After a huge month of June recruiting-wise, the month of July got off with a bang as Urban Meyer and his coaching staff picked up two big-time verbal commitments as both Justin Hilliard and Jashon Cornell pledged their allegiance to Buckeye Nation on Wednesday.
Hilliard, a 6-foot-2, 230-pound outside linebacker from St. Xavier High School in Cincinnati, pulled on a scarlet Ohio State cap and made the announcement in front of his family, friends, teammates, media and an ESPN.com audience at St. X.
After narrowing his college choices down to five, Hilliard picked the Buckeyes over Alabama, Iowa, Michigan, and Notre Dame.
Hilliard garners a five-star rating from 247Sports.com and is ranked as the top outside linebacker prospects in the nation by that website.
Limited to just seven games his junior year due to injury, Hilliard had 76 tackles, seven tackles for a loss, four sacks, and an interception.
Just minutes after Hilliard made his announcement in the Queen City, Cornell did so in similar fashion at his high school in the Twin Cities.
Cornell, a 6-foot-4, 260-pound defensive end from Cretin-Derham Hall High School in St. Paul, Minn., is a five-star recruit by 247Sports and is ranked as the No. 5 weakside defensive end in the country.
After receiving more than 30 scholarship offers from the top programs around the country, Cornell narrowed his list of finalists to five that included Ohio State, Notre Dame, Iowa, Penn State and Michigan State.
Hilliard and Cornell join Kevin Feder, Denzel Ward, Nick Connor, Dre’Mont Jones, Liam McCullough, Grant Schmidt, Tyler Green, Joe Burrow, Jamel Dean and Eric Glover-Williams as the 11 recruits for the 2015 class so far.
Feder, a 6-foot-9, 305-pound offensive tackle from Don Bosco Prep in Ramsey, N.J., is a three-star recruit by the three major recruiting websites. Scout.com lists him as the 49th-best OT prospect in the nation, while Rivals.com has him one spot higher at No. 50.
Feder, who originally committed to Miami (Fla.) back in January, also had offers from Maryland, Michigan State, Rutgers, Syracuse and Tennessee.
Ward, a 5-foot-11, 165-pound cornerback from Nordonia High School in Macedonia, Ohio, is a three-star recruit by 247Sports.com and is ranked as the No. 38 cornerback in the nation by that recruiting website.
Including Ohio State, Ward had offers from Cincinnati, Indiana, Kentucky, Rutgers, Syracuse, Washington State and several others.
Connor, a 6-foot-3, 225-pound linebacker from Scioto High School in Dublin, Ohio, is currently rated a four-star prospect by the three major recruiting websites. 247Sports.com lists Conner as the fifth-best inside linebacker in the country, while Rivals.com tabs him at No. 8 in the nation. Scout.com has Connor No. 13 among all outside linebackers in the land.
Along with Ohio State, Connor also had offers from Boston College, Cincinnati, Duke, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Michigan State, Minnesota, N.C. State, Ole Miss, Oregon, Pittsburgh, Syracuse, Vanderbilt, Virginia Tech and West Virginia.
Jones, a 6-foot-5, 250-pound defensive end from St. Ignatius High School in Cleveland, Ohio, is also a four-star recruit by 247Sports and Scout. 247Sports has Jones as the No. 8 strongside defensive end nationally, and Scout lists him No. 23 among all defensive ends in the country.
Including Ohio State, Jones also had offers from Cincinnati, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Michigan, Michigan State and Notre Dame.
McCullough stands 6-foot-2, weighs 230 pounds, and attends Worthington Kilbourne High School in Columbus. McCullough is a two-star prospect and is the top-rated long snapper in the country by 247Sports, though there’s just four on that list. He also had offers from Kentucky, Michigan State and Wisconsin.
Schmidt was in camp at Ohio State two weekends ago before making an unofficial visit touring the campus and meeting with Meyer in his office. An offensive tackle standing 6-foot-6 and weighing in at 275 pounds, Schmidt attends Roosevelt High School in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. He’s the first native South Dakotan to earn a football scholarship at Ohio State.
Schmidt currently receives a four-star rating from Rivals.com and 247Sports.com. Rivals lists Schmidt as the 22nd-best offensive tackle in the country, while 247Sports tabs him No. 29 at OT.
Including Ohio State, Schmidt also had offers from Cincinnati, Iowa State, Minnesota, North Carolina, Rutgers, Utah, Washington State and Wyoming, among others.
Green pledged when he picked up a Ohio State offer following football camp in Columbus this past weekend and announced it on Twitter on Sunday. A 6-foot-3, 195-pound defensive back from Dematha Catholic High School in Hyattsville, Maryland, Green currently receives a four-star rating from 247Sports.com and three stars from Rivals.com and Scout.com. 247Sports lists Green as the 11th-best safety in the country, while Rivals tabs him No. 18 at that position.
Along with Ohio State, Green also had offers from Indiana, Maryland, North Carolina State and Virginia, among others.
Burrow, a 6-foot-4, 205-pound quarterback from The Plains, Ohio, who attends Athens High School, currently receives a four-star rating from both 247Sports.com and Scout.com. 247Sports lists Burrow as the tenth-best dual-threat quarterback in the country, while Scout tabs him No. 25 among all signal-callers in the nation.
Plus Ohio State, Burrow had offers from Boston College, Cincinnati, East Carolina, Fresno State, Iowa State, Kentucky, Maryland, Minnesota, North Carolina State, Vanderbilt, Virginia Tech and West Virginia, among others.
Dean, a 6-foot-1, 180-pound cornerback from Cocoa High School in Cocoa, Fla., currently receives a four-star rating and is ranked as the 20th-best cornerback prospect in the nation by 247Sports.com.
Along with Ohio State, Dean also had offers from Florida, Miami (Fla.), Mississippi State and Temple.
Dean attended Ohio State’s Friday Night Lights camp in July, and made an unofficial visit to watch the Penn State game in Columbus on Oct. 26.
Glover-Williams, nicknamed “Superman,” is a 5-foot-11, 165-pound athlete/running back/cornerback from McKinley High School in Canton, Ohio, who currently receives a four-star rating by Scout.com and 247Sports.com. Scout lists Glover-Williams as the 13th-best running back prospect in the nation, and 247Sports tabs him at No. 8 among all cornerbacks in the country.
Including with Ohio State, Glover-Williams also had offers from Arkansas, Cincinnati, Illinois, Kentucky, Michigan State, Nebraska, Pittsburgh, Tennessee and West Virginia.