Ohio State’s class of 2011 football recruits are set to report to Columbus on Sunday, but it's safe to say Ejuan Price will not be with the rest of the group.
The linebacker from Pittsburgh Woodland Hills said after the Big 33 Classic on Saturday night in Hershey, Pa., that he has been released from his scholarship by Ohio State.
“Yes, sir,” he said when asked if the release had been granted. “They were waiting for Friday so it wouldn’t cause a tumble effect or whatever. That came and went. All I need are the papers now and I’ll be good to go.”
When asked Saturday night, an Ohio State spokesman could confirm only that Price had asked for his release, not that it had been granted.
Price, a four-star prospect according to Scout.com and the No. 14 middle linebacker prospect in his class, said he plans to pick up the release papers Monday.
Speaking after Pennsylvania’s 50-14 loss to Ohio in the annual high school all-star game, Price said the recent scandal at Ohio State – including the Memorial Day resignation of head coach Jim Tressel – wasn’t what caused him to change his mind. Quiet throughout much of the recruiting process before picking OSU in January, Price said he was never fully sold on the Buckeyes despite his choice.
“It had nothing to do with the allegations,” he said. “I know what kind of people they are. Everybody makes mistakes, but that’s just not where my heart is. I don’t think that’s where I wanted to go in the first place. They’re still good people whether all of that stuff happened or not. Coach Tressel is still a good guy. They’re still all right with me.”
Price (6-0, 235), who picked Ohio State over Iowa and Rutgers when he made his final choice, said he is likely going to play his college football in his hometown.
“I got some late interest from a couple of schools, but it looks like I’ll probably end up at Pittsburgh,” he said.
Ohio State’s recruiting class, which was ranked third in the country on signing day, appears to be dropping to 23 members. Seven enrolled early and took part in spring practice while 15 more are due to arrive tomorrow with classes starting Monday. Quarterback Cardale Jones of Cleveland Glenville will take a grayshirt and play at Fork Union Military Academy this fall.