4-star all-purpose back David Williams from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania has named a top three, but there is one program is his final group that stands out above the rest—Ohio State.
According to Josh Moyer of ESPN.com, Williams' top three will consist of Arizona State, South Carolina and the aforementioned Ohio State. While all three are quality programs and formidable options for the 4-star running back, it's hard not to see what the Buckeyes and head coach Urban Meyer can offer Williams.
In fact, Williams' admiration for Meyer is a reason Ohio State finds itself in the running back's top three, per Moyer's report:
The 6-foot-1, 192-pound senior said he chose those three schools because he felt most comfortable there. He said Arizona State felt like a "mini-Los Angeles," he admired Urban Meyer, and the Gamecocks had a great game-day atmosphere.
At this point, Ohio State has to be considered one of the premier recruiting schools in the nation once again, and most of that has to do with Meyer.
There's no doubting the fact that he brings a whole lot of prestige and credibility back to the head coach position, and Ohio State's 12-0 record in his first season is just a sign of things to come in the Meyer era of Buckeyes football.
Right off the bat, Ohio State can offer Williams the chance to compete and win in the Big Ten, the opportunity to play for a nationally relevant program and the privilege of being coached by a coach who already has two national championships under his belt. If 2013 is any indication of what Meyer can do at Ohio State, the Buckeyes can also offer Williams the chance to compete for national championships.
Arizona State just can't offer those opportunities, and South Carolina—for as good as it's been—has to go through Georgia and Florida on a yearly basis just to have a shot in the SEC East, let alone win a championship.
If there's a close second for best fit or even a competitor for first, it's definitely South Carolina. Steve Spurrier's squad has been known to field some great running backs, and with Marcus Lattimore declaring for the NFL draft and Kenny Miles being a senior, there's going to be plenty of room opening up on their depth chart very soon (Arizona State has five halfbacks and running backs on their current depth chart).
As I pointed out, the Gamecocks have an extremely tough SEC East to fight through year after year, though, and they haven't necessarily shown the ability to rise to the occasion in big games.
Williams would have to wait at Ohio State behind Carlos Hyde (redshirt junior who could go to the NFL, but the chances are highly unlikely), redshirt sophomore Rod Smith and senior Jordan Hall, who was given a redshirt because of injury and will be back in 2013. There's also the presence of running backs like freshman Bri'onte Dunn or redshirt freshman Warren Ball on the roster, and Ohio State also has a commitment from 4-star 2013 running back Ezekiel Elliott.
That said, the chance to play for a perennial Big Ten contender would make that wait well worth it, and there's a lot Williams could learn in the process. He could take the time to refine his skills and learn under one of the best coaches in college football, and there's a very good possibility that when his time comes, he'll be playing for a contender.
He's also talented enough to compete for time within that group of running backs, so taking the shot to compete and play at OSU would be a great opportunity.
Finally, as if that weren't enough, Ohio State offers Williams the chance to play a bit closer to home. Columbus, Ohio is about two hours closer to Philadelphia than Columbia, South Carolina is, and it's infinitely closer than the state of Arizona.
Ohio State has quickly rebuilt under Meyer, and they'll provide a 4-star running back like Williams with a ton of opportunities. If the chance to win big and play for a great coach means anything, Ohio State should be the favorite in this instance. He'll also be a little bit closer to home, and he'll be able to compete and learn behind some very good running backs. Depth charts don't always mean everything in the decision making process, and in this case, all of the other positives the Buckeyes have to offer should be enough to overshadow that.
Plus, in time, he has the talent to end up being "the guy" in Ohio State's backfield, and that has to be a huge draw.
South Carolina and Arizona State are good options, but the Buckeyes are the best fit for him.