The Ohio State Buckeyes completed the 2012 regular season with a 12-0 record, but are ineligible for the postseason obviously due to NCAA sanctions.
But despite the early ending to the season, Ohio State does gain an advantage in not being able to play in a bowl despite being undefeated. That advantage is the ability to recruit freely during the next few months while other teams prepare for their bowl games.
OSU's coaches have already hit the road this week, per their respective Twitter accounts:
Headed out for more great recruiting. Philly, New Jersey, Houston, Beaumont, and Cincy this week.— Kerry Coombs (@OsuCoachCoombs) December 3, 2012
The Buckeyes pulled together an outstanding recruiting class in 2012 and are on the way to doing it once again this year, with a class that is now No. 7 on Rivals.com's team rankings. The Buckeyes have 17 verbal commits, but they are after quite a few high-profile recruits to round out an outstanding class.
No bowl practices will allow Ohio State to go all across the map during the current contact period that extends until December 15.
Two days later, the dead period in recruiting begins as is customary during the bowl season where schools may only call a prospect once a week. In other words, OSU has about 12 days to get in touch with as many recruits for this year as possible.
It also means that OSU can still work on recruits in the 2014 class, for which they do not have a verbal commit at this time.
Ohio State has three more scholarships available, but it could have more depending on whether or not draft-eligible players Johnathan Hankins and Bradley Roby decide to declare for the NFL draft.
Tyquan Lewis was the last verbal for Ohio State back on Sept. 20, which means it's been about three months since Buckeyes fans have had any big news about recruiting as far as additions go. All that can change in these next few weeks leading up to the Under Armour and Army All-American Games early in January.
If Ohio State isn't able to get big-time recruits like James Quick, Mike Mitchell or Vonn Bell, it certainly won't be because of lack of effort from the Buckeyes coaches.
Not having a bowl will allow the OSU coaches to exert their full efforts on recruiting. As much as the players and coaches would love to be in a BCS bowl next month, they will have to settle for the silver lining of going full throttle in recruiting.
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