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Buckeyes get comfy in Michigan

DETROIT -- Ohio State made itself right at home in enemy territory.

It apparently has plans to come back often as well, preferably with some recruits in tow.

Starting with an appearance by new coach Urban Meyer in the morning and followed by the majority of the staff getting to lead workouts in the afternoon at the Sound Mind Sound Body Academy at Southfield (Mich.) High School, the Buckeyes were almost impossible to miss on Wednesday.

There were five coaches leading position meetings in the afternoon, including a spirited defensive line seminar by position coach Mike Vrabel outlining the toughness it takes to play for him.

A couple more assistants got in the mix after that when it was time to step outside the classrooms, giving the Buckeyes at least one representative on all three fields when drills resumed.

And by the time they all climbed back on a glistening tour bus to head back home, it was clear the message Meyer had delivered in the morning was no joke.

"We have some very good players from this area," Meyer said. "If we have not [recruited it well], we will."

The Buckeyes already have a couple starters from across the border projected as starters after spring camp, but there's not any company from Michigan for right tackle Reid Fragel or defensive lineman Johnathan Hankins on the current roster.

The chance to help change that by making themselves visible during the first session of the two-day camp -- while also getting an opportunity for some extra evaluation -- was too good to pass up for Meyer and the majority of his staff. In fact, it was almost too good to be true.

"This is so unusual," Meyer said. "I can't believe we're allowed to do this.

"When I first heard this three weeks ago, I started laughing. 'You can't do that.' "

The compliance department assured Meyer that he could, right along with the handful of other Big Ten programs and smaller schools in attendance, but the Buckeyes perhaps took the best advantage of the event with hands-on instruction and invaluable face time with recruits.

Whether it ultimately helps the Buckeyes land a few targets is up for debate in Michigan, and how much of a boost it might provide is difficult to gauge.

But either way, it's clear Meyer has no problems stepping into a rival's backyard.