Ohio State RB commit "hurt as hell" by sudden departure of Ohio State coach after Signing Day


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The Ohio State Buckeyes solidified a Top 10 recruiting class in the nation on National Signing Day with the commitments of a number of blue-chip recruits in the morning, including getting 4-star RB Mike Weber out of Detroit over home state Michigan.

On Thursday, the day after signing day, Ohio State running back coach Stan Drayton was announced as the new running backs coach with the Chicago Bears. Drayton had been a big part of Weber's decision to go to the Buckeyes, and went on Twitter to air out his grievances on the matter.

The Detroit News spoke with Weber's high school football coach at Cass Tech, who said Drayton was the biggest recruiters of Weber.

"I knew Coach Drayton recruited Mikey, came up to the school several times to see him," Cass Tech coach Thomas Wilcher told The News on Thursday. "Really, he was one of the guys who kept hollering at Mikey until they sealed the deal with him.

"I don't know how Mikey feels, but I'll talk to him later (Thursday). He signed the letter of intent, but he hasn't enrolled yet. We'll find out what's going on."

The timing of Drayton's move to the NFL certainly raises some eyebrows, as he waited until after Signing Day, when Weber and all of the recruits had faxed in a signed letter of intent, to leave for the NFL. The move could have led Weber to flip back to Michigan, who he had previously been committed to and was looking at seriously with the addition of Jim Harbaugh.

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The question that this situation brings up is, should programs be more honest about potential coaching departures during recruiting? A recruit is often times committing to a coach as much as he is the school, and if that coach, whether it's a head coach, positional coach, or coordinator, be leaving, that has a big impact on whether he wants to stay at the school.

A similar situation occurred at UCLA, as defensive coordinator Jeff Ulbrich left on Wednesday to join the Atlanta Falcons staff. That move led 4-star LB Roquan Smith to not send in his letter of intent after committing on TV to the Bruins, and he has since reopened his recruitment. It also happened at Florida with the Gators' defensive line coach leaving, and 5-star CeCe Jefferson (and/or his family depending on the report) refusing to send in his LOI.

 

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