- Jared Shanker, ESPN Staff Writer
Ohio State was already at the top of the list for 2014 defensive back Darius West (Lima, Ohio/Lima Central Catholic). His visit to Columbus on Saturday only strengthened that lead for the Buckeyes.
"The visit was off the charts and I don't think it can get better than that," West said. "The fans were loud and intense. The players and the coaches were definitely fired up also."
The 5-foot-10, 183-pound West, a member of the ESPN Watch List, does not have an offer from the Buckeyes but that could come sometime during the spring. Akron, Bowling Green, Cincinnati, Indiana, Purdue and Toledo have already offered West.
West, who could play either cornerback or safety, kept his eye on the Buckeyes' defense. He was impressed at how Ohio State responded in the second half after allowing 21 first-half points.
"What made the game so much better though is how good the defense played in the second half," he said. "Whatever the defensive coaches said at half worked."
Buckeyes assistant Tim Hinton is recruiting West, but Everett Withers was looking to talk with him, too.
"Coach Hinton was excited I was there and the safeties coach [Withers] said he was looking all around for me," West said. "He said he was happy I was there and he's going to be in the school sometime next week."
Cincinnati, Illinois, Indiana, Purdue and Wisconsin make up the rest of West's top group.