Ohio State welcomed St. Louis Lutheran North four-star cornerback Toriano Pride and his parents to campus for an official visit on June 4-6, which will most likely be the only chance they get to impress him before he makes his college decision later this summer.
"It was fun," Pride told SI All-American. "It was real good. I got to meet the players, hang out with them and meet the coaches finally. They really showed that you’re a priority and they want you. Based off the time of us building this relationship for a year and a half, they’ve always made me feel like a priority with how consistent they are with me."
The 5-foot-11 and 172-pound Pride had been to campus multiple times before, including the 2015 spring game as the guest of family friend and former Ohio State running back Ezekiel Elliott.
But those trips were nowhere near as in-depth as his official visit, when Pride spent a considerable amount of one-on-one time with defensive coordinator Kerry Coombs and hung out with some of the Buckeyes’ defensive back commitments, namely West Chester (Ohio) Lakota West four-star cornerback Jyaire Brown and Seffner (Fla.) Armwood three-star athlete Kye Stokes.
Pride, who briefly visited Missouri to open the month and immediately followed his trip to Ohio State with an official visit to Oregon, also has official visits scheduled to Clemson on June 11-13, Arkansas on June 18-20 and Auburn on June 25-27. He’s considering an unofficial visit to Georgia, as well, before making a commitment of his own.
"Just getting a really good vibe, my parents liking it and me liking it," Pride said when asked what will be the biggest factor in his eventual pledge. “Talking to some of the players that are currently there and getting their perspective on why they chose a school."
In addition to Brown and Stokes, Ohio State also holds commitments in the secondary from Jacksonville Robert E. Lee five-star cornerback Jaheim Singletary and Hollywood (Fla.) Chaminade-Madonna Prep three-star Ryan Turner.
That doesn’t really impact Pride, though, as the Buckeyes are looking to add as many as three more defensive backs this cycle, with Pride, Las Vegas Bishop Gorman four-star safety Zion Branch and Altoona (Iowa) Southeast Polk four-star safety Xavier Nwankpa at the top of the list. All three were on campus last weekend, perhaps having conversations about them all roaming the same secondary in college.
As for Pride, he will finish his high school career in the 2022 All-American Bowl and enroll at the school of his choice in January. Whether that school is Ohio State remains to be seen, though.
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