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One of Ohio’s top linebackers is staying patient
It’s a common theme in Ohio State recruiting that the Buckeyes ask recruits, particularly those in Ohio, to stay patient with the process. The evaluation process is a little bit more careful and slower-paced for Ohio State than some other programs, especially knowing the high likelihood of an in-state prospect to commit once offered.
That’s certainly been true in the Buckeyes coaching staff’s conversations with Clayton (Ohio) Northmont linebacker Jestin Jacobs, a 2019 standout from the Dayton area. Jacobs has more than 20 offers to his name — he says Iowa, Northwestern, Kentucky, and Iowa State are currently recruiting him hardest — and stands out as one the country’s top linebackers.
He visited an Ohio State spring practice on Friday, where patience was once again preached by Urban Meyer and his coaches.
“I thought practice was great,” Jacobs told Land of 10. “I loved the competitive edge to it and the energy. I got to see the campus and some of the facilities. I sat and talked with both Coach Meyer and [linebackers coach Bill] Davis. The meetings were great. They talked about the program and told me to be patient with the process.
“They mentioned that an offer could be coming soon. But if not I’ll have to earn it during a [summer prospect camp at Ohio State]. That offer would be big for me. It would be a dream come true.”
Jacobs visited the practice alongside his teammate, 2019 3-star defensive end Gabe Newburg, who recently committed to Michigan. Meyer similarly asked Newburg for patience in his process, but that was not in the cards for the Dayton area recruit.
Much like Newburg, Jacobs will have to compete for an in-state offer from the Buckeyes at a loaded position group in Ohio. Jacobs is one of 10 Ohio linebackers have received offers from Power 5 programs. But only one — Mansfield Lexington 4-star standout Cade Stover — has a Buckeyes offer. Jacobs knows it’s a competitive process to land the in-state offer, but he pays the competition little mind.
“We have a great group of players in Ohio. I tend not to pay attention to the others,” Jacobs said.
In addition to the four programs he named at the top, Jacobs also has offers from Michigan State, Pitt, Minnesota, Indiana, Vanderbilt and Cincinnati, among others. He’s regarded as the No. 43 outside linebacker and No. 600 player overall in the 2019 class on the 247Sports composite rankings.
Many programs have pursued the 6-foot-3, 210-pound linebacker, who has important criteria in mind for each school coming after him.
“I’m looking for a good coaching staff, a place that sends players of my position to the NFL, a competitive program and good academics,” Jacobs said.
Some of the other top Ohio linebackers to watch, in addition to Jacobs, are Massillon Washington’s Jamir Thomas, Cleveland St. Ignatius’ Tommy Eichenberg, Youngstown Cardinal Mooney’s Luke Fulton, and Reynoldsburg’s Dezman Cooper. And many others who will also compete for the Ohio State offer at camp.
Michigan standout has his ‘best visit yet’ to Ohio State
Clinton Township (Mich.) Chippewa Valley linebacker Marcel Lewis has already captured high-level in-state offers from Michigan and Michigan State. Other Power 5 programs in the region have offered, including Iowa, Minnesota, Pittsburgh, Indiana and Kentucky.
And the 3-star Class of 2019 standout continues to chase the opportunity to grow his offer list. Lewis has been staying in touch with Ohio State and finally made his first unofficial visit on Tuesday. And it sounds like the Buckeyes knocked it out of the park.
“Everything went really good. It was by far my best visit yet,” Lewis told Land of 10. “They showed me everything I needed to know about Ohio State and I got a chance to talk to the coaching staff and got a chance to talk to Coach Meyer, as well.”
After his rave reviews of the trip, I asked Lewis if anything he saw around Ohio State’s campus surprised him or stood out that he didn’t expect. He’s taken several visits to Michigan State and other programs, but wasn’t prepared for the Buckeyes’ emphasis on life in the locker room and outside of football entirely.
“Just how everything and everyone works well together. They talk about brotherhood a lot and I could feel that within everything that’s going on. Also, in learning about the program outside of football, they showed me something I have never seen before,” Lewis said. “It was about the internships and how the players got a chance to talk with the biggest companies across the nation. Coach Meyer wants his players to go outside not just having a degree, but also having a career outside of that.”
Lewis still has not landed an offer from Ohio State, but he feels that it’s on the way soon.
“Yes, they are very interested in me and want me to be patient. The coaches told me to trust them and that it is coming soon. They are coming to see me two times during the evaluation period,” he said, referring to the period from April 15 through May 31 when college coaches are allowed to visit high schools and see prospects work out or practice in person.
Miscellaneous news and notes
- 4-star 2019 Virginia defensive back Sheridan Jones was one of the many blue-chip prospects who visited Ohio State in recent days. Jones told Land of 10 that his visit “went great” and that he enjoyed himself around the coaches and players. I hope to have a more at-length update soon.
- 2019 4-star North Carolina quarterback Sam Howell, arguably one of Ohio State’s two most important targets at the position with Grant Gunnell of Texas, booked a trip to the Elite 11 finals. The Charlotte-area standout will compete at the event in Los Angeles on June 1. Howell joins Gunnell, Auburn commit Bo Nix, Wisconsin commit Graham Mertz, Oklahoma commit Spencer Rattler, and California native Ryan Hilinski as the first six invitees to the event.
- Ohio State will welcome yet another highly rated visitor to campus for an unofficial visit on Sunday. 2019 St. Louis-area wide receiver Jameson Williams will return to the school for the first time since seeing the Buckeyes wax Michigan State in Ohio Stadium on Nov. 11. Williams is ranked as a 4-star prospect, the No. 42 wide receiver in the class, and the No. 248 prospect overall.
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