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OSU Coach Meyer on National Signing Day: "I Think We Won Today"

COLUMBUS (Ken Hines) -- OSU coach Urban Meyer took a big step toward returning the Buckeyes to the top of the Big Ten on Wednesday, landing a recruiting class that is widely-regarded as the best in the conference.

Twenty-three players signed letters of intent to join the Buckeyes on National Signing Day, forming what is likely the best recruiting class of Meyer's tenure at OSU, according to the coach.

"I think we won today," Meyer said.

The Buckeyes' 2014 class is ranked in the top five nationally by recruiting sites Rivals.com, Scout.com, and 247 Sports.com. ESPN.com ranks OSU's class at number seven. OSU's recruits ranked atop the Big Ten on all four sites.

The jewel of the Buckeyes' class is linebacker Raekwon McMillan, a 6'3" 235 lb. Georgia product. McMillan heads an incoming group of four linebackers that, Meyer believes, will provide strength at a position that performed below expectations in 2013. The coach expects all four players to contribute on the field during the upcoming season.

The new class includes one central Ohio product, Bishop Ready offensive lineman Brady Taylor, who spurred Virginia Tech to sign with his hometown team when the Buckeyes offered him a scholarship.

The 2014 class is the first for Meyer in Columbus that is not constrained by scholarship reductions resulting from the infamous Tattoo-Gate scandal that occurred under former head coach Jim Tressel. Meyer believes the penalties had a significant impact on the team's performance, especially in the defensive backfield and on special teams.

Seven members of the incoming class, including McMillan, are already enrolled at OSU, getting a jump on the transition from high school to one of the nation's premier college football programs.

Meyer made it clear Wednesday that the freshmen are expected to be ready to take the field when the Buckeyes kick off the 2014 season against Navy in Baltimore on August 30.

"We're counting on these guys to play," he said.

2014 OSU Recruiting Class (information from ohiostatebuckeyes.com):

- Kyle Berger    LB    6-2    225    Cleveland, Ohio/St. Ignatius

- Dante Booker    LB    6-3    215    Akron, Ohio/St. Vincent-St. Mary

- Noah Brown    WR    6-2    225    Sparta, N.J./Pope John XXIII

- Parris Campbell     WR    6-1    184    Akron, Ohio/St. Vincent-St. Mary

- Stephen Collier     QB    6-3    210    Leesburg, Ga./Lee County

- Johnnie Dixon WR    5-11    195    West Palm Beach, Fla./Dwyer

- Jalyn Holmes DL    6-5    240    Norfolk, Va./Lake Taylor

- Malik Hooker S       6-2    190    New Castle, Pa./New Castle

- Sam Hubbard LB    6-6    230    Cincinnati, Ohio/Archbishop Moeller

- Jamarco Jones OL    6-5    315    Chicago, Ill./De La Salle

- Marcelys Jones     OL    6-5    340    Cleveland, Ohio/Glenville

- Demetrius Knox OL    6-4    285    Fort Worth, Texas/All Saints Episcopal

- Marshon Lattimore CB    6-0    180    Cleveland, Ohio/Glenville

- Terry McLaurin WR    6-0    190    Indianapolis, Ind./Cathedral

- Raekwon McMillan LB    6-2    242    Hinesville, Ga./Liberty County

- Sean Nuernberger  K    6-1    235    Buckner, Ky./Oldham County

- Curtis Samuel RB/WR    5-11    185    Brooklyn, N.Y./Erasmus Hall

- Darius Slade DL    6-5    240    Montclair, N.J./Montclair

- Erick Smith S    6-1    195    Cleveland, Ohio/Glenville

- Brady Taylor OL    6-5    290    Columbus, Ohio/Bishop Ready

- Dylan Thompson DL    6-5    270    Lombard, Ill./Montini Catholic

- Kyle Trout  OL             6-6    300    Lancaster, Ohio/Lancaster

- Damon Webb CB    5-11    180    Detroit, Mich./Cass Tech
 
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