College football is its own ever-changing universe right now and the colliding galaxies of NIL and the transfer portal are creating ripples throughout space and time.
This collision is creating dilemmas like does a program have the space to bring in a transfer and do coaches have the time to produce yet another recruiting pitch?
At some point sleep becomes a necessity for most humans, you know.
But sometimes the lure of the portal can be as intoxicating for coaches as it is for the players. Especially when there are stars sitting in free agency limbo right now.
That just happens to be the case for a number of head coaches currently as former Pitt receiver Jordan Addison sits and waits for an offer that he cannot refuse. Addison caught 100 passes for 1,593 yards and 17 touchdowns last year, winning the Biletnikoff Award as the nation’s most outstanding receiver.
He famously entered the portal last month in search of a better situation for himself. The reports even before he entered the portal were that he was USC-bound. That hasn’t happened yet, however, because schools like Texas and Alabama have also gotten involved.
Given the success that Ohio State has had with their receivers — including sending Garrett Wilson and Chris Olave into the first round of last month’s NFL Draft, the Buckeyes would also seem like an ideal situation. Especially when you consider that they just lost a pair of starters.
To this point there’s been no real traction with OSU’s involvement, despite a report that Addison may be waiting by the phone to receive a call from the Buckeyes.
Addison could be waiting a while for that call, however, because that’s not really been Ohio State’s game.
“I think you’re being a little bit disingenuous if on the front end you’re talking to your families and your recruits about the opportunity to play at Ohio State, and then just to go try to get the best player out there in front of him, that could create some hard feelings,” Buckeye head coach Ryan Day said earlier this month when talking about recruiting from the portal.
That doesn’t mean Ohio State won’t do it. It just means there has to be a hole that needs filled. They brought in Jonah Jackson in 2019 because they needed help on the interior. They also landed Justin Fields to replace Dwayne Haskins. In 2020, they brought in Trey Sermon to help replace JK Dobbins. And then last year they took in kicker Noah Ruggles to help bolster their special teams.
Ohio State has been very selective when bringing in transfers, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t looking. Day hired former NFL scout Ryan Cavanaugh last year as College Scouting Coordinator in part to evaluate the players in the portal full time.
“And if the fit’s right, then we’ll do it,” Day said. “But we are making sure that we’re taking care of the guys on our team first.”
So would Addison be a fit? Is there a need? Well, losing Chris Olave and Garrett Wilson certainly creates a hole, but you’d be hard-pressed to find somebody who isn’t excited to see OSU’s current receivers like Marvin Harrison, Julian Fleming, and Emeka Egbuka have larger roles in the Buckeye offense.
Ohio State has recruited very well at the receiver position, which makes the job of replacing guys who leave much easier. Wilson and Olave are two of the best Buckeyes to ever catch a pass, but Jordan Addison might be one way to lessen the pain of their respective departures.
Given the talent on hand, however, it shouldn’t be necessary. There really isn’t a need. And that’s the biggest difference between Addison and everybody else Ohio State has targeted in the portal previously.
“We really haven’t spent a lot of time focusing on the transfer portal because I think if you want to sustain the program for a long period of time, I think recruits and their families, when you recruit them and talk to them about the plan for them to develop in your program, they want to see that happen,” Day explained.
“And they really don’t want to see a transfer come in and jump somebody in line. And so when there is a hole, we’ve done it before. We had Trey Sermon, we’ve had Justin, we’ve had Jonah Jackson, we’ve had Noah Ruggles. So we’ve had our fair share of transfers, but it’s not something we want to rely on.”