Ohio State could be leader for Timmons

Ryan Timmons' finalists are coming out in droves before the pending dead period later this month.

The ESPN 300 athlete from Frankfort (Ky.) Franklin County said he has talked to coaches from Arkansas, Kentucky and Ohio State. Buckeye coaches were in town to visit him on Tuesday. Coaches from Kentucky and Illinois were scheduled to see him on Thursday.

The Illini are looking to break into Timmons' list of finalists. As difficult as that could be, at least he still has an official visit he can take if necessary.

Timmons has had a mighty challenge to evaluate his list of finalists. Three of his finalists -- Arkansas, Kentucky and Purdue -- have had coaching changes. That would seem to signal good things for Ohio State. Timmons has shown strong interest in the Buckeyes. He is scheduled to take an official visit there on Jan. 11.

It's reasonable to think that Timmons could commit on that trip. The nation's No. 252 prospect has said he won't commit until his mother sees his chosen school. She is scheduled to make that trip to Columbus. Timmons has already taken official visits to Purdue and Arkansas. He has said he plans to take an official visit to Kentucky, but, as of Wednesday, had not scheduled that visit.

Getting to know coaches will be key in his recruitment. Timmons said he was fond of Purdue's coaching staff after his official visit there in November. Since, the Boilermakers have completely changed under new coach Darrell Hazell.

Arkansas hired Bret Bielema from Wisconsin earlier this month. Kentucky hired Mark Stoops, the former defensive coordinator at Florida State. For now, Timmons has different reviews for both.

"For UK, it's a good fit for them," Timmons said when asked of the hires. "Arkansas coaches, I'm not sure because their staff isn't full yet and haven't talked to them all."