Ohio State Football Recruiting: Buckeyes Bring in Strong Class Under Urban Meyer
National signing day was a success for several teams. But for Urban Meyer and the Ohio State Buckeyes, it was just another day on the road to another top recruiting class.
When comparing this year to Meyer's past classes for the Buckeyes, coming in at No. 3 in the 247Sports Composite Team Rankings might actually seem like a letdown—the third-year coach came in at No. 2 in the 2013 rankings for 247Sports.
Meyer believes the great classes aren't just a byproduct of his coaching staff but also the fact that the Buckeyes are a historically great program, according to Bruce Feldman of CBS Sports.
"It's a credit to the brand of Ohio State," Meyer said. "That's not just it because our coaching staff is about relationships, but everyone knows Ohio State."
Apart from the dominant classes that Alabama consistently recruits, the Ohio State coaching staff's ability to bring in strong players year after year makes them one of the most impressive in the country.
With national signing day officially coming to a close, here is a look at the entire Ohio State recruiting class and a few of the best players in the haul for Meyer.
Raekwon McMillan, ILB
The simple fact that the Buckeyes were able to sign Raekwon McMillan, a 5-star athlete according to 247Sports, is a testament to their recruiting abilities.
But the impressive part of this signing is that he was pulled out of Atlanta, also known as SEC country. Meyer and his staff were able to get a commitment from a player who was heavily recruited by the likes of Alabama and Auburn along with both Georgia and Georgia Tech, the latter two schools inside his home state.
Meyer spoke about the linebacker group he's bringing in and put a little extra pressure on McMillan and others, according to Feldman:
The linebackers have to become good players. You never know until they develop. The linebacker position here at Ohio State is just hard to believe what's happened. It's just not what you would expect. We have some good players but not near the depth we need and it's been going on for the last four years here and that has to get fixed like now.
With McMillan already enrolled at Ohio State and signed early to the Buckeyes, his commitment was hardly a surprise on national signing day.
But with the 5-star linebacker bringing a physical presence to the defense—likely in his first year after Ryan Shazier's departure—his signing is a huge one for the Buckeyes.
Damon Webb, CB
Staying on the defensive side of the ball, Meyer got another huge commitment out of Damon Webb, a 4-star player and the fifth-best cornerback according to 247Sports.
Webb was one of the players presumed to be going to Ohio State all along, but made things official by committing on national signing day.
When asked about his intentions for Webb and a few other recruits, Meyer made it pretty clear what he plans to do with them, according to Rob Ogden of the Ozone:
Urban Meyer on DB's Erick Smith, Marshon Lattimore and Damon Webb. "They're not redshirting, they're playing right now."— Rob Ogden (@Rob_Ogden) February 5, 2014
That might have played a large part in Webb's commitment, as all high school players want the chance to prove themselves right away in college. With the redshirt tag possibilities out of the way, Webb will get a chance to do just that with Ohio State.
Johnnie Dixon, WR
The Buckeyes needed to improve at several defensive positions, but they certainly didn't fall off on the offensive side this year.
With the signing of Johnnie Dixon, a U.S. Army All-American wide receiver, Meyer showed that he is committed to bringing in top talent on the offensive side as well.
Dixon's commitment also proves that Meyer still has strong ties in his old stomping grounds in Florida. The Palm Beach Gardens native committed early to the Buckeyes on Dec. 17 and followed that up by enrolling for the spring semester.
As for the change in conditions going from Florida to Ohio, Dixon said it's all part of his preparation for the next level, according to Kyle Rowland of Eleven Warriors:
Johnnie Dixon, a native of South Florida, on Ohio's cold weather: “Once you make it to the NFL, you play in all types of weather anyway.”— Kyle Rowland (@KyleRowland) February 6, 2014
With Dixon joining several strong defensive recruits and a plethora of other offensive commits for the Buckeyes, the 2014 class is yet another in a long line of sparkling classes for Meyer and his coaching staff.
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