Earlier I mentioned the possibility of Aundre Dean of Katy, TX joining the 2008 class in lieu of DeVoe Torrence, though I wasn’t optimistic nor was I even certain of his scholarship offer. Today, Dean made it official by recommitting to UCLA ($). Granted, the Buckeye scoop on Dean was limited since Tressel made an explicit offer to Torrence not to pursue another tailback, and by time the Torrence issue became final, Buckeye recruitniks were well out of the loop. For what it’s worth, apparently luring Norm Chow to coach the offense was enough to get Aundre Dean back in the fold. We hold no grudges here, so best of luck to the kid.
Of course, as every recruitnik could tell you, tailback now becomes priority one for the 2009 Buckeye class. Wil (in the comments in the DeVoe thread) thinks Bryce Brown is Miami (FL) bound to follow his brother. Indeed, Miami (FL) is the only school to offer him1, though at this stage I doubt that means the Canes are the leader. I remain optimistic. The mission critical nature of the tailback situation makes for an easier recruiting pitch, having the privilege to play behind our incoming offensive line is a pitch by itself, and I think Tressel and the Buckeyes can recruit quality players with the best of them. Moreover, Brown has expressed interest in coming to the Midwest for summer camps, specifically showing interest in coming to Ohio State according to the BP recruitniks (and those guys are usually on the ball with their info, as they have the premium accounts and such). I think Tressel can make a pretty good pitch with this one. I definitely won’t go so far as to say that he’s a lock for the Bucks, and I definitely hate predictions since it’s glorified unscientific guessing, but I think we could be in his top 5 (maybe 3).
In other recruiting news, as seen in the ourhonor.del.icio.us feed, the Bucks lost a recruit to Michigan State. In my opinion, we lost a pretty good one, and a recruit whose image just screams of “Buckeye”. Steve Gardiner of Dublin Coffman — same HS as The Way, The Truth and The Light and Jake Stoneburner — had a grayshirt offer from Ohio State, the school he grew up idolizing. He took visits to Northwestern and Pitt, among a few other places, before settling on the Spartans. I don’t know what position Dantonio thinks he’ll play, but it seems that OSU wanted him at linebacker, and thus wanted him to take the extra time to put on more weight and become a better linebacker (apparently he was a defensive back in HS, and where I think he could’ve been best for the Bucks). The issue came down to how bad he wanted to fulfill his dreams and become a Buckeye, and the grayshirt stipulations for him were, understandably, too much. I feel for him, since you hate to see someone’s dreams of becoming a Buckeye dashed every bit as how good you feel for a kid like Zach Domicone getting the opportunity to live his dream. It’s a shame, but again, a guy like Steve is getting a good opportunity, so we wish him well… except on the head-to-head matchups, of course.
- Some confusion here: Bucknuts says he doesn’t have a Buckeye offer; Buckeyeplanet says he does [↩]