Tom Ryan and Co. now have their first commitment in the 2023 class from the No. 8 overall junior Rocco Welsh out of Waynesburg (PA)
With only a few targets left in the 2022 class, the Buckeyes coaching staff got to work on the 2023 class and identified Welsh as an early priority.
From there it was up to the Ohio State coaching staff to making Welsh feel at home in Columbus and they did exactly that, which is why he chose to commit.
“It just kind of felt like home,” Welsh told Buckeye Scoop. “I loved all the coaches and the kids on the team. It’s kind of like we already have a good relationship but I’ve only known them for a short amount of time.”
On Jun. 15, the first-day college coaches can contact juniors, Welsh’s phone was blowing up. That is when he first heard from the Buckeyes head coach and the two began building their relationship.
“Tom Ryan was one of the first coaches to contact me, then about a week later I talked to most of their assistants and now we’re in a group chat,” said Welsh.
From there it was only natural that Welsh make a trip to Columbus, which came the day of the Oregon vs. Ohio State game. Despite the loss on the football field Welsh still enjoyed his time with the wrestling team.
“I went on an official to the Oregon game and that was a crazy game. It was sweet to hang out with the guys and get to know them better,” said Welsh. “I’ve been up there a few times too just to practice with the prospect camps on the weekends.”
Now that he is committed, Welsh is ready to put his recruiting hat on and he already has a target in mind, namely Vinny Kilkeary. The Latrobe (PA) standout is one of the top 113-pound wrestlers in the country and close friends with Ohio State’s newest commit.
The two have already begun talking about teaming up in college.
“For sure, we have talked about that a lot and we’d liked to be on the same team because we’ve always been on the same club team so that would be cool to be on his team again,” he said. ”I think he likes Ohio State a lot.”
Welsh is the No. 4 170-pound wrestler in the country according to MatScouts. He is ranked as the No. 17 pound-for-pound wrestler, on top of being the No. 8 overall prospect in the 2023 class.
After having a big class in 2022, expect Ohio State to go for quality more than quantity in the 2023 class. Which makes Welsh an even more important land for the Buckeyes and Tom Ryan.