Ohio State picked up an elite Class of 2018 safety in February 2017 when 5-star Jaiden Woodbey committed to the Buckeyes. His recruitment has taken some late twists and turns, but if Woodbey sticks with Ohio State his addition will give the Buckeyes another top-notch defensive back and future NFL draft pick.
Here’s some background information on Woodbey as the early signing period approaches.
Jaiden Woodbey: Stats, bio
Name: Jaiden Woodbey
Weight: 204 pounds
School/Team: Bellflower (Calif.) St. John Bosco
Jaiden Woodbey: Recruiting rankings
National: No. 27
Position (SAF): No. 2
State (Calif.): No. 4
Note: Data according to 247Sports composite rankings
Jaiden Woodbey: Commitment
Woodbey was offered by Ohio State in June 2016 and committed a little more than half a year later in February 2017.
“I feel like it’s best right now because I know that I’m going to get the best out of Ohio State,” Woodbey told Land of 10. “They have been recruiting me harder than any other school, honestly. I feel like if a school really wants you, they would recruit you weekly and and you would be on the phone with them constantly and that is how it has been with Ohio State.
“I have learned from the past that switching from school to school will give you a bad look so you have to do your research for everything. Honestly, I just wanted to knock it out and get the recruiting process out of the way. After signing day, I knew where I was really going to go and I don’t need recruiting to be a factor to me this season. I need to focus more on bringing Bosco a second state championship and second national championship. This recruiting process is already stressful as it is. I have been talking to my parents about this for the last two months.”
A week later he publicly declared his recruiting process over, but it didn’t stay that way. Ohio State has effectively had to continue recruiting Woodbey as hard as it did when he was uncommitted. In the days leading up to the early signing period, the situation became even more dire. Woodbey took a visit to USC on Dec. 15 and then flew across the country for an unofficial visit to Florida State on Dec. 16.
He said he’ll sign Dec. 20 but has not yet reaffirmed his Ohio State commitment or flipped to USC or Florida State.
What Jaiden Woodbey brings to Ohio State
If Woodbey ends up in Columbus, it will be a massive get for Ohio State — especially since he’s a California native and USC legacy. He’s a hard-hitting safety who is one of the best defensive backs in the country. Down the line, he looks like a potential All-America caliber player.
Ohio State is losing senior safeties Damon Webb and Erick Smith, so the depth chart will be a little thin there entering spring. As an early enrollee, Woodbey would have a chance to come in and compete for a spot. At the very least, he would have a chance at some valuable early reps and the experience of competing for playing time.
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