With National Signing Day about three weeks away (Feb. 3), several college football programs still continued to focus their attention on some uncommitted area seniors last week.
Several players in the 2010 class were receiving significant attention last week as some college programs visited their high schools. The Cincinnati Enquirer reported Winton Woods senior quarterback Dominique Brown garnered interest from the likes of Ohio State, Louisville, Cincinnati and Georgia Tech.
Brown, who orally committed to Cincinnati last year, is keeping his options open during the recruiting process. Brown was the state offensive co-player of the year in Division II last season. He rushed for 1,998 yards and 32 touchdowns and threw for 723 yards and seven touchdowns. He helped lead the Warriors to the Division II state title.
Another top recruit is Wyoming senior defensive lineman Jibreel Black, who is expected to take official visits to Michigan State, Michigan and Indiana in the next few weeks. Black, who orally committed to Cincinnati last fall, was expected to take an official visit to Cincinnati this past weekend.
Wyoming coach Bernie Barre told the Cincinnati Enquirer last week that Black wanted to see what his options were after Brian Kelly left Cincinnati for Notre Dame.
Barre told the Enquirer he wouldn’t be surprised if Black stayed with Cincinnati because he likes new coach Butch Jones. Black, who had 9.5 sacks and 61 tackles last season, also likes associate head coach Kerry Coombs, who helped recruit him earlier in the recruiting process.
There was still no word from West Chester Lakota West senior linebacker Jordan Hicks or Cincinnati St. Xavier senior offensive lineman Matt James, both of whom are among the nation's top uncommitted players.
James is expected to visit Florida on Saturday.
2. Hamilton football coach steps down: Longtime area head football coach Jim Place resigned Monday after he spent four seasons with Hamilton. The Big Blue was 2-8 this past season. Place, who also coached in the Dayton area prior to Hamilton, has a 223-161-3 overall record. Place said he doesn’t have any other immediate plans other than being a full-time grandfather and could possibly work part-time in another teaching or coaching position. Place was 16-24 in four years at Hamilton.
3. Richards wins 200th game: Mason boys basketball coach Greg Richards won his 200th game as the Comets defeated Fairfield 54-50 Tuesday night. Richards is in his 15th season and had an overall record of 200-110 after the win. He has led the Comets to three Fort Ancient Valley Conference championships and was named league coach of the year in 2005, 2006 and 2007. He led the Comets to a sectional title and district runner-up finish in 2008-09.
4. Reynolds reportedly out for season: Cincinnati Mount Notre Dame junior guard Kathryn Reynolds is out for the remainder of the season with a torn ACL, according to the Cincinnati Enquirer. Reynolds was reportedly hurt at a holiday tournament in Pickerington in late December. Reynolds was the team’s second-leading scorer. MND has won four consecutive Division I state titles.
5. State wrestling poll: St. Paris Graham is ranked No. 1 in the Division II state wrestling coaches poll. Graham has won nine consecutive Division II state titles and appears to be an early favorite again. Cincinnati Archbishop Moeller is ranked No. 4 in the Division I state poll, while Elder is No. 6. The state meet is March 4-6 at Ohio State University’s Value City Arena in Columbus.
Among the outstanding efforts this week
Jordan Sibert, Princeton boys basketball: The senior guard and Ohio State commit scored 19 points in the Vikings’ 57-54 win over Covington Holmes (Ky.) on Wednesday night. Both teams are considered to be among the best in Greater Cincinnati this season.
Ashley Schaefer, Sycamore girls basketball: The junior guard scored 18 points in the Aviators’ 45-30 win over visiting Hamilton. Schaefer had five rebounds and two steals for Sycamore, which plays at Mercy tonight.
Brianne Thornton, Xenia girls basketball: The junior guard had 24 points and three steals in a 71-32 win over visiting Lebanon. Xenia improved to 9-3 with the win and next plays at Fairborn on Jan. 13.
Southwest Ohio Swimming and Diving Classic: The 27th annual event takes place Jan. 16-17 at various locations in Cincinnati and Dayton. The diving finals are 9 a.m. Jan. 17 at the University of Cincinnati. The swimming finals are 6:30 p.m. Jan. 16 and 17 at St. Xavier High School’s Keating Natatorium. Approximately 112 schools and 2,900 swimmers and 170 divers are expected to compete.
Clayton Northmont at Huber Heights Wayne boys basketball, Friday: These two Greater Western Ohio Conference Central division teams continue to battle for the division title. Wayne (8-1, 3-0) leads the division. Wayne junior Travis Trice averaged 23.3 points through eight games. Northmont senior guard Steve Newell averaged 15.1 points through nine games.
Anderson senior offensive lineman Greg Mancz (6-5, 270) orally committed to Toledo on Tuesday night. Mancz also had offers from Air Force and Ohio University. … Cincinnati Withrow senior linebacker Anthony Berry could visit Akron later this month. … Trotwood-Madison track standout William Henry orally committed to Arizona State, according to the Dayton Daily News. … West Chester Lakota West junior lineman Ryan Kelly was recently offered by Louisville. … Colerain junior linebacker Jarrett Grace was recently offered by Notre Dame. He also has offers from Cincinnati, West Virginia, Indiana and Colorado.
Columbus Northland baseball player Chris Miko has signed to play at Youngstown State, according to the Columbus Dispatch. … Middletown senior defensive end Rashad Frazier has scheduled an official visit to Purdue the weekend of Jan. 15. … Cincinnati Aiken has named former Bengals defensive lineman Keith Rucker as its new coach. Rucker formerly coached at Mount Healthy.