Ohio State camp opens with Sonny Styles, QBs, Christen Miller as focus
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Ohio State camp opens with Sonny Styles, QBs, Christen Miller as focus

Article written by:Jeremy BirminghamJeremy Birmingham

Birm

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Stay in touch or be left out because Ohio State recruiting is a 24-hour, seven-day-per-week obsession. What’s the latest news as the Buckeyes build for the future? Get that and more Sunday through Thursday on Lettermen Row. Today’s notebook looks at some of what Lettermen Row will be watching as the Buckeyes first recruiting camp since 2019 kicks off Wednesday afternoon.

Sonny Styles ready to show talent to Ohio State coaches

There’s a good argument that Sonny Styles is the best overall football prospect in Ohio regardless of class, and that’s what makes his first camp appearance of the summer so interesting. He is not a player who has to camp at Ohio State or anywhere else.

But here he is, showing up on the Buckeyes campus for the first camp in the last two years anyway. Now the question is this: To what lengths will Ohio State coaches go to make sure he’s working out in their position groups this afternoon. Is Sonny Styles a linebacker? Is he a defensive back?

It doesn’t really matter, he’s going to be very, very good for a long time to come.

As camp returns to Ohio State and to college football, there’s nothing better than the state’s best player showing up and showing out just because he loves to compete. Sonny Styles is Priority No. 1 for Lettermen Row on Wednesday.

Young quarterbacks wasting no time getting to Ohio State

One of the biggest storylines of June is the Ohio State search for a 2023 quarterback. That search begins in earnest on Wednesday afternoon.

Five soon-to-be junior quarterbacks who have the Buckeyes attention are heading to Columbus for the first camp session of the summer. Ohio State will host Louisiana’s Eli Holstein, Georgia’s Malachi Singleton, California’s Nico Iamalaeva and two Tennessee prospects, Kenny Minchey and Chris Parsons.

Iamalaeva, the country’s No. 5-ranked quarterback, headlines the group. He has offers from 16 schools, and a Buckeyes offer could make them a real contender in his recruitment. The same can be said for Holstein, the No. 7-ranked quarterback. The two working out side-by-side provides a good opportunity for Corey Dennis and Ryan Day to evaluate in real time. Parson, from Ravenwood (Brentwood, Tenn.) High School, is a 3-star prospect who has watched the Buckeyes closely for years.

“Ohio State is a school that I’ve been watching ever since I could remember,” Parsons told Lettermen Row. “I really wanted to make the trip so I could see the campus and get to interact with the coaches and staff.”

The 6-foot-1, 195-pound prospect has trained with both Ron Veal and Quincy Avery. That pair has worked with Justin Fields, and that’s the player Parsons said he’s grown up watching closely.

“I love his game,” Parsons said. “I’ve been watching Ohio State since the Terrelle Pryor days, and they’ve had many talented guys come through like Braxton Miller, J.T. Barrett, Cardale Jones, Dwayne Haskins — but Justin Fields is a guy that I actually look up to. He’s a guy that I’ve studied closely since he was in high school.”

Parsons looks up to Justin Fields, and Malachi Singleton lives in the same Atlanta suburb — Kennesaw — that Fields comes from. He’s the No. 17-ranked quarterback in the country and a 4-star prospect according to 247Sports.com.

Minchey is unranked, but Lettermen Row sources indicate some real interest from Ohio State. Michigan State and Tennessee are among his eight early offers.

This group is going to be watched closely throughout their workout session as Ohio State looks to begin narrowing down options at quarterback in the Class of 2023.

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Christen Miller will get his first in-person time with Larry Johnson during an early June Ohio State visit. (Birm/Lettermen Row)

Christen Miller, Kayin Lee coming from Georgia

Malachi Singleton isn’t the only Georgia prospect coming to town. A pair of Cedar Grove (Ellenwood) defensive stars are heading north to visit the Buckeyes.

Christen Miller, a 4-star defensive tackle, will make the first of two visits to Ohio State this month. Miller is one of the country’s biggest recruiting personalities and counts Buckeyes defensive tackle Antwuan Jackson among his role models and peers. He’s going to make sure to work with Larry Johnson, and he’ll be back at the end of the month for an official visit.

Coming with Miller is Kayin Lee. Back in March there’d not yet been any Buckeyes contact with Lee, but the country’s No. 10-ranked 2023 cornerback is getting his chance to enter the important conversation now. He’ll look to become the next in a line of Cedar Grove prospects to become an Ohio State target.

In-state receiver Anthony Brown hoping to impress

One of Ohio’s most exciting young players is camping for the Buckeyes today. His name is Anthony Brown and he’s an electric receiver with the football in his hands and one of the toughest players in the state to cover one-on-one.

He’ll work out for Brian Hartline on Wednesday, and in doing so he will get his first chance to show that size isn’t all that matters in a Buckeyes receiver. Brown is small — checking in at just about 5-foot-9 inches and less than 160 pounds, but he’s one heck of a football player.

Pair of 2023 linemen to watch

There will be a number of players in Columbus tomorrow and throughout the month. Greg Studrawa and the Buckeyes offensive line coaches will have a lot to watch and that starts with two talented 2023 linemen coming on Wednesday.

Amir Herring, a 4-star interior lineman from West Bloomfield (Mich.) High School, and Luke Burgess from New Palestine (Ind.) We talked about both of these players in the last few weeks, and I’m especially interested in seeing Burgess as he works away from basketball and into being a football player. He’s got the type of frame — at 6-foot-8 and 270 pounds — to develop into something really special.

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Christian Gray is a long, fluid cornerback from St. Louis. (Birm/Lettermen Row)

Christian Gray will get first chance to impress Ohio State coaches

It was about a year ago the first time I wrote about DeSmet (St. Louis) High School 2023 cornerback Christian Gray. He was a very impressive young cornerback at the UC Report combine in Ohio and was someone who we believed could work into a Buckeyes-level prospect. The next step toward that happening is underway with a camp trip coming on Wednesday afternoon.

“I have been in communication with Coach Coombs for a past couple of weeks,” Gray told Lettermen Row. “I’m coming to camp on Wednesday.”

DeSmet is the home of Buckeyes 2021 signee J.K. Johnson and Gray has a chance to be the next big-time defensive back from that talent-rich school. He’s an early 4-star prospect according to 247Sports.com and has three offers. Kansas State, Kentucky and Iowa State are the first schools in the mix for the 6-foot, 175 pound corner.

Need more Ohio State recruiting #Stuff? Join the conversation below in the comments and sign up for Scarlet Sunrise, Lettermen Row’s morning newsletter that will get your day started with all the important Ohio State news you need to know. Prefer video? Follow Buckeyes football on YouTube with Lettermen Row. You can also get your recruiting fix by subscribing to Talking Stuff: The Ohio State Recruiting Podcast on iTunes, Spotify, Google Play and Stitcher.