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Wednesday, January 23, 2013
Signing day primer: Ohio State

By Brad Bournival

Team needs: Ohio State needs a defensive front seven to jell quickly in 2013. The only returning starter from last year’s front seven is Ryan Shazier, and while he’s a great one, he needs some help.

Eli Woodard
Five-star cornerback Eli Apple is already enrolled at Ohio State.
The secondary is strong with every player returning, but the defensive line will be incredibly young this season. There’s also a need for a wide receiver. That’s more a numbers game, however.

Help is on the way: Urban Meyer hasn’t messed around in trying to fix the problem. His two-deep chart on defense last season included freshmen Adolphus Washington, Tommy Schutt, Connor Crowell, Camren Williams and Joshua Perry, and Crowell is leaving the program because of medical issues. This year, he has six defensive linemen coming in and another three linebackers.

Other key commits: With ESPN 150 athletes such as Eli Apple, Gareon Conley, Trey Johnson, Cam Burrows and Mike Mitchell helping ESPN 300 seniors Michael Hill, Donovan Munger, Jayme Thompson and Billy Price, the defense should shore up quickly. At wide receiver, expect Taivon Jacobs and ESPN 150 slot receiver Jalin Marshall to make noise early.

Other key targets: ESPN 150 safety Vonn Bell, Oregon commit Dontre Wilson and four-star wideout James Clark are being eyed, as is ESPN 300 slot receiver Cornelius Elder. Cameron Hunt and Dan Skipper could help on the offensive line.