Ohio State is in recruiting news again.
The Buckeyes kick off the 2013 season against Buffalo on August 31. Two months seems so far away. But the tidbits coming out of precocious teenagers' mouths regarding interactions with head coach Urban Meyer have spiced up the offseason considerably.
Bleacher Report's Andrew Kulha interviewed Miami (Fla) commit Kc McDermott in June. McDermott is ranked as the third-best offensive tackle in the class of 2014. Meyer visited with McDermott and reportedly offered him a scholarship. McDermott described Meyer's reaction when the 5-star prospect declined.
He came to my school a week after I told his assistant that I wasn't even interested in them. I told him no to his face, and it's got to be one of the top five reactions of someone ever. His facial expression was just so funny. My coach was tearing up and had to go in his office to laugh.
More like the state of shock where the guy has literally never been told no in his life. It literally looked like a kid the first time you tell him 'no, you can't do something.' It looked like he was a baby about to cry. It was so funny.
Ah, to be dissed by a teenager. It happens to everyone but when Meyer is involved, ears are perked. Imagine if Alabama head coach Nick Saban had been the object of ridicule by a high school student. It would have broken Twitter.
This appeared to be an isolated incident. Surely Meyer would not get dissed by another recruit.
Then this week happened.
Five-star defensive end Lorenzo Carter talked about his recruiting visits with the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. The Norcross High School (Ga.) prospect is ranked No. 1 by position and No. 4 overall—he's a big deal. Carter had a great experience with Notre Dame which left him "pleasantly surprised." His experience at Ohio State—not so much.
I didn’t really get to see anything. None of the coaches were there. Coach Meyer left before I got there. Nobody was there. It was just (offensive coordinator Tom Herman), the coach who recruits me – he was there with his son.
We just walked around their football building and saw the indoor field and the practice fields. Then we got dinner. When I woke up, (defensive line coach Mike Vrabel) came. We ate breakfast, went by the stadium and Buckeye Grove. And that’s it. We left. Ohio State was just a drive-through. We didn’t really do anything.
It was kind of disappointing but it was whatever.
This was obviously an unofficial visit, but it is by a 5-star prospect from SEC country. It was Meyer's chance to bring some Southern talent up north. Since recruits talk among themselves, the word may be out. And this is not good if Meyer wants to land any big hitters from Georgia.
Why Meyer was not available to talk to the nationally-ranked defensive end is unknown. But having a prospect refer to his school visit as a 'drive-through' is probably not the impression Meyer and his recruiters strive to leave.
It is possible that Meyer does not need another end and felt Carter was not a necessary addition to the class of 2014. If that is the case, Meyer dissing a teenager makes the whole thing even more awkward.
It is also possible that Carter made his plans after Meyer and his coaches had made theirs. Carter may have expected the red carpet treatment—imagine a prospect wanting that?—and felt that the coaching staff should have dropped everything as soon as they were notified of his pending plans.
Ohio State may be guilty of dropping the ball, playing hard to get or simply no longer interested in a prospect. Two of of the three scenarios are not a good look.
The final insult was delivered by Carter. He was impressed by Meyer's old stomping grounds, the University of Florida.
“With Florida, I just had a great time when I went,” Carter told the AJC. “I think my parents have a good relationship with Coach (Will) Muschamp. They like him. And I feel like (defensive line coach Brad Lawing) can make me a better defensive end. I’d be honored to work with him.”
That has to sting a little bit.
Meyer can make all of this bad publicity disappear with a 13-0 season and beating (presumably) Alabama in the title game. If that happens, Meyer can laugh off this summer of disrespect.
Until then, gums are flapping from the mouths of babes.