Rivals100 Five-Star Challenge: Storylines for Ohio State fans
The Rivals100 Five-Star Challenge presented by adidas will take place at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta on June 25, and with 100 of the top prospects from the 2020 and 2021 classes in attendance many college programs are going to keenly interested in the event’s outcome. One of those programs will be Ohio State, which will have three commits and large collection of its top targets in attendance.
PREVIEWING THE NEXT OHIO STATE QB BATTLE
One of the most compelling storylines of the entire Five-Star Challenge heading into next week is Ohio State having both of its quarterback commits in attendance. It remains to be seen if 2020 four-star Jack Miller and 2021 four-star Kyle McCord are paired on the same team for 7-on-7 or get drafted to different teams, but either way this event could foreshadow what is expected to be Ohio State’s next big quarterback battle.
Sophomore Justin Fields is the captain of the Buckeyes' offense going into the 2019 season, and presumably will also be at the helm in 2020. Whether he leaves after the 2020 season or stays through 2021, Miller and McCord should both be on campus by then and the competition for Fields' successor can commence. Next week’s competition in Atlanta could be the prologue, then, for what should be a very interesting future quarterback competition.
Ohio State’s biggest official visit weekend of the 2020 class thus far starts on Friday, and several of the Buckeyes' official and unofficial visitors are then expected to make their way down to Atlanta on Monday for the Five-Star Challenge.
There are 15 official visitors headed to Ohio State this weekend, and four are also on the Five-Star Challenge roster. In-state defensive end Darrion Henry along with New Jersey linebacker Cody Simon, Massachusetts tight end Cam Large and Florida athlete Jaylan Knighton will head to Atlanta shortly after finishing their official visits with Ohio State this weekend.
Additionally, five-star running back Zachary Evans will be unofficially visiting Ohio State this weekend before he heads to the Five-Star Challenge, and 2021 quarterback commit Kyle McCord will be in Columbus to make sure all goes well for the big visit weekend. Monday’s Media Day for the Five-Star Challenge, then, should feature a lot of post-visit commentary on the Buckeyes.
A MONOPOLY ON RUNNING BACKS
One of the smallest position groups at the Five-Star Challenge is running back, and Ohio State is a player for nearly every top ball carrier expected to be in attendance. Evans, the five-star running back out of Texas, ranks Ohio State in his top five and will be unofficially visiting Columbus this weekend. He may be the longest shot of the Buckeyes' top running back targets in Atlanta next week. Ryan Day’s staff just hosted Arizona four-star Bijan Robinson for an official visit this past weekend, and New Jersey four-star Jalen Berger has made several unofficial visits to Ohio State.
The only Five-Star Challenge running back Ohio State is not a major player for is Illinois commit Reggie Love, but the Buckeyes are a top contender for Love’s teammate, four-star Mookie Cooper. Ohio State projects Cooper as an H-receiver in its offense, which has some ball-carrying duties.