As Georgia and Louisiana continue to produce talented players, it has come at
the expense of Ohio among states at the top of the high school football totem
The Buckeye State had a run in the mid-2000s when it might have made an argument
to turn the Big Three of Florida, Texas and California into a Big Four, but that
has slowly changed.
Ted Ginn Jr. was the highest-ranked player to come from
Ohio as the No. 2 player in the class of 2004. His successes have been limited,
and he represents the head of an otherwise unspectacular group of high school
five-stars from Ohio.
From the class of 2002 -- when Rivals.com established the Rivals100 -- to the
class of 2013, there have been 11 states to have double-digit players earn
five-star rankings. This week, it is time to turn back the
clock and put those players in order based on what they did in high school.
None of the players identified as midseason five-stars for the class of 2014 is
considered for this ranking. Each is subject to change through the regular
season and all-star game evaluations.
Ohio has had 17 players rated five-stars by Rivals.com, but most have been
marginal players instead of the standouts many wanted.
"It seems odd that the state of Ohio has only had four prospects ranked in the
top 10 nationally in all our years of the Rivals100, but that's the case," he
said. "Ginn Jr. is the choice at No. 1 barely over Beanie Wells, and both went
on to great success at Ohio State. Adams was so talented, with his combination
of size and athleticism, that it's hard to believe he underachieved, while Boone
falls into a similar category although less athletic.
"This is one of the most disappointing lists overall, with only Ginn and Wells
making it as first-rounders and joining Rudolph and Boone as having solid but
unspectacular NFL careers thus far."
Anderson was heavily recruited and chose Miami. He left the program,
went to East Mississippi Community College and declared he was then going to
Cincinnati. He didn't, and he hasn't been heard from on the football
Clarett led the Buckeyes to a national championship and then unsuccessfully
challenged the NFL draft eligibility rules. He was arrested in 2006 and was
found to have a katana, a loaded AK-47 and two handguns, and he was wearing
Kevlar body armor. After spending time in prison, he played a season with the
Omaha Nighthawks of the United Football League and in May of 2013 joined the
Tiger Rugby Club outside of Columbus, Ohio.
Farrell said the talent wasted by Anderson was more disappointing, and he added
there was another player from the Cleveland (Ohio) Glenville secondary who
should have been given a fifth star.
"Donte Whitner was No. 27 overall in 2003 and just missed the cut as a
five-star," Farrell said. "He and Antonio Cromartie are corners from that class
who clearly proved they should have earned that coveted distinction."