Ellenwood (Ga.) Cedar Grove four-star defensive tackle Christen Miller included Ohio State in his top four on Tuesday afternoon alongside Georgia, Oregon and USC.
The 6-foot-4 and 285-pound Miller, who is considered the 20th-best defensive tackle and No. 119 prospect overall in the class of 2022, was in Columbus for a one-day camp visit on June 2, which included an individual workout with defensive line coach Larry Johnson.
“It was amazing,” Miller told BuckeyesNow and other reporters gathered at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center that afternoon. “Coach Johnson was just trying to push to me that every down is fourth down in your eyes. You have to be able to come off the ball, keep it consistent and just keep it going. Through my eyes in the whole workout, it was fourth down, fourth down, fourth down, so no matter how tired I was, no matter how drained I was, I had to get back up and go. I loved the workout.
“When we got in film, he was saying stuff that I didn’t think he could really see. Like he told me, ‘OK, your feet are this way.’ And I’m like, ‘How did you see that?’ And during the workouts, he told me something and the next round, I fixed it. I took off. He was just telling me everything I did good, everything I did bad. Honestly, it was amazing.”
Miller, who hails from the same high school as and is close friends with returning senior defensive tackle Antwuan Jackson, was set to return to Columbus for an official visit on June 25 but ultimately postponed the trip to the fall. The decision to hold off immediately followed an official visit to USC on June 11-13, and most assumed it was only a matter of time before he committed to the Trojans.
Miller plans to be an actor when his playing days are over, and the financial opportunities that could present themselves in Los Angeles thanks to the new rules on name, image and likeness certainly make the program an attractive option for an athlete with his charisma and lofty goals.
Adding to that, USC landed a commitment in mid-June from Columbus (Ga.) Hardaway four-star defensive lineman Mykel Williams. He and Miller took their official visits with the Trojans at the same time and have no doubt discussed playing together in college.
All that said, Miller likely hasn’t made a decision for one of two reasons: 1.) the allure of playing for the home state team in the Bulldogs, or 2.) the opportunity to be coached by Johnson. Luckily for Ohio State, Miller holds Johnson in high regard, as he notably likened him to an Italian sports car.
“Lamborghinis don’t have commercials because we all know what they do,” Miller said. “Hondas have commercials, Kias have commercials because they need to compete with each other. Lamborghinis don’t need to compete with anybody. Coach Johnson don’t have to compete with anybody. What you see is what you get.”
Now the Buckeyes must wait for him to make his way to campus again, presumably for the Oct. 30 game against Penn State and hope that Johnson’s credentials are enough to push them over the edge.
That said, Ohio State is aiming to land three defensive tackles this cycle, with Miller; Greenwood (Ind.) Center Grove four-star Caden Curry; Owasso, Okla., four-star Chris McClellan; and Santa Margarita (Calif.) Catholic four-star Hero Kanu at the top of the priority chart.
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