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.
Gill ready to work for Ohio State
In case you missed it Wednesday, Ohio State landed a big-time commitment from Westerville (Ohio) South’s Jaelen Gill. The country’s third-ranked all-purpose running back is likely to be a hybrid player for the Buckeyes but, most importantly, Gill emerges as a local ambassador for the Ohio State program and a player who can become the face of the 2018 class.
The chance to help build his class played a large role in Gill’s decision to announce his commitment earlier than he had originally planned.
“I didn’t want to wait any longer,” Gill told Land of 10. “It felt like time. Players are already kind of deciding where they want to go. We need to make a move on them immediately.”
When Gill says “players” he’s speaking about kids all over the country who are considering Ohio State, but on Wednesday he specifically mentioned 5-star Ohio lineman Jackson Carman as a player he’s focusing on.
“He’s one of the priorities, hands down,” Gill said of Carman. “He’s the No. 1 tackle in the country. We’re excited and trying to get him, obviously, and I think we have a great chance to get Jackson. I speak with him about three-four times a week at the least.”
Gill and his family are willing to open their home to help the Buckeyes land the players they’re interested in.
“Since I live so close, about 20 minutes from campus, my house is always welcome to anyone if they’re visiting,” Gill said. “It’s just a family at Ohio State and they stress that.”
Emory Jones, Jaiden Woodbey talk new addition
Two of the players who will feel the most impact from the commitment of Gill? Five-star quarterback commitment Emory Jones and 4-star safety Jaiden Woodbey. Though there are three other players committed in addition to Gill (we shouldn’t forget Brian Snead), it’s Jones and Woodbey who have been working with Gill primarily behind the scenes to recruit other prospects.
For Woodbey and Jones, the addition of Gill is an exciting bit of momentum for the Buckeyes’ 2018 class.
“They are going to make a (ESPN) ’30 for 30′ on our class,” Woodbey told Land of 10. “That’s how special this class will be.”
Jones spoke similarly, though with a touch less hyperbole.
“(Landing Gill) is just the start,” the Georgia standout said. “This is going to end up being the No. 1 recruiting class in America.”
Ohio State is currently second in the Big Ten behind Penn State (which has 11 commitments to the Buckeyes’ four), but Gill said the 2018 recruiting class won’t take a backseat to the second-ranked 2017 signing class.
“The 2018 recruiting class,” Gill said. “If it’s not as good as the 2017 (class), I think it might be better.”
Ohio State set to host rising in-state linebacker
The Buckeyes are just days away from starting spring practices, and with that we’re preparing for an influx of recruiting news, especially on-campus, weekday visits to the school. These trips are vital for relationship development, especially with in-state prospects.
So that’s why it’s very valuable for Lakota West’s Xavier Peters, the nation’s 16th-ranked outside linebacker and one of the hottest recruits in the country this winter, to get to Ohio State as often as he can. He’ll start with a visit to Columbus on Friday.
Going up to OSU?⚪friday!! An UK? Saturday!! great weekend?? #thankful
— xavier peters#1 (@xavierpeters22) March 2, 2017
Ohio State has not offered, Kentucky has (naturally, the Wildcats offer every warm body that puts on shoulder pads in Ohio), but there’s a lot of speculation that the Buckeyes are getting close to extending a scholarship to the 6-foot-4, 220-pound Peters. He told Land of 10 he hopes they do.
“I’m praying they do (offer),” Peters said. “I’ve been talking with them for a little while now.”
New linebackers coach Billy Davis has been handling the majority of Peters’ recent recruitment. Peters likes the approach taken by Davis, citing his straightforward manner as a style he can identify with.
“We get along great,” Peters said of Davis. “He is just all about business, straight up. I’m about business as well and he knows that.”
Would an Ohio State offer mean the end of recruiting for Peters? Not just yet, he says.
“It would mean a lot,” he said of the potential offer. “But, I mean, I can’t just commit right away. This process takes time.”
The first steps in the process are coming this weekend with the in-person, on-campus visit to Ohio State on Friday.