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Thursday, March 7, 2013
Ohio State outlook: The top 5 OTs of 2014

By Brad Bournival

As the 2014 recruiting class comes more and more into focus following what was yet another strong national signing day for Urban Meyer, BuckeyeNation will take a position-by-position look at the juniors.

We’re going to start with the biggest position of need and move forward. That means today it’s the offensive line, where Ohio State has already picked up commitments from Marcelys Jones (Cleveland/Glenville) and Kyle Trout (Lancaster, Ohio/Lancaster).

Here are the top five offensive tackles not committed somewhere else and with an offer from the Buckeyes. As expected, all five are ESPN Watch List standouts.

1. Braden Smith (Olathe, Kan./Olathe)

Braden Smith
Olathe, Kan., tackle Braden Smith's offer list reads like a who's who of college football.
Offers: Colorado, Iowa, Kansas, Kansas State, Michigan, Missouri, Nebraska, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Stanford, TCU, Texas, Texas A&M, Virginia

Outlook: At 6-foot-7 and 285 pounds, Smith has the build to play left tackle. He’s going to continue blowing up on the recruiting scene and is planning to visit Ohio State.

2. Damian Prince (Forestville, Md./Bishop McNamara)

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

Outlook: Another matchup nightmare at 6-7 and 300 pounds. His 31 Division I offers prove he’s a hot commodity. It’ll be a fight to grab him.

3. K.C. McDermott (Wellington, Fla./Palm Beach Central)

Offers: Alabama, Auburn, Florida, Florida Atlantic, Florida International, Florida State, Miami (Fla.), Michigan, Michigan State, North Carolina, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Oklahoma, South Florida, Virginia Tech, Wisconsin

Outlook: Another big boy at 6-6 and 274 pounds, his brother Shane plays center for the Hurricanes. He might be hard to pull out of Florida.

4. Quenton Nelson (Red Bank, N.J./Red Bank Catholic)

Offers: Boston College, California, Connecticut, Georgia Tech, Maryland, Miami (Fla.), Michigan State, Nebraska, North Carolina, North Carolina State, Northwestern, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Old Dominion, Penn State, Pittsburgh, Rutgers, Stanford, Temple, Tennessee, UCF, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin

Outlook: His recruitment has completely taken off after a very strong junior season. The Buckeyes can make great headway when the 6-5, 285-pound Nelson takes an unofficial visit March 28-29.

5. Jamarco Jones (Chicago/De La Salle)

Offers: Arizona State, Arkansas, California, Florida, Florida State, Georgia Tech, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maryland, Michigan, Michigan State, Mississippi State, Nebraska, Northwestern, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Ole Miss, Purdue, Syracuse, Tennessee, Texas Tech, Toledo, UCLA, Vanderbilt, Virginia, Wisconsin

Outlook: On Jones’ latest trip to Columbus he got a chance to go behind-the-scenes and talk things non-football related. No bad reports came back, which was a plus for Ohio State in regards to the 6-5, 285-pound prospect.