Jeremy Birmingham / Land of 10
Archie Griffin has lent support to past players seeking compensation for having their images utilized by Ohio State's corporate sponsors.

Major recruit decides Monday, Thad’s Boys advance in basketball throwback tourney, Ohio State playing legal defense

Jeremy Birmingham

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Today is Monday, July 17, and it’s time to Wake Up Sloopy.

D-day is here for top tight end recruit

Ohio State will get great news or bad news Monday on one of the program’s highest-priority recruits in the 2018 recruiting class.

Lindenhurst (N.Y.) tight end Jeremy Ruckert, the country’s top-ranked tight end, will announce his college decision at 3 p.m. ET.

From Sunday evening’s Dotting the ‘Eyes, your Land of 10 Ohio State recruiting notebook:

When you stack up the four finalists on Ruckert’s list, there’s no doubt that of the four Ohio State has utilized the tight end the least — at least in recent years. If you want one reason why a player of his caliber is so important to Urban Meyer, that’s why. The Buckeyes have recruited this position well, but Ruckert is on another level.

I think the relationships Ruckert has established with Ohio State will win the day and carry the Buckeyes over Michigan.

Final call: Buckeyes.

Ohio State did not sign a tight end in its 2017 recruiting class and has kept the 6-foot-6, 240-pound Ruckert as its top target at the position since he showed at last summer’s Friday Night Lights camp and was without question the top player at the position.

Stay tuned to Land of 10 this afternoon for full coverage of the decision. In addition to the Buckeyes and Michigan, Ruckert listed Notre Dame and Wisconsin as finalists.

Scarlet Gray runaway

The Scarlet and Gray, a team of former Ohio State basketball players including some of Thad Matta’s most notable alumni, bounced The Banner Boys 72-58 on Sunday afternoon to advance in The Basketball Tournament, an event comprised of former college players with a $2 million prize.

The Banner Boys, a team of former Milwaukee-Wisconsin players, struggled to keep it close against the mostly-Buckeyes squad thanks to some hot shooting and air-tight defense from Aaron Craft.

The Scarlet and Gray are now 2-0 in The Tournament – did I mention the winning team wins two million dollars – and will look to stay hot in the final four of the Midwest bracket against a team of mostly former Bradley Braves.

That game will take place on Saturday, July 22, at noon ET. It will be televised on ESPN.

Check out the full bracket here.

Or is it Scarlet and Green

In case you missed it on Friday, another group of ex-Buckeyes – this time it’s football players, though – also made some noise this weekend about representing Ohio State.

Or, more accurately, about how Ohio State is representing them. Led by Chris Spielman and at least somewhat backed up by Archie Griffin and others, the suit seeks to provide financial compensation to past players who are having their images utilized by Ohio State’s corporate sponsors.

Spielman and Griffin are not alone in the fight. According to Rob Oller of the Columbus Dispatch, former Buckeyes lineman Jim Stillwagon was also happy to see something being done to slow down what has become an unstoppable money train for the athletic department.

“It’s not the money part of it so much, but (Ohio State’s) attitude toward how they run their operation — with an iron fist, and they smash anyone they can,” Stillwagon said. “But then when you come at them, they say it’s all about giving scholarships. I’ve had dealings with that (OSU) marketing group and they’re abusive.”

Stillwagon loves Ohio State. He and his Buckeyes brethren simply want OSU to love them back by spreading the wealth.

“This (licensing compensation) is just a correction that needs to be done. This is the way it is now,” Stillwagon said. “Coaching is about money. Where you get to sit in the stadium is all about money. But they don’t want to talk about that. Funny, it’s against the mother nation, you know?”

Yes, Jim, I do know, I really do.

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