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.
Top 10 for Tavion Thomas: What’s the deal with him and Ohio State?
It’s the end of another evaluation week on the recruiting trail and a handful of the Buckeyes top targets in Ohio have decided it’s the perfect time to release their current top 10, 12 or whatever list.
Among those players? Dayton (Ohio) Dunbar 3-star running back Tavion Thomas. The 6-foot-2, 225-pound back has an Ohio State offer and therefore it’s unsurprising that he has included the Buckeyes in his top schools.
— lackofworries?? (@tavionthomas937) April 27, 2017
There are many folks out there who believed that Thomas, who also holds offers from LSU, Alabama, Michigan and Oklahoma among his almost 30 scholarship offers, already would be committed to Ohio State. Things, however, continue to move along relatively slowly and that’s probably a good thing.
The Buckeyes have a commitment at running back from Tampa’s Brian Snead, and he remains firmly committed to the Buckeyes as he has since last July’s unexpected decision. Ohio State hosted Zamir White, the country’s No. 1-ranked tailback two weekends ago, but any potential momentum gained from that trip was squashed with his return to Georgia, the favorite in his recruitment for a while now.
As spring turns to summer, this recruitment is definitely one to watch. Ohio State is the favorite but exactly where he fits into the recruiting class remains to be seen.
Blue Smith, same:
Perhaps Ohio’s most interesting prospect in 2018 is Wayne (Huber Heights) wide receiver L’Christian “Blue” Smith. The 6-foot-6, 205-pound Smith is a wide receiver for the Warriors and if it’s up to him, he’ll be a wide receiver in college.
Unfortunately for Ohio State, there are a number of people telling Smith that the Buckeyes are going to make him a tight end. That hasn’t set well with Smith, but he still included the Scarlet and Gray in his top 10 schools.
— BLUE SMITH⁶? (@bluesmith_) April 27, 2017
It’s very hard to say what is what with Blue Smith right now. He was expected to be at the Buckeyes spring game but wasn’t. That planned trip was on the heels of a frustrating few weeks for Smith, who was upset with an elevenwarriors.com column that seemed to suggest it was the Ohio State staff that viewed him as a tight end.
Kentucky seems to have a lot of the momentum in this recruitment at the moment, but I believe that if Ohio State, Notre Dame or Michigan really cranked up the intensity in the race, things would change drastically.
There’s no plan for a decision date at this time, so again, the delay seems to work in the Buckeyes favor as they try to organize a wide receivers board that needs some clarification.
Tyreke Smith to name his Top 12
OK, so maybe he hasn’t named it yet, but Ohio’s fifth-ranked prospect in the Class of 2018, also intends to release his shortened list of schools.
I will be announcing my top 12 schools on Friday ?? #Blessed
— Tyreke Smith™ (@T_23_baller) April 26, 2017
The list, expected sometime this evening (around 6 p.m. ET) is going to include a number of schools with a real shot to land the country’s eighth-ranked weakside defensive end.
If I were to wager a guess at who’d be included, the list would certainly include Ohio State, Penn State, Notre Dame and Michigan. Beyond that almost-guaranteed four, Smith’s West Coast roots mean that USC and UCLA, along with Oregon, will find their way into his final group.
For his final five schools? Lets add in Kentucky, Georgia, Alabama, Texas and…Cincinnati. There are many to choose from among his 37 offers, but that’s the bunch that makes the most sense.
Why is Ohio State in that top group?
“I have a great relationship with the coaches,” Smith told Land of 10 about the Buckeyes. “(Ohio State) is a great place to get an education and they have a great team. That’s two pretty big positives in one school.”
As of today, I’ve got the Buckeyes and Penn State battling this one out, with Notre Dame on the periphery. It’s never wise to bet against Urban Meyer, but James Franklin and the Nittany Lions have done a great job with Smith for a while and shouldn’t be overlooked.
And one more list…
This time, outside of Ohio.
The Buckeyes are in the top 10 for Fort Bend Travis (Richmond, Texas) High School wide receiver Arjei Henderson.
Big 10‼️ pic.twitter.com/JpmJRc4gIr
— Hendi™ (@king_hendi) April 27, 2017
Henderson, the ninth-ranked prospect in the 2019 recruiting class, is a former Oklahoma commitment that was offered by Ohio State in late February. He decommitted from the Sooners a week ago, saying he felt he committed too early and hadn’t fully considered his options.
The fourth-ranked player in Texas, Henderson caught 100 passes as a sophomore for more than 1,400 yards and 18 scores. The 6-foot-1, 180-pound wideout has not visited Ohio State.