November 20, 2011

2013 DE still high on OSU

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Ohio State hosted several highly regarded juniors on Saturday, including Pickerington (Ohio) North product Jake Butt. The 6-foot-6, 220-pound defensive end/tight end is among the top junior prospects in the Buckeye state and is starting to see his recruiting stock soar.

"It's going really well, I'm up to 11 offers right now so I can't complain about that too much," said Butt. "I hope to pick up a few more here soon, hopefully Tennessee will offer soon and I'm going up to the Michigan/Ohio State game. I talked to Michigan's defensive line coach a couple weeks ago and he told me that they will know where I'm at as far as an offer goes by this week."

Butt has been to Ohio State multiple times this season and despite the loss on Saturday, said he had a good time on his unofficial visit.

"It's a tough situation with everything going on at Penn State right now but it was a really good experience," he said. "I got to see a lot of my friends, Sean Welsh, Pat Elflein, Godwin Igwebuike and I had a really good time at the game, and it's just unfortunate that they didn't win."

Before the game, Butt spoke to the two coaches that have been in charge of his recruitment to this point.

"I talked to coach (Mike) Vrabel and coach (Greg) Gillum," he explained. "They said that they are just working out all of the things with the NCAA and once everything clears, they are going to start recruiting our class (more heavily). Both coaches said they liked me on film and that they were happy to have me down to all of the games and Vrabel said he liked me and was going to be my (main recruiter)."

With rumors of a coaching change swirling, Butt added that no matter what happens at Ohio State, he still will have a strong amount of interest in the program.

"Not at all," he said, on whether a change would alter his view on Ohio State. "Ohio State is Ohio State no matter who the coach is. It will always be 'Ohio State is Ohio State' to me so whatever happens, happens so I'll see where I'm at at that point."

On the field, Butt and his Pickerington North team went 8-2 on the season and were one of Central Ohio's best teams. Unfortunately, the strong record wasn't enough to qualify for a playoff berth but Butt was satisfied with the progress the program is making.

"It was our best record ever and we blew out all of the teams that we should have blew out," he said. "It was a tough loss at Central which I personally think we should have won and it just sucks that we had to lose. We honestly deserved to lose to Gahanna, we just came out flat. Other than that, we played real well and our strength of schedule just hurt us in the end."

Individually, Butt had a big season on both sides of the football. The athletic pass-rusher recorded 9.5 sacks and scored seven touchdowns on offense while leading the team in receiving.

"Individually, I played probably the best season I've ever played in any of my sports," he said. "I was half a sack away from the single season record and I already have the career sacks record and the career tackles-for-loss record. I'm creeping up on all of the career receiving records too, so it was a real good season for me."

Butt added that he planned to return to Ohio State next June for a senior camp and that a final decision would not be made until at least next summer.


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