BRADENTON, Fla. – In 2016, Ohio State signed two of Maryland’s best high school players, linebacker KeAndre Jones and quarterback Dwayne Haskins, Jr. In 2017, they have a commitment from Maryland’s top player, defensive end Chase Young.
In 2018, they’re chasing hard after Florida’s top-ranked player – who moved to the IMG Academy from Baltimore – defensive tackle Taron Young. The 6-foot-2, 285-pound lineman is the country’s highest-ranked player at his position for 2018.
“I talk to (defensive line coach Larry) Johnson and (Urban) Meyer once a week,” Vincent said, referencing the current status of his relationship with the Buckeyes. “We’re really tight. I went to camp up there this summer. I like Coach Johnson a lot, I love how he teaches and the techniques he teaches. You see all the guys he puts in the NFL, so you know he knows what he’s doing.”
Helping the Buckeyes show “testimony and not theory,” a favorite term of Urban Meyer’s this summer, is Malik Barrow, who is a true freshman at Ohio State that played defensive tackle alongside Vincent last year. The 2018 prospect says that the ability to see his former teammate develop certainly helps the Buckeyes and he knows that playing at IMG will make his own transition to college easier.
“Since Malik Barrow was here, I think that has a big influence (on me), seeing how he’s developed from IMG to a place like Ohio State,” he told Landof10. “I think it’s easier for a guy from IMG because it’s pretty much college. Mentally and physically, I’ve really developed myself. You have to be a special kind of player to make it here, you can’t just like football, you’ve got to love it.”
Right now, it’s the Buckeyes at the top of the list for Vincent, the son of former Wisconsin Badgers cornerback Troy, who now serves as the NFL’s head of Football Operations since 2014. Florida State, UCLA and Michigan are among the other teams that he says are near the top of his list. To separate the leaders from the pack, it’s going to come down to the basics: comfort.
“Really,” Vincent said. “It’s about just talking and sitting down with the coaches and how I feel at the school. Seeing if they have my major, and overall just the whole atmosphere of the school and the program. They’re all great schools though.”
As mentioned, the IMG star did visit Ohio State this summer for a one-day camp with the Buckeyes and he’s hoping to get back on campus this fall.
“I want to catch at least one game at Ohio State this season,” he said. “We’ve not talked about a potential game yet. I’d love to get up there for the Michigan game, though.”
There’s no specific timeline for Vincent to commit, but a visit to Ohio State at the end of his football season may help the Buckeyes secure a commitment, if he can make it.
“I’m not sure when I want to commit really,” he said. “But maybe sometime after the season and before next season probably. I will decide whenever I know I’m ready.”