Since the announcement that Urban Meyer accepted THE job at The Ohio State University, his impact on the 2012 recruiting class has been felt in a few states. I, for one, am excited to see how Coach Meyer improves the reach on our recruiting program, in Michigan, in Illinois, in Pennsylvania, in Georgia, and in Florida; bring some of that Big Man speed that the SEC has been known for, to OSU. OSU never has trouble landing the skilled players, but our seasons always hinge on our offensive and defensive line play. It looks like Coach Meyer recognizes the same thing based on his early recruiting involvement.
Gaining the verbal commitment of Noah Spence, 6’4”, 245 lb. DE from Harrisburg, PA, #5 on ESPNU 150, appears to be the most significant of his early success. This signing of Spence has to sting in Happy Valley. Penn State had to assume that they get the good players in their own back yard. Check out the film on this guy; he is fast, he is strong, he has a big wing span, and he sheds blockers as good as anyone. His speed reminds me of the SEC brand of defensive line play that we have grown to hate and that makes us jealous. Watch for big things from Mr. Spence.
The Urban influence was also felt in Illinois, with a reach into Happy Valley. Tommy Schutt, 6’3”, 305 lb. DT from Glen Ellyn, Illinois, and # 130 on ESPNU 150, continues our history of landing solid defensive linemen from the land of Lincoln. Schutt de-committed to Penn State a few weeks ago, as the Sandusky Scandal began to reveal itself. Schutt is big, strong recruit that should provide a nice interior base for the speedier Spence.
While Schutt was correcting his future plans, Se’Von Pittman was correcting his thinking as well. Pittman, 6’4”, 230 lb. DE from Canton, Ohio, #100 on ESPNU 150 list, has decided to de-commit from Meechigan State and commit his future to OSU. The film on Pittman shows that he has decent speed, can shed blockers, and stay in pursuit until the whistle blows. He played end and linebacker at McKinley High, which also continues our defensive pipeline to the region where high school football has its origin.
I hope to see that Coach Meyer can take back the Cincinnati recruiting battle from Notre Dame! Perhaps the verbal from Adolphus Washington, 6’4”, 250 lb. DE from Taft High in Cincinnati is the beginning of that correction as well. Washington boasts the #75 ranking in the ESPNU 150! (Washington signed days before the Meyer announcement.)
I had always considered Coach Meyer the offensive expert, but these early recruits show me that he recognizes that defense wins championships and that he has the recruiting touch. As far as recruiting goes at OSU, John Cooper could recruit, but could not win the important ones; Jim Tressell landed the big named skill players, but could not manage the issues that came with the talent. I am hopeful that Meyer can match the Cooper & Tressell strengths in recruiting, but bring a balance and discipline that is needed in Columbus.
Time for some Gator Salad. Go BUCKS!