass. I saw a lot of that on Saturday.”
Keep your eyes on this one over the next two years.
Buckeyes make offer to 2018 Georgia defensive end
Another Georgia prep star was in Columbus this weekend as well.
Brenton Cox, a 6-foot-4, 235-pound defensive end out of Stockbridge (Ga.), visited Ohio State with Jadon Haselwood.
Arrived at Ohio state this morning ?⚪️?
— Brenton™ (@Brenton_cox) October 1, 2016
Cox is a 2018 prospect with 13 listed scholarship offers, including Alabama, Tennessee, Nebraska and Louisville. Like Haselwood, he’s being recruited by Johnson, who visited his school in the spring, beginning their relationship. On Saturday, he saw Ohio State for the first time and liked what he saw. Ohio State must have as well: They offered Cox a scholarship during his visit.
“It was great man,” Cox, the country’s 14th-ranked strong side defensive end said. “I loved the atmosphere, the coaching and the rotation they had going on with the players.”
Though he’s been recruited by Johnson, Cox did get a chance to talk with Urban Meyer on Saturday as well.
“We sat down and had a conversation,” Cox said of Meyer. “He was a cool dude. He joked around a little bit.”
The Buckeyes are a relative newcomer in this recruitment, but Cox said they will be on a soon-to-be-shortened list.
“I‘m going to narrow it down probably in the next two weeks,” Cox said of his school options. “Down to my top 10, I can’t really say right now what schools are standing out, but Ohio State will be (on the list).”
Ohio State and another Michigan running back?
While redshirt freshman Mike Weber – a Detroit legend – is running wild all over the Big Ten, a junior at Davison (Mich.) High School is beginning to turn heads on his own.
Tariq Reid, a 6-foot-tall, nearly 200-pound back, has been tearing it up so far in 2016. In his first five games, Reid has piled up 930 yards on the ground and scored 20 touchdowns, bursting onto the recruiting scene.
He has visited Michigan State, and this past weekend made his first visit to Ohio State. He does not have any scholarship offers yet, but he’s getting mentioned regularly now in Michigan’s Mr. Football talk. That, he said, is what has brought him so much recent attention.
“The attention is mainly a byproduct of game tape and the social media buzz about Mr. Football,” Reid told Landof10. “Scout.com’s Allen Trieu made an article about me and my visit to Michigan State, and then after that article was posted, Ohio State’s Twitter account followed me and direct messaged me. I was interested in checking out how their running backs fit into my playing style and the school.”
After his trip to Columbus, Reid thinks things went pretty well.
“The visit went great,” he said. “I hit it off pretty good with (Ohio State running backs coach) Tony Alford. What stood out to me was the way the coaches approached me and talked to me first. I liked after the game how the guys really looked like a family in the locker room.”
Ohio State already has a running back committed in their 2018 class – Tampa’s Brian Snead – and they’re heavily in the mix for 5-star prospects Jaelen Gill (Westerville, Ohio) and Zamir White (Laurinburg, N.C.), so it’s gauge how much they’ll pursue Reid.
But the Buckeyes definitely made a big first impression.