- Marcus Hartman Staff Writer
The first early signing period for college football recruits has begun.
After trying to sort out some of the biggest storylines this morning, we found there was plenty more to talk about.
Here are five more things to know about what happened and what’s next:
1. Ohio State signed another top five class, but it still felt a little disappointing.
Yes, but only a little bit if we’re being honest.
In the long run, timing of commits doesn’t matter, but it does have a way of affecting feelings on signing day — as Jim Tressel learned more than once.
Urban Meyer not only missed out on Fairfield’s Jackson Carman but also lost long-time commit Jaiden Woodbey to Florida State and quarterback Emory Jones to Florida (not a shock given recent developments).
The class picked up receiver Cameron Brown (who had been committed to Nebraska) but still dropped behind Georgia for the No. 1 class in the country.
2. Penn State is coming hard.
Questions remain about James Franklin’s ability to actually coach (especially after losing offensive coordinator Joe Moorhead, who left to become head coach at Mississippi State), but he sure can recruit.
The Nittany Lions class is ranked fourth in the country, contains three five-stars and might continue to grow.
Franklin signed top 15 classes the two previous years.
3. Michigan signed no players from Ohio (yet).
I haven’t been closely following the Wolverines’ recruiting, but this is interesting nonetheless considering their history of taking future stars from the Buckeye State.
Seeing Jim Harbaugh’s class rank outside the top 10 (at this point) is also surprising.
Perhaps he is planning to unearth a few hidden gems between now and early February.
4. Lots of good players are still available.
Watching the recruiting boards reset across the country should be fascinating — especially after early NFL draft decisions are done in mid-January.
Once that happens, lots of coaches are going to decide they have some new needs and different priorities than they do now, and that’s going to be good news for players who haven’t signed yet.
Locally, that group includes Springfield athlete Leonard Taylor and receiver Caleb Johnson, Trotwood-Madison running back Ra’veion Hargrove and receiver Dallas Daniels, Dunbar running back Tavion Thomas and Joseph Scates and Lakota West linebacker Xavier Peters.
5. Who’s next?
The early rankings for 2019 indicate the area might not have quite as large a group of highly-rated recruits, but there are certainly going to be plenty of players getting lots of attention from Division I coaches.
Fairfield coach Jason Krause had a lot of great things to say about tight end Erick All, who has visited Ohio State a couple of times and receive his fourth offer last night. That was from Syracuse.
Alter quarterback Bazelak was offered by Vanderbilt on Wednesday, and teammate John Bivens figures to be one of state’s most-sought-after running back prospects next year.
Other players to watch include Sidney quarterback Andre Gordon (who is also a basketball prospect), Lakota West defensive lineman Steven Faucheux, Springfield defensive back Moses Douglass and lineman Isaiah Gibson and Wayne defensive back Justin Harris.