Another official visit weekend at Ohio State is underway, with the Buckeyes hosting one of their top remaining targets as they polish off the 2019 recruiting class before National Signing Day on Feb. 6.
While last week‘s list was long between several of OSU’s 15 signees and six early enrollees to go with a longtime commitment and a priority prospect, Friday kicked off a pivotal 48 hours in Columbus.
Ohio State is hosting Kahuku, Hawaii, four-star offensive guard Enokk Vimahi. The 6-4 1/2, 263-pounder arrived to Ohio’s capital in the afternoon and will be on campus into Sunday.
Landed 📍😉 pic.twitter.com/xhn791PlcB
— Enokk "Inoke" Vimahi (@enokkvimahi) January 25, 2019
Vimahi told 247Sports’ Tom Loy on Jan. 3 that he continued to navigate an open recruitment while his father, David, listed Enokk’s top three at the time — Oklahoma, Notre Dame and Southern California.
“Just a heads up for everyone out there still wondering … I am 100 percent not committed anywhere,” Vimahi said. “My recruitment is still open.”
In need of offensive linemen, the Buckeyes heard Vimahi and offered on Jan. 4 while in San Antonio for the All-American Bowl the week of Jan. 5.
— Enokk "Inoke" Vimahi (@enokkvimahi) January 4, 2019
OSU’s offer from head coach Ryan Day evidently shook Vimahi’s recruitment up — on Jan. 14, he postponed his announcement until signing day. The assumption was that Ohio State would get an official visit, which Vimahi confirmed on Jan. 23.
— Enokk "Inoke" Vimahi (@enokkvimahi) January 23, 2019
Vimahi is the 247Sports composite’s No. 124 overall prospect, No. 7 offensive guard and No. 2 player in Hawaii. The Buckeyes currently have two offensive linemen — Mentor, Ohio, four-star offensive tackle Ryan Jacoby (6-5, 270) and Buford, Ga., five-star center Harry Miller (6-4, 310) — signed while Huntington (W.Va.) Spring Valley four-star offensive guard commitment Doug Nester (6-6 1/2, 305) and Indianapolis Ben Davis three-star offensive tackle target Dawand Jones (6-8, 360) are with Vimahi among position coach Greg Studrawa‘s short list of hopefuls to fill out the 2019 recruiting class.
“There’s a lot of factors that go into it,” Studrawa told BSB on Dec. 30. “You have to really study and be careful with the level of play he’s playing because a guy can look really, really good on film. And if you look at the competition level, it’s not very good, then you can easily get fooled. If the guy’s not from a program that really coaches him hard and getting after him, and demands, they won’t have success here because they know it’s demanding here. So there’s so many factors other than just turning on the film and watching the film. You have to get to know and unlock the kid inside and see how hard you’re going to be able to push him, how hard he wants success. That’s really the key and those things are hard sometimes.”
According to the 247Sports Crystal Ball, Vimahi has an 86-percent prediction for USC while a seven-percent chance favors OU. The remaining seven percent is undecided, with OSU in position to make its push.
“We have a few guys obviously that we’re close with,” Day said on Dec. 19, “and so we’ll just look to close those guys out.”