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Insider

Ohio State outlook: Top 5 2014 OLs

7/31/2013
Damian Prince is No. 22 in the ESPN 300 and the No. 3 offensive tackle. Tom Hauck for Student Sports

Ohio State picked up two of its top five offensive line targets in Jamarco Jones (Chicago/De La Salle) and Demetrius Knox (Fort Worth, Texas/All Saints Episcopal) in the past month. But it's no secret that the Buckeyes want more, as they need more depth.

With that in mind, here’s a recap of the top five offensive linemen Ohio State is recruiting:

1. OT Damian Prince (Forestville, Md./Bishop McNamara)

Offer: Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Auburn, Boston College, Buffalo, Clemson, East Carolina, Florida State, Georgia Tech, Houston, Iowa, Maryland, Michigan, North Carolina, North Carolina State, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Rutgers, South Carolina, Syracuse, Tennessee, Texas Tech, USC, Virginia, Virginia Tech, Wake Forest, Washington, West Virginia

Outlook: The 6-5, 285-pound ESPN 300 tackle has been on campus more than a handful of times. That said, he wants to have a top five before the season. Maryland, Florida State and Ohio State are almost a lock to be there. He’s a fan of Urban Meyer, Zach Smith and Ed Warinner and likes their straigh- forward approach.

2. OT Chad Mavety (Garden City, N.Y./Nassau Community College)

Offers: Alabama, Arizona State, Arkansas, Connecticut, Florida State, Illinois, Kansas, Kansas, State, Miami (Fla.), Nebraska, North Carolina State, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Ole Miss, Rutgers, South Florida, Syracuse, Tennessee, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, USC, Virginia Tech

Outlook: The Buckeyes have a legitimate shot to land the 6-6, 320-pound Mavety. The team to beat looks to be Florida State, however. He recently took an official visit to the Seminoles and has said he’d like to come back for a game. There’s some work to be done to get him thinking about Ohio State as his leader. He hasn’t named a top five.

3. OT Alex Bookser (Pittsburgh, Mt. Lebanon)

Offers: Alabama, Boston College, Duke, Florida State, Georgia, Georgia Tech, Illinois, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan State, Missouri, Nebraska, Northwestern, Ohio State, Penn State, Pittsburgh, Rutgers, Tennessee, Toledo, USC, Virginia, West Virginia

Outlook: The 6-6, 295-pound Bookser has a top eight that consists of Alabama, Michigan State, Northwestern, Ohio State, Penn State, Pittsburgh, Tennessee and Virginia. However, he might take his time in deciding. He’s from Pittsburgh, so the Panthers are always a factor. It might be tough to pull him out of the Keystone State.

4. OT Brock Ruble (Hyattsville, Md./DeMatha Catholic)

Offers: Connecticut, Florida, Florida State, Maryland, North Carolina State, Ohio State, Pittsburgh, Rutgers, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Virginia Tech, West Virginia, Wisconsin

Outlook: A three-star prospect, he was on campus this week and loved the visit. The Buckeyes have company in Florida State, Maryland, North Carolina State and Tennessee. The fact Ohio State received an unofficial visit is huge, as he doesn’t make many trips. The 6-9, 322-pound Ruble is one to watch as he might break down his list of favorites soon.

5. OT Braden Smith (Olathe, Kan./Olathe)

Offers: Alabama, Arkansas, Colorado, Iowa, Kansas, Kansas State, Michigan, Missouri, Nebraska, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Stanford, TCU, Texas, Texas A&M, Virginia

Outlook: The 6-7, 285-pound Smith liked his visit to Ohio State in the spring. He also liked what was going on in Alabama on his visit, and that was just a few weeks ago. In the end, we still see this ESPN 300 prospect at TCU, where his sister is a track and field standout.