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2024 IMG Academy Running Back Stacy Gage “Felt Like A Buckeye” During Ohio State Camp

Gage held a private workout with running backs coach Tony Alford during his one-day camp visit this week.
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When Ohio State five-star quarterback commit Dylan Raiola was asked this week which players in the class of 2024 he’s recruiting to join him in Columbus, he listed off five of the nation’s top-rated prospects.

Among them was Bradenton (Fla.) IMG Academy four-star running back Stacy Gage, who – conveniently – was also on campus for a one-day camp at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center on June 21.

It marked the third trip to Ohio State for Gage, who is considered the second-best running back and No. 37 prospect in the class of 2024, as he attended the 56-7 win over Michigan State last November and a spring practice on April 2.

This trip was different, though, as it allowed him to work out with running backs coach Tony Alford. He was put through a gamut of individual drills in the blazing sun and showed exactly why he holds more than 40 offers from some of the best programs in the country.

“It felt great just being coached by one of the coaches I’ve been talking to since I was in eight grade,” Gage said after the camp. “Just putting that work in made me feel good. It made me feel like a Buckeye today.”

Stacy Gage and Tony Alford

Gage has built a strong relationship with Alford over the last two years. The two talk almost weekly, which is why the Buckeyes will undoubtedly be in his recruitment until the end.

“He tells me I’d fit great into the program, that I’d be a good Buckeye running back,” Gage said. “With all the good running backs coming out of this program with Coach Alford coaching them, I always thought I could be one of those guys – and probably be even better.

“All coaches say they love my mentality. I always come with a dog mentality, always think I’m better than the next guy.”

Gage acknowledged that Raiola’s early commitment, as well as the recent pledge from his teammate at IMG, 2023 five-star wide receiver Carnell Tate, improves Ohio State’s chances of landing his pledge. He plans to return to campus in late July, presumably for the program’s annual Buckeye Bash and BBQ.

“With him being here, that’s a plus, too,” Gage said of Tate. “(We’d make) a one-two punch. You can throw the ball and you can run. With him being here, we can do the same thing we do at IMG.”

Stacy Gage

As for when he would like to make his college decision, Gage hopes to be committed by the start of his senior year. 

If he chooses Ohio State, he would become the latest in a recent line of Ascenders who have made the move to Columbus, joining offensive guard Tyler Gerald and defensive tackle Malik Barrow in 2016, cornerback Marcus Williamson and Isaiah Pryor in 2017, defensive tackle Taron Vincent in 2018, cornerback Lejond Cavazos in 2020 and Tate in 2023.

“Really, all I am looking for is getting to the next level, being coached by great coaches, being around good players and winning a national title,” Gage said. “I just really want to get to the next level, and I feel like this could be a program to do that.”

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