On the eve of four-star defensive tackle Thomas Holley’s official visit to Ohio State, one of the members of the Buckeyes’ class of 2014 put in a quick work to prep the 6-foot-4, 295-pounder.
It came via Erasmus Hall athlete Curtis Samuel, whose team was beaten by Holley’s Abraham Lincoln High in a battle of Brooklyn powerhouses.
“After the game I spent some time talking to him and he was trying to recruit me,” Holley said. “He said Ohio State could use me.”
Then, Holley found out what Ohio State has to offer by arriving early Saturday for official visit, and it began with breakfast at the team hotel prior to the Buckeyes’ game against Iowa.
“I had an opportunity to talk to some of the guys and get a feel for them,” Holley said. “After that, I was in the hotel room while the guys were getting their suits and stuff ready to leave to go to the bus and the game. After that, I watched the guys load the bus and I went to talk to some of the coaches and watched the game.
“After that, I ate dinner with the coaches and their families, and then I hung out with (defensive lineman) Tyquan Lewis, a freshman. I had a good time with him, and had a good time with some of the other defensive linemen and players in general.”
One of the interesting parts of Holley’s trip was the timing. Since he didn’t arrive until Saturday morning, he didn’t leave campus until Monday morning, and that meant he was able to watch Sunday’s practice and also enjoy the spoils of the win.
“I got to watch them practice and I got to eat the victory meal with them,” Holley said. “I had an opportunity to go over the whole campus. It was a good day.”
It also included sit down meetings with assistant coach Mike Vrabel and coach Urban Meyer, and it detailed not only how Holley could fit into Ohio State as a student, but onto the Buckeyes’ defensive line.
“They were talking about moving some guys around in positions and that would leave a spot open for me,” Holley said. “They said they had a guy there, Michael Bennett, and he’d probably be the guy I would be behind as far as my position.”
The meeting with Meyer was one of the standout moments of the weekend.
“He’s very mellow,” Holley said. “He talks a lot about his family, and the players he has, and the things he done with his players, and about the school, in general. He’s very mild-mannered.”
Holley already made an official visit to Penn State is also looking at Florida, Notre Dame and Syracuse, but he said no other official visits were set.
However, he said Ohio State did not give him a hard sell during his trip.
“They didn’t try to pressure me too much,” Holley said. “Every once in a while they’d say, ‘It’s great to be a Buckeye,’ but mostly there wasn’t any pressure.
“Every school has their own individual traditions that they like to do after the game, and before the game. Just to experience Ohio State’s is really cool.”