The Ohio State Football team received a boost to their 2013 recruiting class when 4-star outside linebacker Mike Mitchell from Prestonwood Christian Academy committed to the Buckeyes during the U.S. Army All-American Bowl.
Mitchell is the 21st commit to the Buckeyes class and gives Ohio State 14 total 4-star players in their class. The 6'5", 220-pound linebacker from Plano, Texas, said he chose the Buckeyes over Texas A&M and Florida State because that is where he felt the most comfortable.
"I just felt the most comfortable there," Mitchell said. "I love all three of those schools, they have great coaches and are great program, so you couldn't go wrong. After I visited there, I just narrowed it down to where do I fit in the best, and where I want to live for the next four years."
Mitchell said he likes to pattern his game after James Harrison of the Pittsburgh Steelers.
"I love James Harrison of the Steelers, and Dick Butkus, old school linebackers. I love those guys who play rough. Those are my two favorites and I try to play like them."
The play of East running back Derrick Green from Hermitage High School in Richmond, Virginia, impressed Mitchell.
"Derrick Green was one of the best running backs I have ever played against," Mitchell said. "He runs hard, keeps his feet under him. He is really fast and tough guy."
Mitchell is the second linebacker commit of the Buckeyes class. He should compete for playing time immediately in Columbus. While the Big Ten is known for plodding football teams, head coach Urban Meyer is trying to change that perception at Ohio State.
Meyer has always emphasized speed above all else in recruiting, and Mitchell fits that mold. He is an athletic freak of nature with 4.39 speed in the 40 in an outside linebacker's body. He graded out as the best athlete in the nation at a combine in the summer where they measured speed, power and agility in relation to size.
Mitchell should have an immediate impact for an Ohio State program that was looking for immediate help at the linebacker position. Expect him to play as a true freshman in the fall.
Unless otherwise noted, all quotes in this article were obtained in interviews by the writer.