June 3, 2013

Thompson feels at home at Ohio State

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COLUMBUS, Ohio - Sunday was a chance for most of the Buckeyes recruiting class to converge on the Ohio State campus and participate in the Nike Football Training Camp and more importantly have an opportunity to grow closer as a recruiting class, a class that stands at nine at the moment and looking to add more in the coming months.

Lombard (Ill.) defensive end Dylan Thompson has become one of the vocal leaders of the class but the 6-foot-4, 271-pounder is more than just talk as he was one of the best defensive ends at the camp and earned a ticket to "The Opening" with his performance.

Thompson joined several of his fellow commits on the fields of the Woody Hayes facility on Sunday (Damon Webb, Kyle Trout, Kyle Berger, Parris Campbell, Dante Booker and Lonnie Johnson (did not participate due to an injury)) and when the group was not running through drills or taking instruction they were taking a chance to become closer as a recruiting class and help get in the ear of some top uncommitted talent for the upcoming classes.

"There are a couple (class of 2015s) and they would be almost dumb not to come to Ohio State because we are going to win the National Championship this year and we are going to be the next powerhouse, the next five years Ohio State is going to be one of the best schools in the country without a doubt," Thompson said after the camp.

One player that caught Thompson's eye was Danish-born defensive tackle Hjalte Froholdt out of the class of 2015. The Buckeyes are one of several schools that have offered the rising talent and Thompson believed that Froholdt could be a major player by the time that he is ready to sign with a school.

"He was a complete monster, he is what I wish I could have been when I was a sophomore," Thompson joked. "He is my height and about 275 pounds, going into my junior year I was about 250 pounds, if I had 25 more pounds and speed like I have now, that would have been awesome."

Thompson knew that he was going to have some big players in his group and no player was bigger than Rivals.com No. 1 rated defensive end Da'Shawn Hand who lined up next to him on several occasions on drills. Thompson admitted that he wasn't sure what to expect from Hand but all of the hype was deserved after seeing him go through drills.

"It was cool working with Da'Shawn today and I learned a lot from him today," Thompson said. "He is a great athlete and I thought he might be a little overrated like a No. 1 player should be but he is all real and does everything perfectly. He is a great athlete."

It was just as important to Thompson however to get a chance to spend time with his future teammates, and he believes the bonds are already starting to form more than a year in advance to when the whole class would report as true freshmen in the summer of 2014.

"It is huge, we have already developed such a great relationship with myself, Kyle (Berger), Kyle (Trout), Parris (Campbell), Dante (Booker), all of them," Thompson said. "We have a group chat going on and we are talking to people, it is like we have been best friends since we were five years old. We talk to each other like we have known each other forever. I can't wait until we are freshmen here and it is time to dominate the NCAA."

And every trip to Ohio State feels like home to Thompson, even though he joked that he was craving a Chicago-style hot dog after camp. All joking aside, Thompson believes he made the choice that is best for him and said that he wouldn't want to be anywhere else.

"The first visit felt like home, I walked in the front door of the Woody Hayes center and saw the trophies, saw the banner for the undefeated season and I am like, 'This is where I want to be for the next four years, I can see myself here and there is nowhere else I want to be and these are the guys that I want to play along side.'" Thompson said. "I can't wait to play here in two years."


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