21 June 2011
I am a big fan of the Fourth of July. Christmas, News Years Day (but not this coming News Years Day as there is not a single bowl game on), and the Fourth of July. Those are my favorite holidays. I have been happy about way Luke Fickell has gotten some verbals from several great looking players since he took over. An interim coach should not get players of this quality. Most don't get any at all. Fickell has added quality football players. Kyle Kalis is obviously the biggest recruit Fickell has landed. Yes, I say landed because the kid called to de-commit. For all intents and purposes that is a recruiting win for Fickell. At the time that call was made Kalis was not a Buckeye. The problem is, the other big names in the class that the Buckeyes have offered are committing elsewhere. Tom Strobel got the ball rolling with a verbal to Michigan. Kyle Dodson was offered on the very day it appears he was
set to announce for Wisconsin. The biggest bad news came on Sunday. Se'Von Pittman committed to Michigan State. Huge loss in my mind. Today we learn that Kalis is going to visit Michigan. This is not on Fickell. This is the instability in the coaching situation. The word "interim" is going to have a dramatic effect on this recruiting class. Someone tell me why it was important to force JT to resign now? If we wait until after August 12 we could have stayed in the game on some of these recruits. It would have been so much closer to the season that they could have seen a Luke Fickell coached team in action right away and gotten excited about the program all over again. If there was going to be a coaching change it would have been okay. Naming an interim coach makes no sense. The powers that be left months more interim than was needed. Months for other programs to point out the fact that there is no coach at Ohio State. The recent verbals were not contentious recruits. Pittman would have been a Buckeye. I think Dodson was always a Buckeye lean until the staff started to stall. Strobel is one I can only go on rumor about. The buzz is Strobel would have been a Buckeye. There is a report out now that Urban Meyer will not come back to Ohio State, that he will not leave the warm weather part of the country period. You already know where I am headed. Is there anyone out there other than Meyer who is so appealing that the powers that be want to wait on him? Don't say Gruden. He is not currently employed as a football coach. There is nothing to keep him from getting the job right now if he was a target coach. I don't believe it anyway. I don't think he wants to be a college football coach. Does anybody you are confident would be on the short list at the end of the season be so much more a great get than Fickell? Some want to dismiss the Meyer report. I think it is solid. Without Meyer on the board, hiring Fickell right now is making more sense. The best class that I have ever seen in Ohio is coming apart. The best defensive line class that we will ever see is being chipped away at. A couple more defections and it is lost. Some want to say that there are so many good linemen in the state that the loss of Pittman is not that big a deal. Yes, it is. He was elite. As many really good linemen as there are in state this year, there are five difference makers. Five that are a cut above. Five who you want no matter what. Pittman was one. Chris Wormley is another, and no doubt a Michigan lean. That instate depth that some are pointing to is not what it was when we first started talking about this class as that next tier of Big Five caliber recruits are also committing. Pharaoh Brown and Tom Strobel to Michigan. Evan Jones to Michigan State. Right now it is still very salvageable. Jim Tressel was fired on Memorial Day. Se'Von Pittman committed to Michigan State on Father's Day. The next holiday is the Fourth of July. I think I am staying in bed.