Finding the right fit for your college football program is not just about what happens in the field, but also about what happens. Today, Ohio State added a key piece. How will that commitment affect the Buckeyes?
Ohio State got the commitment of one of the top prospects in the Midwest on Friday night when three-star athlete Craig Young of Fort Wayne, Indiana, pledged his services to the Buckeyes just three days after an impressive performance in the camp.
Let's take a closer look at what Young – the No. 685 prospect in general in the Clbad of 2019 – brings to Columbus.
IN THE FIELD
The 6-foot-4, 212-pound young man is an athlete in every sense of the word.
He caught 29 catches for 367 yards and four touchdowns; ran for 255 yards and two scores; and recorded 27 tackles, three interceptions, 2.5 tackles for a loss and 1.5 sacks in defense to take the Generals to the national playoff selection round last season. He also averaged 17.4 points, 7.5 rebounds and 1.6 badists in hardwood to help Wayne to the state basketball semifinals and finished third in the state athletic championships with a 10.58-second 100-meter run.
But if you ask Young's personal trainer and 7-a-7 coach, it's his attitude off the field that is his most redeeming quality.
"The greatest strength that Craig has is his high level of humility," said AWP Sports athletic development director Dre Muhammad, Eleven Warriors . "He's one of the humblest players I've ever seen, outside [Ohio State wide receiver and fellow Fort Wayne native] Austin Mack." Craig and Austin are very similar in their humility and want to grow and learn.
"Two, he has the desire to see the people around him improve, he knows he has all these skills, but he wants the people around him to be even more successful." He takes pride in that. he is as grateful as they come, he is respectful, he cares and he does not take anything for granted. "
On the field, Young is possibly one of the most athletic players that Muhammad has ever worked with. That includes Dallas Cowboys linebacker Jaylon Smith, Cincinnati Bengals tight end Tyler Eifert and the aforementioned Mack.
"We are all aware of how explosive and athletic he is, he is a stale guy," Muhammad said. "I think he can play any position as long as he stays focused on one of them, his versatility is what really separates him, Jaylon and Craig are just two exceptional athletes in that regard."
Young has spent most of his career in high school with the idea that he would play as a wide receiver at the next level, so his ranking reflects his skills in that position.
"The wide receiver takes much longer to develop than an instinctive position or a reactionary position," Muhammad said. "In my humble opinion, Craig is the best player in the country in defense, he is more natural [at that position] .If he concentrated on him, he would be the number one player in the country."
The Buckeyes may be the only program that recruits Young for the defensive side of the ball, so there will be a small learning curve and a physical transformation needed in the next few years as he becomes defensive or defensive end. Everything else should come naturally.
IN THE CLASS
Young becomes the eleventh member of Ohio State's Dynasty & # 39; Recruitment clbad, joins four-star Steele Chambers of Georgia and Ronnie Hickman of four-star New Jersey as commitments with the designation of athlete, although it is configured to play against the runner and safety, respectively, in the next level.
On the other hand, the Buckeyes will have a lot of work to do when it comes to finding out where Young fits into the equation. And that will undoubtedly have an impact on the number of defenders or supporters who advance.
The Buckeyes already have commitments in both positions from Lexington's four-star outside linebacker, Cade Stover, and Mentor's four-star defensive end Noah Potter, who also worked at Tuesday's camp. The first one could also become a defensive end if he continues to mature physically.
I do not think staff will label Young one way or another until he gets to campus, like the earliest. Doing so could affect the search of the staff for a series of objectives in each position, particularly the linebacker. Buckeyes remain among the best schools for Rian Davis, four-star Florida, Lance Dixon four-star Michigan and Kane Patterson four-star Tennessee, and Young's commitment as linebacker could influence their feelings towards the program.
The defensive end is a bit drier, however. Oletangy Orange, five stars, Zach Harrison is the main objective of the state of Ohio, regardless of his position, and does not worry about the competition he may face in the university. The staff is not seriously considering any other player in the position at this time.
All that said, a combination of Harrison, Potter, Stover and Young along the defensive front seven would be a big draw for the Buckeyes.
Stop if you've heard this story before: A seemingly positionless prospect appears at Ohio State's one-day camp to prove his worth to the staff and commits soon after.
That's because Young's path to becoming a Buckeye is somewhat reminiscent of former linebacker Darron Lee, who played quarterback, wide receiver, defensive and kick returner and was a star of the track at New Albany He got a scholarship after not one, but two impressive camp performances in the summer of 2012.
Like Young, Lee did not seem to have a place in the 2013 Ohio State recruiting clbad. The Buckeyes already had a commitment from Field Marshal J.T. Barrett and the defensive endorse Eli Apple, Cam Burrow and Jayme Thompson. Include the rascal's athlete, Jalin Marshall, and it was hard to see how Lee fit into the staff's plans.
Ohio State initially recruited Young as the wide receiver, but the team has several more prospects ahead of them in the priority table, even though the Buckeyes are looking to add four more receivers to complement the five-star Garrett Wilson in this cycle . They also looked briefly at the tight end, but the position is not of great need.
The versatility, size and general athleticism of Lee, as well as his determination and willingness to learn, made him a perfect candidate to be developed in a position he had never played. And the similarities for Young are amazing.