Cody Cousino / Photo editor
For Ohio State coach Urban Meyer, going out of state to recruit the top players in the country isn’t foreign territory.
Meyer already has seven out-of-state high school players who have verbally committed to OSU for the 2013 season.
Recruits from New Jersey, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Missouri, Florida, Texas and California will represent the Buckeyes in the 2013 football season.
Marc Givler, recruiting analyst at BuckeyeGrove.com, said there are several reasons for Meyer’s success when it comes to out-of-state recruiting, including his coaching experiences in different regions of the country.
“He’s coached in Ohio so he’s got the Midwest ties, he’s coached in Utah so he has the West Coast ties and he’s coached in Florida so he’s got the Southeast ties,” Givler said. “He’s built all these relationships with high school coaches across the country, so it’s pretty easy for him to get in the door.”
Meyer can’t take all the credit for out-of-state recruiting because his assistants within his staff have played a major role in getting these players as well. When Meyer assembled his coaching staff, he did so with recruiting in mind.
“This staff was put together with a purpose,” Meyer said on National Signing Day Feb. 1. “And recruiting was without question a purpose in putting together this staff.”
Kevin Noon, managing editor for BuckeyeGrove.com, said assembling a national staff of assistant coaches has been pivotal in Meyer’s success.
“He’s able to go into Texas because of (offensive coordinator) Tom Herman and he’s able to go into North Carolina because of (co-defensive coordinator) Everett Withers, so he has some reach thanks to the guys working for him,” Noon said.
In addition to recruiting players from around the country, Meyer has also maintained OSU’s appeal to in-state athletes.
Givler said it is equally important for Meyer to win Ohio and keep in-state high schools happy.
“You have to keep healthy relationships with high school coaches and players within Ohio also, because you don’t want to alienate yourself from your own state,” Givler said. “Meyer’s done a good job of keeping the balance.”
Meyer’s theory is simple, which is to get the most talented players regardless of what state they are from.
Noon said Meyer, along with all coaches, will always go national with recruiting because it’s all about getting the best available talent to help win games.
“It all comes down to winning games, competing for the Big Ten and competing for a national championship in a couple of years,” Noon said. “If you can’t find certain talent in your own state, then it’s natural to go looking for it on the national level.”
Steve Helwagen, managing editor for Bucknuts.com, said quarterback prospect J.T. Barrett, out of Rider High School in Wichita Falls, Texas, is one of Meyer’s most impressive out-of-state recruits.
“The scouts have him listed as the No. 1 run-pass quarterback because he can drop back and throw from the pro style, or he can take off and be effective running the ball,” Helwagen said.
Joey Bosa, a 6-foot-4, 225-pound defensive end from Fort Lauderdale, Fla., and Lewis Neal, a 6-foot-1, 232-pound defensive end from Wilson, N.C., are Meyer’s most recent committed recruits.
Helwagen said OSU will always be a popular destination for national recruits with Meyer as coach.
“He’s won two national championships,” Helwagen said. “He’s produced a bunch of NFL guys, his reputation along with Ohio State’s tradition is what kids want to be a part of.”