Ohio State’s 2013 recruiting class is drawing to a close – especially with offensive tackle Tim Gardner committing over the weekend – which means the Buckeyes will have to go over every list with the utmost scrutiny.
The remaining offers they have might go to a wide receiver – if not two – a linebacker – if not two – and maybe a defensive back.
With a stable full of athletes in the secondary, defensive back seems the least likely of the three, but Ohio State probably wouldn’t turn away ESPN 150 safety Vonn Bell, should he choose the Buckeyes.
The guess here is that Ohio State will cap out at 20 -- the Buckeyes are at 16 now -- with most of those commitments coming within the next eight weeks. Ohio State does have scholarship restrictions because of NCAA sanctions.
Here’s a top seven, in order of who we believe are the big names on the Buckeyes’ list at the two positions of the most need in the class.
1. WR Shelton Gibson (Cleveland Heights, Ohio/Cleveland Heights): It is clear Gibson wants the Buckeyes and he did little to hurt his stock last week with a strong showing at Friday Night Lights.
Gut feeling: This one looks like a matter of when and not if.
2. LB Mike Mitchell (Plano, Texas/Prestonwood Christian): The outside linebacker hinted that he might commit at Gridiron Kings, but then told DawgNation’s Kipp Adams, “I am going to hold off on my commitment because I have not been [to] Ohio State [to visit] yet.”
Gut feeling: One trip to Columbus could seal the deal.
3. LB Tyquan Lewis (Tarboro, N.C./Tarboro): Lewis came to Friday Night Lights to watch, but only saw about 30 minutes of the camp. He spent the next day with his mother talking to Ohio State brass to make sure the Buckeyes were a good fit.
Gut feeling: Both Mitchell and Lewis will be a great one-two for Ohio State.
4. WR James Quick (Louisville, Ky./Trinity): He hasn’t said much lately. He didn’t come to Friday Night Lights, but Quick’s speed makes him a top target of the Buckeyes as they look to close out the wide receiver position.
Gut feeling: He lives in Louisville. Louisville is on his list, yet he hasn’t cooled on Ohio State, either.
5. LB Christopher Worley (Cleveland/Glenville): Worley couldn’t make it to Friday Night Lights. That doesn’t mean there isn’t a place on Ohio State’s defense. Recruited as an athlete, the 6-foot-3, 190-pound Worley would fit nicely.
Gut feeling: Don’t discount the Ohio State-Glenville pipeline.
6. WR Devon Allen (Phoenix/Brophy): Allen showed off his speed, but grabbed even more attention with his precise route running and incredible hands at Friday Night Lights.
Gut feeling: fact Allen’s father, Lou, was a pitcher at Ohio State is big. Judging from Devon’s quotes, Notre Dame made a big impression, too.
7. WR Robert Foster (Monaca, Pa./Central Valley): Foster continues to keep the Buckeyes on his radar and he went on the record with TideNation’s Greg Ostendorf last week as saying he wants to visit Ohio State this fall.
Gut feeling: This is more a dream for Buckeyes fans. But never say never.