Urban Meyer has talked about adding game-breaking skill players ever since becoming the head coach at Ohio State, but with National Signing Day mere hours away, there is still plenty of intrigue when it comes to the Buckeyes' targets at running back and receiver.
The Washington Post created a bit of a stir Tuesday afternoon when it reported three-star wide receiver Taivon Jacobs, an OSU commit since July, will decide between the Buckeyes and Maryland tomorrow.
According to the paper, there are many reasons for Jacobs – who played his prep ball at Forestville (Md.) Suitland, just outside of Washington, D.C. – to consider staying home. Not only does he have a 1-year-old daughter, he plans to run track in college. Maryland announced it was cutting its track program over the summer before reinstituting it recently after joining the Big Ten.
“I’ve discussed it over with my family,” Jacobs told the Post. “I want to make the best choice for me. I have a child. I want to make sure I’m a great father and a great player.”
Since that story went live, Jacobs has texted Scout reporter Kristen Kenney to tell her that he will announce tomorrow at 10 a.m. and "doesn't know" if Maryland has a legitimate shot.
Jacobs (5-10, 160) was a bit of an unknown when he committed to OSU over the summer, but he camped in Columbus and boasts elite speed.
“I’m happy to be a Buckeye,” he told BuckeyeSports.com at the time when he chose OSU over Maryland and West Virginia. “It wasn’t an easy decision. It came down to what I liked about each school and what I didn’t like, but I had to pick one school at the end of the day and I chose the school that was the best fit for me, and I believe that’s Ohio State. The way they run their offense, the way Urban Meyer runs his offense, I believe that’s a great fit for me.”
Ohio State also has to deal with some uncertainty with four-star running back Ezekiel Elliott of St. Louis John Burroughs. Elliott committed to Ohio State during the spring, but he took a recent official visit to Missouri – the alma mater of his parents – and has declined interviews in recent days. He is the top player in his state.
The Buckeyes remain in the running for Scout’s 30th-ranked wideout, James Clark of New Smyrna Beach, Fla. A four-star prospect, Clark will decide between Clemson, Florida and Ohio State at 9 a.m. Wednesday.
Bill Greene has the scoop on both Clark and Elliott in yesterday’s Bank Blog.
Four-star running back Cornelius Elder also has announced he will not make his decision on National Signing Day. Elder has taken an official visit to OSU along with Auburn, Georgia Tech and UCLA.
Some things have become clear in the past few days, though. The Buckeyes picked up a commitment from running back Dontre Wilson on Monday night. The No. 10 RB in the country, the DeSoto, Texas, native runs a 4.4 40 and is the ninth-ranked player in his state.
Meanwhile, two out-of-state wideouts – Kentucky’s Ryan Timmons and California’s Darren Carrington – have chosen the past few days to attend Kentucky and Oregon, respectively. OSU had some interest in Timmons throughout the recruiting process while Carrington appeared on the picture when Oregon head coach Chip Kelly left only to cancel a proposed visit to OSU.
OSU also has verbal commitments from five-star wideout Jalin Marshall of Middletown and four-star JUCO WR Corey Smith, who originally hails from Akron.