Wednesday, December 5, 2012
Eight OSU commits hope to sway visitors
By Brad Bournival
Billy Price will be among the Ohio State pledges in Columbus on official visits this weekend.
Ohio State coach Urban Meyer is looking for a little help from his friends, and not just his assistant coaches.
That’s why the two-time national champion and first-year Buckeyes coach isn’t resting on his resume this weekend.
With ESPN 150 targets such as linebacker Mike Mitchell (Plano, Texas/Prestonwood Catholic), offensive guard David Dawson (Detroit, Cass Tech), cornerback/wide receiver Gareon Conley (Massillon, Ohio/Washington) and ESPN 300 defensive tackle Donovan Munger (Shaker Heights, Ohio/Shaker Heights) scheduled to take official visits, Meyer needs all the help he can get to land the big four.
So he’s bringing in two Ohio defensive players of the year commits with him as well as a running back commit who scored 100 career touchdowns.
With defensive Tracy Sprinkle (Elyria, Ohio/Elyria) and Billy Price (Youngstown, Ohio/Austintown Fitch) -- the aforementioned players of the year -- joining century club touchdown maker and running back Ezekiel Elliott (St. Louis/John Burroughs), there’s no doubt Mitchell, Dawson, Conley and Munger will get an earful.
Add commits Cam Burrows (Trotwood, Ohio/Trotwood-Madison), Darron Lee (New Albany, Ohio/New Albany), Evan Lisle (Centerville, Ohio/Centerville), Tim Gardner (Indianapolis/Lawrence Central) and Jayme Thompson (Toledo, Ohio/Central Catholic) making their official visits this weekend and there will be eight committed Ohio State athletes in Columbus.
“We just try and give them our best input on why Ohio State is the team to play for,” Sprinkle said. “We let them know that, then Coach Meyer and the coaching staff does the rest.”
Mitchell and Conley will no doubt probably be the two biggest targets the Buckeyes go after. Ohio State has been trying to get Mitchell on campus for a while as the 6-foot-4, 216-pound outside linebacker has been wanting to come to Columbus. The ESPN 150 linebacker would fill a need almost immediately with the team.
Conley has become a hot commodity as of late and Meyer showed how much the Buckeyes were interested in him when he made an in-home visit last week. The fact Meyer and five of his coaches hung around Massillon last weekend for the state finals meant a lot. Massillon Washington coach Jason Hall was seen with the OSU head coach or one of his assistants often over the state championship weekend.
With only Lisle and Gardner as offensive linemen in the Class of 2013, Dawson becomes a big target as well as Munger, a two-way lineman in high school.
And while virtually every Ohio State commit will be weighing in on why to come to Ohio State, some might sit back and just let the surroundings do the talking. Ohio State is also having a rally at St. John Arena on Friday night in celebration of the Buckeyes' 12-0 season and Leaders Division title.
“To me, Ohio State and the atmosphere speak for itself,” Price said. “If you can’t fall in love with the city and the passion for Ohio State football with the fans, and the people in the city, then Ohio State isn’t for you.
“It’s time for them to become part of greatness and be a part of building a national championship team.”