Brittany Schock / Asst. photo editor
If anyone thought Urban Meyer would take a vacation once the hustle and bustle of National Signing Day passed, that person was poorly mistaken.
Just two weeks after securing the fourth-ranked recruiting class in the nation for 2012, according to recruiting outlet Rivals.com, the Buckeyes have already received commitments from the top two players in Ohio for the class of 2013.
Still four months away from completing their junior year in high school, defensive back Cameron Burrows of Trotwood-Madison High School in Trotwood, Ohio, and athlete Jalin Marshall of Middletown High School in Middletown, Ohio, rated seventh and 41st in the nation, respectively, by Rivals, have given verbal commitments to attend Ohio State.
Burrows, rated as the third-best defensive back in the country and a five-star prospect, recorded 46 tackles, four interceptions, and 12 pass breakup in his junior year, helping Trotwood-Madison to a 14-0 season and a state title. Burrows committed on Jan.19 and will help solidify the Buckeyes secondary likely at corner.
Marshall, who plays quarterback for his Middletown team, is listed as an athlete and is projected to play wide receiver or running back at the next level. He threw for 782 yards and six touchdowns and ran for an astounding 1,859 yards and 20 touchdowns. He committed on Jan. 30 and will likely be a wide receiver in Columbus as a speedy playmaker and possibly returning kicks.
The commitments are huge for Meyer and the Buckeyes, who will try to put a fence around Ohio’s borders and reel in as many prospects from what is projected to be one of the deepest talent pools in the state in recent history.
Michigan coach Brady Hoke persuaded last year’s top-rated player in Ohio, offensive tackle Kyle Kalis of St. Edward High School in Lakewood, Ohio, to head north and become a Wolverine, after having previously committed to the Buckeyes.
But that was then and this is now. Meyer’s recruiting prowess has been on full display for the world to see in his short time in Columbus.
And he wasn’t done yet.
On Tuesday, Billy Price, a defensive tackle of Austintown Fitch High School in Austintown, Ohio, also gave a verbal pledge to Meyer, making the class three-deep. Price is ranked as the 11th best defensive tackle prospect in the nation, and 130th overall by Rivals. Price, a four-star prospect, gives the Buckeyes commitments from three of the top 10 prospects in Ohio.
But wait, there’s more.
Defensive back prospect Eli Woodard, rated as the fifth-best defensive back prospect nationally and 28th overall, announced that he will be making his college decision this Thursday via Twitter. Woodard, the top-ranked player in New Jersey, was in Columbus this past weekend on an unofficial visit, and is said to be picking between OSU, Notre Dame and Rutgers.
Should Woodard commit to the Buckeyes, he would give Ohio State three of the top 41 recruits in the nation for the class of 2013. By comparison, the Buckeyes only had two commitments from the top 60 prospects in 2012, and that was a full year’s class. National Signing Day 2013 is still more than 11 months away.
To be sure, nothing is set in stone. Meyer, who was recently the subject of criticism after signing players who had verbally committed to other schools, knows better than anyone that until there is a signature on paper, these players could change their mind.
But regardless of the possibility that these recruits will change their minds before National Signing Day 2013, Meyer is scary good at this stuff.
And with spring practice getting ready to begin, September creeps closer, and there is plenty to be excited about in Columbus as a new era begins.