Quinn Ewers, the No. 1 recruit in the 247Sports composite ratings, will forgo his senior season of high school football to enroll at Ohio State. The news was first reported by Justin Wells of Inside Texas.
Ewers is expected to announce his decision today. The Buckeyes open fall camp Tuesday.
Reclassifying in this case would not be as radical as it seems on the surface. Ewers turned 18 on March 15 and needs just one core English credit to receive his high school diploma. (Pete Thamel reports it's "highly unlikely" Ewers joins the team by the start of camp.)
As reported last week, the crux of the decision centers around a niche beverage brand. Holy Kombucha offered the quarterback an equity stake in exchange for his endorsement; the deal, as reported, could be worth seven figures. Obviously, such an arrangement would just be the tip of the NIL iceberg for blonde-mulleted gunslinger viewed as the top quarterback recruit since Trevor Lawrence.
As a Buckeye, Ewers will be free to cash in on marketing opportunities that Texas state law would bar him from enjoying as a high school student.
In just two seasons of varsity football, Ewers has a chance to go down as one of the most impactful in all of high school football. His decommitment from Texas in October signaled the beginning of the end of the Tom Herman era in Austin, and now his opting out of his senior season could represent an inflection point in the development of elite quarterbacks.
By essentially becoming a professional quarterback a year early, Ewers loses up to 16 games and hundreds of live reps while also beginning his eligibility clock a year earlier than anticipated. Talented as Ewers may be, it's unlikely a true freshman beats out the expected starter CJ Stroud -- a high 4-star recruit in his own right with 18 months on campus -- after one training camp.
Needless to say, the move will also be devastating for Southlake Carroll's Texas state title chances. Ewers battled through injuries to lead the Dragons to their first title game since 2011 this past January, where they lost to Austin Westlake, led by their own elite QB recruit in Clemson commit Cade Klubnik. All signs pointed to a rematch in the 6A Division I title game, which, if it came to pass -- Dodge vs. Dodge, Ewers vs. Klubnik -- would rank among the most anticipated in high school football history.
But by enrolling at Ohio State now, Ewers will soak up a year of college development -- working with college coaches, practicing with college players -- even if he doesn't win the starting job. It also pushes him one year closer to the ultimate pay day: the NFL.
The move, if successful, could inspire copycats at the high school level and lead the state of Texas and others with NIL laws on the books to amend those laws, potentially allowing high school athletes to receive the same privileges college athletes have enjoyed for the past month.
Quite a legacy for a guy who played two seasons of varsity football.