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The 2013 Ohio State Recruiting Class...That Wasn't

  • On February 3, 2012—which was 367 days ago and only two days after National Signing Day—Michael Chung took a shot at an “early bird” prediction on what he thought Ohio State’s 2013 recruiting class would look like. At the time, we already had Cam Burrows and Jalin Marshall in the fold. Here’s who Chung predicted we’d add plus where they’re actually headed:

    1. LB Ben Gedeon, Hudson: Michigan.
    2. LB Courtney Love: Nebraska.
    3. RB DeVeon Smith: Michigan.
    4. ATH Caleb Day: Illinois.
    5. WR Shelton Gibson: West Virginia.
    6. OL Lovell Peterson: Grand Valley State (what’s up with that?).
    7. DL or OT Billy Price: Ohio State.
    8. QB Malik Zaire: Notre Dame.
    9. OT Evan Lisle: Ohio State.
    10. DB Eli Apple: Ohio State.
    11. QB Tra'Von Chapman: Pitt.
    12. OT Alex Gall: Miami (FL).
    13. RB Derrick Green: Michigan.
    14. OLB Mike McCray: Michigan.
    15. TE Mike Heuerman: Notre Dame.
    16. WR Kevin Gladney: Nebraska.
    18. OT Logan Tuley-Tillman: Michigan.
    19. OT Kyle Meadows: Kentucky.
    20. OLB Dymonte Thomas: Michigan.

    The purpose of this thread is not to find fault with Chung. If anything, his predictions were very reasonable, perhaps even predictable. Maybe even going so far as to say it was very Jim Tressel-like, the kind of class we’d become accustomed to at Ohio State. (Substitute Mitch Trubisky for Zaire and that could very easily have been my wish list.) Like mine, Chung’s list was Ohio-heavy—15 of his 20 were Ohioans, which is what we’d come to expect under Tressel but what’s interesting is that only three of those 15 are coming to Ohio State. His list was Ohio plus only four other states (New Jersey, Florida, Illinois, and Virginia). As it turns out, only 11 of our current 24 recruits are from Ohio (I'm counting Corey Smith, who went to JUCO in Mississippi); in fact, according to Rivals, Urban only offered a total of 20 Ohioans. FWIEW, the ninth player who got an offer besides the eight Ohioans on Chung’s list was Trubisky, which means Chung was pretty much spot-on in terms of which players from Ohio would get offers from Urban (of course, what we don’t know is were they actually “committable” offers?).

    In retrospect, Chung’s list is actually a testament to Urban Meyer’s recruiting prowess. He forewarned Buckeye Nation he was going to recruit nationally but we didn’t know what that meant. Most people expected we’d get Apple but I don’t think that a year ago, anyone in their right mind would have predicted we’d have gotten 13 recruits from 10 other states—Texas (3), Florida (2), California, Georgia, Missouri, New Jersey, South Carolina, North Carolina, Maryland and Indiana—plus a JUCO out of Mississippi.

    OOS recruiting is the new rule, not the exception. We should expect 2014's class to be Ohio Lite and OOS heavy.

    Best of luck to the 17 on Chung's list who aren't coming to Ohio State but more importantly, welcome to the 24 Buckeyes who are!


    Michael Chung's Sportswriter Profile | Bleach

    I am a Professor of Bible and Theology at two schools in Houston. Grew up in Ohio and went to OSU for my undergrad. I also write for the O-Zone ( ). My first book titled on spiritual issues will
  • Interesting. Perhaps some enthusiastic "recruitnic" could value this potential class with what we have coming in based on present rankings.

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  • Basically his success rate is the same as a monkey at the zoo making predictions by throwing crap against a wall. No offense to this guy, of course.

    It must be tough on these "experts" having to put their reputations on the line by trying to predict the unpredictability of 17 year olds.

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  • ...and what the hell DID happen to 4 star Lovell Peterson? Academics?

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  • He chose to do Track (I wouldnt assume the sprinting part of it)...

  • Actually, Chung's hit rate of 3 out of 20 is 15%. According to Rivals, Urban offered* 146 and has secured 24 commitments (16%), so Chung's batting average is about in line with Urban's. (* "offered" does not necessarily mean "committable")

    The thing is, a year ago, very few people here had heard of OOSers like Marcus Baugh or JT Barrett or Dontre Wilson or Ezekiel Elliott or Trey Johnson or Johnny Townsend or Tyquan Lewis or Michael Hill or Mike Mitchell or Tim Gardner or Taivon Jacobs. Maybe Joey Bosa. Probably Eli Apple (nee Woodard). But that was probably as much aa most of us knew about these guys. Heck, even in-staters like Tracy Sprinkle, Darron Lee and Gareon Conley were relative unknowns, maybe Christopher Worley because of the Glenville pipeline.

    The moral of the story is: don't bet against Urban. The man is unpredictable.

  • I thought he'd committed to Kentucky. Next thing I know, he's going to Grand Valley State.

  • You're right. To project where some top area prospects will go is indeed an inexact science--esp when using the Tressel model.

    Had Tressel still been here, many of those predictions would've come to pass--esp Heuerman, DeVeon Smith, Meadows and Derrick Green.

    Meyer as you've pointed out, recruits nationally. That's what he did at Florida as well. And Florida, like Ohio, is also one of the great football states ripe with talent just as Pennsylvania, California and Texas. But national recruiting has become the ultimate X factor in putting otherwise contending programs over the top. Notre Dame and Nebraska have always recruited nationally due to being located in relatively small states with small recruting talent samples to work with.
    Then by contrast look at the U of Texas as an example of a major program which doesn't by and large recruit nationally or doesn't feel a great need to. They get first diggs at the best in-state prospects while fighting for the others with Oklahoma and now Texas A&M. I believe that it's also one of the reasons why they have struggled these past few years. The point here is that in order to be competitive, you must pull talent from each state. It's becoming almost akin to a national political election in which you can't just focus on a few states. You have to conduct national recruiting searches for the types of players who'll fit best in your system. And that's what Meyer has done. It's like if you can pull either two quality recruits or get one great one from a particular state, it's almost as if you've won that state.
    Meyer did it at UF, Saban is doing it now at Alabama, Jimbo Fisher's doing it at FSU and Pete Carroll did it while at U$C.

    Tressel would've landed the best in-state prospects and then landed a few from Pennsylvania and Florida as well with there being one and maybe two top national prospects from some other state in play late in the process (think Marlon Brown, Tajh Boyd, Josh Jenkins, Mark Sanchez, Jason Gwaltney, Dwayne Jarrett, Shariff Floyd). That was his usual M.O. The changing of the tide for Tressel however was when he pulled in Curtis Grant two years ago. To me, that was major--even moreso than getting Pryor because you had to believe that at that time if it came down between us, scUM and Penn State that we had the advantage.
    But against Florida and some other $EC schools, not likely.

  • I agree.
    Trying to predict the unpredictability of 17 year olds and the potential self-serving natures of some of their guardians/parents. Recall Seantrell Henderson from a few years back who in large part made his decision based on what his father wanted.

    It's one of the things that ultimately led to him becoming the biggest bust of "top recruits" over the past five or so years.

  • IIRC, someone pulled the actual stats and Tress averaged 50% Ohio kids and Boss Man Urb has similar numbers

    Hating scUM since 1964

  • If you exclude the 15 guys who committed in last year's class prior to Urban's hiring (including Ricquan Southward and Adolphus Washington) since we don't know if he'd recruited them or not but we do know he honored their commitments, of the 10 guys who committed after Urban was hired, seven were from out of state (Spence, Schutt, Williams, Perkins, Reeves, Marcus, O'Connor). The three from Ohio were Decker, Pittman and Dodson.

    Add in this year's 11 and that's 14 of the 34 who committed since Urban was hired were from Ohio. That's 41%.