Ohio State landed a commitment from one of the state’s fastest-rising prospects on Friday afternoon when Cincinnati Winton Woods four-star cornerback Jermaine Mathews pledged his services to the Buckeyes during a ceremony at his high school.
The 6-foot-0 and 175-pound Mathews, who is considered the 24th-best athlete and No. 373 prospect overall in the class of 2023, picked Ohio State over finalists Cincinnati, Jackson State, LSU, Oklahoma and Penn State.
Mathews landed an offer from the Buckeyes following a one-day camp at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center on June 1, where he notably ran a 4.35-second 40-yard dash and displayed all of the traits of a lockdown cornerback during one-on-one drills.
Mathews’ performance not only caught the eye of defensive coordinator Jim Knowles and secondary/cornerbacks coach Tim Walton, but he also had several current players – including redshirt freshman safety and fellow Cincinnati native Jaylen Johnson – pleading for the staff to offer him.
Mathews previously planned to make his college decision on July 4 from the likes of Cincinnati, Kentucky, Pittsburgh and West Virginia. However, the offer from Ohio State – as well as subsequent offers from LSU and Oklahoma – changed things considerably.
Mathews ultimately took an official visit with the Bearcats on June 3-5 and followed that with a trip to Baton Rouge for a camp with the Tigers on June 16. He then had his official visit with the Buckeyes on June 17-19, at which time the staff made it clear he was a priority.
Shortly thereafter, Mathews announced his top schools and set a commitment date. He now becomes the 16th member of Ohio State’s 2023 recruiting class, joining Tampa (Fla.) Wharton four-star Dijon Johnson; Ellenwood (Ga.) Cedar Grove four-star Kayin Lee; and Waxahachie, Texas, four-star Calvin Simpson-Hunt at the cornerback position.
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