A total of 48 schools offered Amir Riep, a cornerback out of Colerain High School in Cincinnati, Ohio, and Saturday the four-star recruit decided his future with one simple scarlet hat on his head that donned the infamous gray 'O' of the Ohio State Buckeyes.
Eleven of fourteen teams in the Southeastern Conference offered the top prospect among the total number of scholarship offers received. The only schools Riep did not receive an offer from in the SEC included the University of South Carolina, Texas A&M University and the University of Arkansas.
"Everybody in the country kind of wanted him to come play for him," Riep's father, Maurice, said. "I did what a parent is supposed to do. I got him out there to see everything from Florida to the Midwest. We went everywhere, just trying to help him with this process."
Riep marks the sixteenth commitment of the Buckeyes' 2017 recruiting class, which further solidifies Urban Meyer's overall class as No. 1 in the nation, according to 247Sports recruit rankings.
The 6-foot-1 and 185-pound reigning defensive player of the year received second-team All-Ohio selection his junior season. In addition, he accumulated seven interceptions and two forced fumbles. And Riep still has one more year to play at Colerain before he departs for Columbus.
"It's a Cincinnati kid going to Ohio State," Colerain head coach Tom Bolden said. "It's special; it has meaning. Those kids at Ohio State when they're done playing at Ohio State they're legends in Ohio for a long, long time for the rest of their lives."
Colerain came off a 12-2 season that ended in a Division I state semifinal appearance. The Cardinals are expected to be one of the top-ranked teams in the city and they will open their 2016-2017 campaign with a spot in the 19th annual Skyline Chili Crosstown Showdown at Nippert Stadium on Aug. 27 with kickoff set for 1 p.m. ET.
Former Colerain head coach and current Ohio State corner backs coach Kerry Coombs played an integral role in securing the recruit. One could argue that Riep's and Coombs' relationship is what spiraled Riep to want to spend his football and academic career with the Buckeyes. Nonetheless, Coombs tweeted his excitement after Riep's commitment and what's a Buckeyes' tweet without the 'O' incorporated into it.
But the Buckeyes aren't satisfied just yet. On top of Riep, Ohio State has its sight set on other elite corner back prospects, including four-star Lamont Wade and five-star Darnay Holmes. Riep is just one step in front of other possible commits.
"It's a dream come true," Riep said. "Always watching Ohio State and now to be a part of it is great."