No.1 Portal Player Caleb Downs Prefers Ohio With Ryan Day, Prioritizing Living Space Over Kalen Deboer’s Alabama

Published 01/23/2024, 11:17 AM EST

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In the ongoing trend of talented players entering the transfer portal, Ohio State has significantly added to its roster. Former five-star safety Caleb Downs, previously with the SEC champion Alabama Crimson Tide, announced his decision to join the Buckeyes on Friday. Downs’ move follows the retirement of legendary coach Nick Saban, prompting several key players to seek new opportunities. 

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There has been a significant change in Ohio State, since coach Ryan Day relinquished play-calling duties as he focuses on bolstering talent on both the roster and coaching staff, aiming to propel the Buckeyes back to the summit of the Big Ten. Despite initial expectations that he might opt for his birth state by joining Georgia, given his hometown’s proximity to Athens, the decision to don the Scarlet and Gray is helmed by a curious cause. 

Caleb Downs picks accommodation over hometown

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Amid significant interest from prestigious programs, including the Georgia Bulldogs, Caleb Downs caught everyone off guard with his choice to commit to Ohio State. Contrary to early speculations of joining Georgia, where his former defensive backs coach Travaris Robinson is currently on staff, Downs took an unexpected turn toward Columbus. There is a surprising cause to support his decision, however. It turns out that Down’s apartment size offered by OSU far beats the one provided by UGA, and the young athlete decided to side with the living space he preferred. 

Bill O’Brien has been appointed as Ohio State’s new offensive coordinator, relieving head coach Ryan Day of play-calling duties. The new Ohio State coaching staff seized the opportunity to recruit Downs and after an in-home visit, Downs committed to the Buckeyes. There are circulating speculations hinting at a potential $3.5 million payment to Downs as part of the transfer deal with Ohio State. With three years of eligibility left, his arrival is anticipated to bring immediate impact to the burgeoning Ohio State defense under the guidance of coordinator Jim Knowles. Widely regarded as the No. 1 player in the transfer portal, Downs’ decision adds a significant boost to the Buckeyes’ roster and creates ripples of speculation in college football circles. His move adds to the pool of talented players who have deserted Alabama post the coaching change. 

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Alabama coaching change results in the reshuffling of talented players 

Ohio State is gearing up for the highly anticipated 2024 season with strategic coaching additions, including former Alabama offensive coordinator Bill O’Brien. The Buckeyes’ quarterback lineup blends experience and promising talent with transfers like Julian Sayin and emerging players such as Will Howard, Devin Brown, Lincoln Kienholz, and Air Noland. The addition of Sayin, a former five-star quarterback initially committed to Alabama, underscores Ohio State’s appeal in attracting top talent.

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This trend extends beyond the quarterback position, with notable transfers like safety Caleb Downs and center Seth McLaughlin choosing to join the Buckeyes for the upcoming season. With O’Brien’s guidance, Ohio State is poised for a dynamic and competitive season. The strategic moves reflect the program’s commitment to excellence, setting the stage for an exciting journey in the pursuit of championship aspirations.

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Written by:

Anushka Laha

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?When the going gets tough, the tough get going!? -Knute Rockne This has always been the essence of my personality and the way I perceive and approach things in life. I can readily identify and relate to the finer on and off-the-field nuances, which elevates my writing ability to a whole new level. Being an artist at heart, words come to me as freely as do colors in my paintings.
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Edited by:

Tripti Sarda

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