COLUMBUS, Ohio – Turn on one of the highlights of Luke Montgomery playing offensive tackle Findlay High School, and within the first 15 seconds, you’ll understand why you have a soccer scholarship offer from the state of Ohio.
By the end of the 7:21 video from your 2020 sophomore season, you’re probably wondering why you had to wait so long to win it, making OSU the 16th school to do so.
It passes every vision test that can be done on a 16-year-old with a 6-foot-5, 260-pound body, an athletic pedigree, and a motor that can’t be taught.
That OSU offer was always coming through, so when he announced on February 18 that the day had finally come, it was no surprise. Although Montgomery’s offer was a foregone conclusion, he was shocked when offensive line coach Greg Studrawa spoke the words.
“He was very excited,” Montgomery told cleveland.com. “I was quite speechless. That was a very good experience. “
That offer prompted Monica Johnson, the mother of OSU offensive lineman Paris Johnson Jr., to pick up the phone to share the excitement of seeing the son of a family friend receive appropriate rewards for his hard work.
The two families date back to the days when Johnson and Montgomery’s parents, Paris Sr. and Mike, were teammates at the University of Miami.
Given Johnson’s potential, the chances of the five-star sons playing together may be slim: Johnson is entering his sophomore season as Buckeye after leaving Princeton High School in Cincinnati, and he may be in the NFL when Montgomery Enter your freshman college football season.
“They were so excited, they just wanted to congratulate me, and I thought it was really cool,” Montgomery said. “He was one of the best offensive linemen to ever play high school football in Ohio, and he has a really bright future. He is a very intelligent boy and having the opportunity to meet him is great. My family is quite close to yours. “
Johnson was a five-star in 2020 ranked as the No. 9 player and the best offensive tackle in the nation. Getting high praise from other elite soccer players is nothing new for a player like him, especially when you’re expected to be the next Orlando Pace.
Montgomery may be on the same path.
The 2023 recruiting class does not yet have a composite ranking of 247Sports, and very few even have an individual player ranking. Usually that’s not the norm at the moment, but COVID-19 has eliminated most of the chances of players being tested in person.
But what is clear is that when the early signing period rolls around in December 2022, there is a chance that Montgomery will receive the same treatment that Johnson received.
“When I go into the field, I go to your head,” Montgomery said. “I am not going to take a step back. I’m just a different person than I am in real life. It’s just a different mindset when I’m on the field. “
Montgomery’s offer is a significant step as the Buckeyes venture into the 2023 hiring cycle. Every class needs a starting point, a player who combines all the aspects that you hope the class is and can serve as the Unofficial “captain” of the group, uniting the class on social media and for in-person events.
In Ryan Day’s first two full classes, those players have been Pickerington North defensive end Jack Sawyer (2021) and Archbishop Alter linebacker CJ Hicks near Dayton (2022).
Sawyer was a five-star defensive end recruit considered one of the top five players in the country. Hicks is a top 50 recruit who tends to go from four stars to five stars. They both have outgoing personalities and, in their own way, helped Ohio State form elite classes. Sawyer helped put the 2021 class in position to battle Alabama for top spot while reeling in a group with an average star rating of 94.52. Hicks and the 2022 class are already on track to surpass the 2022 class, with a 10-man group at 96.17.
Montgomery combines those same traits along with the most important detail: He is an Ohio boy just like everyone else. That detail is why Sawyer was willing to choose OSU without hesitation nearly two years before Signing Day. Hicks did the same the following year. Both decisions allowed classes to grow in both quantity and quality.
That paper for 2023 is available if you want it for the kid whose home is a 98-minute drive from the Ohio State campus.
“I definitely want to be a leader for my team,” Montgomery said. “I am a very sociable child. I would assume you could say that. “
Montgomery is in no rush to commit anywhere, but if you choose OSU, it is with the understanding that you will be assigned the same responsibility.
“I think they kind of do it,” Montgomery said when asked if he thinks Ohio State sees him in that role.
“But they also respect my opinions and my time with this. I feel like this moment is obviously not that critical yet, so I don’t need to make a decision. But I guess they want me to make a decision before my senior year, and that’s okay with me because I plan to be engaged somewhere. “
Ohio State’s goal with each cycle is to create the best possible class that also fits your culture. In the first full cycles of Day, that resulted in a No. 2 class in 2021 and a 2022 class that currently has a significant lead for first place heading into spring. Repeating that success in 2023 means finding the perfect shade maker to ensure the standard continues.
Meet Luke Montgomery, aka the potential five-star leader of the class.
“We’ll see how it goes,” Montgomery said. “Obviously, they don’t want me to rush and commit now. No school wants me to do that. I want to take my time and go out to see some places before making a decision. “
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