Speedy South Bend Linebacker Commits to Ohio State
By Tony Gerdeman
COLUMBUS, Ohio - With two more commits in the span of a couple of days, and both time and room running out, South Bend, Indiana, linebacker David Perkins (6-2 225) pledged his commitment to Ohio State on Wednesday.
Perkins, the 22nd member of the 2012 recruiting class, had made his official visit to Columbus this past weekend, and while he needed a couple of days to sort out his thoughts, he obviously didn't need to think too hard.
Perkins, whose nickname is "Boom", had originally committed to Notre Dame in June, then abruptly reopened his recruitment in October. Ohio State got in on him late, but late was just soon enough for Rivals' 11th-ranked athlete in the 2012 class.
"I feel like when I got on campus, it was just right," Perkins told Columbus' NBC4 on Wednesday.
"They say when you get on campus and you get that feeling, you just know that that's the place. When I got on campus, that's what I felt."
Perkins is also a highly-touted running back, and a talented receiver and pass rusher as well. Because of his versatility—and the 4.43 he ran at a combine—Rivals and ESPN actually rate him as an "athlete" instead of a linebacker.
Rest assured, however, he's coming to Ohio State to play linebacker.
"I just happen to be walking into a great linebacker situation," he told NBC4.
"I'm a high-level competitor. That's what I do. I play with a lot of swagger. I carry myself well. That's what I live for, and I'm ready for that. Now it's just 'bring on the competition.'”
With Perkins' notable 40 time, it's not a surprise that he can be quite impactful rushing from the edge, but his speed will look to be utilized all over the field.
Urban Meyer wants his team to get faster, and this commitment accomplishes that desire.
Perkins selected Ohio State over offers from California, Arizona, Illinois, LSU, Michigan State, Oregon and Tennessee, just to name a few.
As it turns out, when Ohio State came calling, it was an offer that he just couldn't refuse.
"The people there are great, and I feel like there's just so much wisdom and knowledge about the game in that building that you can't let it pass. You can't pass it up."
Not even the NCAA sanctions and the recent struggles could deter Perkins from committing to Ohio State.
"Ohio State as a whole is always going to be good," he explained.
"When you look back in the past when they have a down year, no matter who's running it, they always bounce back. That's just Ohio State. It's rich tradition. They got a lot of people that know what they're doing."
Those people who "know what they're doing" now have a 22-member recruiting class, with the possibility of anywhere from three to six more, depending on how things shake out.
With Perkins now in the fold with fellow linebackers Joshua Perry and Luke Roberts, the Buckeyes are better off at linebacker than they were a week ago, but there is still room to add one or two more.
A pair of Penn State commits (does this sound familiar) out of West Roxbury, Massachusetts are visiting Ohio State this week, including linebacker Camren Williams.
Williams (6-2 215), Scout's 16th-ranked outside linebacker, has already taken his official visit to Columbus, but is tagging along with teammate Armani Reeves, who is making a midweek official visit.
Reeves (5-9 185) is Scout's sixth-ranked cornerback in the nation and could end up as a package deal with Williams, who is likely to commit to Ohio State eventually.
Urban Meyer is looking for a speedster at linebacker who can come in and play right away. The Buckeyes don't necessarily need a freshman like Perkins to step in and start, but there will be a sizable opportunity for a playmaking linebacker in this Silver Bullet defense.
With a similar skillset to Ryan Shazier, it seems like Perkins would fit that description very well.
Scout: 4-star OLB; 22nd-ranked OLB; 212th-ranked prospect overall.
Rivals: 4-star ATH; 11th-ranked ATH; 159th-ranked prospect overall.
ESPN: 4-star ATH; 40th-ranked ATH; Not ranked in ESPNU 150.
247 Sports: 4-star OLB; 16th-ranked OLB; 177th-ranked prospect overall.
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