We are less than 24 hours away from National Signing Day, and there is still some drama to play out for the Buckeyes. While the 2012 class is very loaded, the staff is still looking at a handful of prospects to fill needs. Ideally, they would close things out by grabbing one more offensive tackle and wide receiver/playmaker. Any other commitments on top of those two positions would just be icing on the cake.
Currently the '12 class has 23 total commitments, as Roger Lewis will not sign with Ohio State tomorrow due to academic issues. The Buckeyes sit right on the 82 scholarship line, and further attrition will have to happen with several more players expected to jump on board when the dust settles.
So who will those players be? Well let's take a look at who's left and where I expect them to announce. My last set of predictions were spot on, and I guess we'll see if I keep batting a high percentage in the prediction game.
OL Kyle Dodson - The Cleveland Heights offensive tackle is scheduled to announce his decision tomorrow. He was originally committed to Wisconsin, but began wavering in that commitment back in November and has been looking around. Things are down to Wisconsin, Ohio State, Michigan State, and USC.
There has been lots of rumblings that the Trojans might come out of nowhere and steal Dodson at the last second, much like they did with Aundrey Walker from Glenville High School last year. Still, it's hard to bet against the Buckeyes. Dodson was on campus this last weekend for an official visit, which has to be a good sign several days before his announcement. I also envision him wanting to stay closer to home in the end. Prediction: Ohio State
He is announcing his decision tomorrow morning at 10:30 a.m. at his high school, and will pick between Ohio State and East Carolina. My guess is that he will end up staying closer to home, though Meyer's influence and sway make this an interesting announcement. Prediction: East Carolina
DB Bam Bradley - The recruitment of Bradley really has been a confusing mess. Over the last several months he has seemed so personally confused it's been practically impossible to figure out where he might land. He delayed his announcement early in January at the Semper Fidelis All-American Bowl, and at that time I thought that played into the Buckeyes' hands. Since then, though, he has seemed to be more enthralled with schools beyond the Ohio boarders. Even the announcement of teammate Cam Burrows has very little effect on his ultimate decision.
He was down to Stanford, Pittsburgh and Ohio State, before learning that he didn't get accepted at Stanford. Now it's down to OSU and Pitt, but I still see the Buckeyes striking out here like they did with Demetrious Cox. Prediction: Pittsburgh
ATH Stefon Diggs - Just over a week ago Diggs seemed like a pipe dream. He consistently claimed to be interested in the Buckeyes, but things never seemed to be heating up. Well that changed as Meyer and the staff were able to get him on campus this last weekend. In fact, the visit seemed to have "confused" Diggs on where to go and has delayed his announcement.
Currently he is down to Auburn, California, Florida, Maryland and Ohio State. The staff has a lot of ground to make up for the Maryland product, especially against two SEC powers in Florida and Auburn that have been the perceived favorites for some time now. While again, Meyer shouldn't be counted out, I'm not sure he has enough time to make up that ground. Prediction: Florida
WR Davonte Neal - Neal, who is from Scottsdale, AZ, was on campus a couple of weekends back. At that time it appeared that the Buckeyes were in the driver's seat and that former Ohio native would be coming back home. Things have quickly changed though, and it's hard to get a feel where things sit for Neal.
He's down to Notre Dame, Arizona, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Ohio State, and there is lots of speculation that this will be a Buckeye-Wildcat battle in the end. While that would seem like a good thing, Neal and his father have lots of connections to Arizona and new coach Rich Rodriguez. I think that wins out in the end. Prediction: Arizona
WR Joel Caleb - Caleb visited the Buckeyes in early December and walked away from his visit almost ready to commit. Since then, though, things have cooled. There were rumors that the staff slow played him, while others claimed his visit to Virginia Tech the following weekend made him put his visit to Columbus in perspective. Regardless, it doesn't appear that he will be in this class. He's down to Virginia Tech, Ohio State and West Virginia, and unless the staff starts chasing him again I think he ends up a Hokie. Prediction: Virginia Tech
So there you have the six guys left on the board. You'll notice the absence of names like Jordan Diamond, Dalton Santos, Joe Jackson and Reggie Northrup. They will be heading elsewhere. The list could expand, especially at wide receiver if Diggs, Neal and Caleb do end up other places. Outside of that, though, things are officially winding down in 2012.
Make sure to keep an eye out for the next Recruiting Rundown when I take a deeper look at the 2013 class.