Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer has never hidden his passionate and intense feelings about the importance of recruiting. Junior Days, Friday Night Lights, summer football camps, and recruiting weekends are all relentlessly used by Meyer, with the continual focus upon doing whatever is possible to bring the best talent to Columbus.
While Meyer may have described his 2016 recruiting class as lacking drama; it certainly is not lacking in talent per recruiting analysts' estimates. Below are five quick thoughts on the players who will be donning the scarlet and gray, beginning with the 2016 college football season.
1. Ohio Remained The Focus
Out of 25 players signed, 10 are from the Buckeye State. Ohio State was able to sign most of the top players in the state, losing a few to other top programs around the country. The most notable defection is Cleveland Benedictine WR Justin Layne, who chose to sign with Michigan State. The point? If Meyer and his staff truly want a player from Ohio, chances are strong that the Buckeyes will be able to land him.
2. Gold Is Where You Find It
Ohio State concentrated upon Ohio, but was certainly willing to expand its geographic footprint to land top talent from around the country. Top players from Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, and North Carolina were all willing to leave the familiarity of home, and local programs, to sign with the Buckeyes.
3. Urban Meyer Can Close
Most of Ohio State's recruiting class was secured prior to National Signing Day, with seven of the recruits already enrolled on campus as of January. Ohio State was able to land two top players early Wednesday, showing that Meyer truly believes nothing is final until the player has signed on the dotted line of his Letter of Intent.
4. Several Position Groups Were Replenished
With so many underclassmen declaring for the NFL draft, as well as many seniors exhausting their eligibility, many position groups were definite needs for the Buckeyes. Ohio State has lost TE Nick Vannett, but was able to sign three highly touted prospects at the position. Ohio State has lost three starting offensive linemen in Taylor Decker, Chase Farris, and Jacoby Boren, but were able to sign a crop of five players to replenish the depth chart.
5. Defensive Tackle Will Be A Focus For 2017
While able to restock several position groups, defensive tackle seems to be the one position group where Ohio State was not able to land many players, signing only one with this class. It would seem likely that defensive tackle will be the priority position for Meyer and his coaching staff heading into the 2017 recruiting cycle.
— Written by Chip Minnich, who is part of the Athlon Contributor Network and a diehard Ohio State fan. Minnich also writes and podcasts for menofthescarletandgray.com, a site dedicated to Ohio sports with a special emphasis on the Buckeyes. Follow him on Twitter @ChipMinnich.