Every year, there’s at least one player who impresses the Ohio State coaching staff enough at the June Senior Advanced Camp sessions to gain a coveted scholarship offer to play for the Buckeyes. Sam Longo was the lucky recipient of such an offer this year, and he officially became a Buckeye a short time ago.
Sam Longo (6-6, 280), the offensive tackle from Bellbrook (Ohio) High School, signed his letter of intent today and officially became the newest Buckeye in the class of 2009 for Ohio State’s football program. He’s excited that this day finally arrived.
“It feels great,” said Longo, who carried over 30 scholarship offers into his senior season. “I’ve been waiting for this day for over six months now. It’s great to know that I’m that much closer to college now. It’s going to be great and I’m looking forward to starting it.”
The 2009 class for the Ohio State is another top 10 haul nationally, possibly top five. That fact has not eluded Longo.
“It definitely feels great,” said Longo. “To know that high caliber of players are going to be going to school with you… one, it’s going to make you and better player and, two, it’s going to make the team better. With that kind of talent, who knows what the limits are the next couple of years? I’m going to work hard and maybe be able to crack the two deep my freshman year, but I’m alright with a redshirt. I just want to go in there and contribute to the team”
Some services project Longo as a tackle and others say he will be a guard at the next level. Longo isn’t too worried about where he plays in Columbus.
“(OSU offensive coordinator Jim) Bollman thinks I can play anywhere on the line,” said Longo, whose dad was a Buckeye football player in the 1980s. “He thinks I’m a three-position player, that I could play tackle, center or guard. I guess we’ll see when I get there. If they wanted me to play defense, I’d play defense but they haven’t talked to me about that.”
While the coaches think that he could be a jack-of-all-trades on the line, Longo would prefer to be placed on the end of the line.
“I prefer being a tackle,” said Longo. “But if I get there and they need me at guard, then I’m a guard at the college level.”
About two weeks ago, Bollman and head coach Jim Tressel were doing an in-home visit with Longo, something that he was at ease with.
“I enjoyed it,” Longo explained. “I’m not a big, talkative guy and Coach Tressel talks a lot so that helped. My mom is a talker, too. When you have someone that like in your house, it’s definitely surreal just walking around with him. It was a fun experience and I enjoyed it.”
Last summer was an important one for Longo, who was “on the bubble,” in the coaching staff’s view, between being offered or not being offered a scholarship. It was Longo’s decision to attend the Ohio State football camp in June that locked up the offer for the lineman.
It was not easy as Longo had to suspend a series of college campus visits that had him on the road for over two weeks. He commented on that at the time.
“After going to camp, I thought I performed well enough to earn it, but you just never know,” Longo said at the time. “Hearing it from him, I can’t explain how great it felt.”
It looks like the change in travel plans paid off for Longo and the Buckeyes.
The Sam Longo File
Here is a look at Bellbrook (Ohio) High offensive lineman Sam Longo:
* Height, Weight: 6-6, 280 pounds
* 40-Yard Time: 4.89 seconds
* Vital Statistics: Longo saw some varsity playing time as a freshman. He was a starter at either guard or tackle since his sophomore year. He most likely projects as a guard at the college level. Longo was a second-team pick on the ONN/Ohio High All-Ohio team, although he dealt with a stress fracture in his foot as a senior and was limited to six games. He did not allow a sack in the games he played. He is set to play for the Ohio squad in the Big 33 Football Classic in June. He comes from the same high school as current OSU linebacker Austin Spitler.
* Rankings: He is rated as the No. 16 overall senior prospect in Ohio, according to Ohio High magazine. Also rated as the No. 11 overall prospect in the state, according to The Ohio Football Recruiting News. Longo is ranked as the No. 35 prospect in the Midwest by SuperPrep. He is rated as the nation’s 27th-best offensive guard prospect by ESPN.com.
* College Choices: Verbaled to Ohio State on July 3, picking the Buckeyes over Penn State, Cincinnati, Nebraska, Boston College and Miami (Fla.).
* Academics: Graduated with a 3.0 GPA and scored a 21 on the ACT.
* Why he picked Ohio State: “It was everything. The coaches, the people, you name it. It’s a great place to be.”
* How he figures to fit in at Ohio State: “I talked to Coach Bollman and he said that I could play anywhere so I’m just going to go in there with the right attitude.”
* When he is enrolling: June 22.
* Projected uniform number at Ohio State: “I guess 59 might be open and I’d kind of like to keep the same number but really, I really don’t care what my number is at all.”
* Hobbies: “Just hanging out. Being outdoors; hunting and fishing and stuff like that.”