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.
Emory Jones continues to work hard to build Ohio State’s class
A month ago, every time you went on to the internet to investigate the recruitment of 2018 Ohio State commit Emory Jones, you were met with rumors that he was looking elsewhere, or at least that he was “just making sure” about his commitment. The Franklin (Ga.) 5-star quarterback visited Georgia, almost in secret, on a two-day trip. He stopped at Alabama with his teammates during a 7-on-7 tournament, and he talked openly about wanting to check out Florida and Florida State at some point.
Still, for a player who seems (to some) unconvinced of his decision, Jones continues to be an effective recruiter for the Buckeyes. He was instrumental in the recruitment and eventual commitment of 4-star defensive end Brenton Cox, and he’s not done working to make the Ohio State recruiting class the best in the country. He’s made no bones about that over the last few months and today, in an interview with BuckeyeGrove.com’s Kevin Noon, he doubled down on that concept.
“I am just trying to recruit more,” Jones said. “Get the best of the best from anywhere, it does not matter which state. I have some people that I am talking to in Georgia right now.”
Jamaree Salyer, a 5-star offensive lineman, is one of those players, as are defensive backs Jaycee Horn and Christian Tutt.
Maybe the Buckeyes want Jones to travel throughout the country and visit other schools to help recruit for the Buckeyes? Makes you think, doesn’t it? He doesn’t seem like a player who is waffling.
Is there still room for Georgia LB Michael Harris?
As mentioned earlier this week, Ohio State missed on North Carolina 4-star linebacker Payton Wilson.
But by the end of May, the Buckeyes should have a good idea of what the roster of linebackers coach Billy Davis’ will look like in the future. On May 16, Toledo (Ohio) St. John’s Jesuit 4-star prospect Dallas Gant is scheduled to announce his college decision. Two days before that, Bishop Sullivan Catholic (Virginia Beach, Va.) 5-star inside linebacker Teradja Mitchell will return from Tallahassee, Fla., where he’ll have visited Florida State for the final time before he makes a college decision at the end of May.
Now, prevailing wisdom suggests that Ohio State is the leader for each player. If the Buckeyes land Gant and Mitchell in May, they could be done at linebacker, at least for a while. Players such as Lakota (Ohio) West 4-star Xavier Peters could be in line for an offer this summer if he camps with the Buckeyes as expected. If that happens, he’s almost certain to join the Ohio State recruiting class. That would leave one linebacker – a player who is very interested in the Buckeyes – potentially out in the cold.
Remember that player, Michael Harris? The Tucker (Ga.) 3-star linebacker we talked about at length in early March? Let me, if I may, refresh your memory.
Harris, the country’s 14th-ranked inside linebacker, told SEC Country’s Jeff Sentell that he was “100 percent” going to commit to Ohio State when he was fully cleared academically.
“One hundred percent,” Harris said when asked what the chances of a commitment to Ohio State would be if he secures the necessary test scores. “I’d love to go to Alabama, Georgia, Auburn. Those are nice schools. But growing up? The Ohio State is my school. It’s where I want to go. It’s cold up there, but I’m not worried.”
But … Harris hasn’t visited Ohio State, and there are no immediate plans for such a trip. With only one senior linebacker – but with the belief that Jerome Baker could be headed to the NFL after the 2017 season – the numbers at the position are very tight. Will there be room for Harris at some point? Maybe, but that’s not likely the case now, or at least until Gant and Mitchell make their decisions.
Perhaps that’s why, despite his public assertion that he’s all Ohio State, the Crystal Ball predictions could be starting to turn for Harris. Auburn and Georgia are on the prowl if the Buckeyes can’t find room.