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Ohio State track brings in ‘best recruiting class’ in years

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When announcing the signings of nine recruits who will be coming to Ohio State as members of the men’s track and field team next season, OSU interim coach Ed Beathea said he believes the future of the team he is coaching is bright.

“This is the best recruiting class we have put together in my time at Ohio State,” Beathea said in a press release.

OSU will welcome a broad range of recruits in its incoming class. The class includes five athletes from Ohio, but also adds four out-of-state recruits. Among the class are three distance runners, two sprinters, one hurdler, two throwers and one multi-event athlete.

Donovan Robertson, a hurdler from Berea, Ohio, headlines the class. Robertson, the 2011 Ohio Gatorade Track and Field Athlete of the Year, has many accomplishments to his name. This year, Robertson set the indoor national record in the 60-meter hurdles, completing the event in 7.57 seconds. Robertson is also the defending state outdoor champion in the 110-meter hurdles and 300-meter hurdles, and was named to the 2011 USA Today All-USA track and field team.

Beathea said he recognized the significance of signing Robertson.

“Donovan is one of the most talented signees in OSU history,” Beathea said in the press release. “He will have an instant impact on our conference and the country.”

The group of in-state recruits is also highlighted by distance runners. Steven Weaver, from Napoleon, was the 2011 Division II state champion in the outdoor mile run and in cross country. The team also added Nicolas Pupino of Copley and Jordan Redd of Fairborn.

Jack Kincade from Hilliard is the fifth in-state recruit in the class. Kincade scored 6,243 points in the decathlon last season, which was the sixth-best decathlon score among all high school athletes nationwide in 2011.

OSU also lured four recruits from farther east to come west.

Champ Page, a sprinter from Marlboro, Md., is a six-time Maryland state champion. Page finished the 2012 indoor season with times that ranked second nationally in the 300-meter dash with 33.93 seconds, third in the 500 meter with 63.71 seconds, and 11th in the 400 meter with 48.28 seconds. Justin Burke, a sprinter from Virginia Beach, Va., is a two-time defending outdoor state champion in the 100-meter dash, as well as in the 200 meter and 400 meter.

Two throwers will also come to the Buckeyes from other states. Joseph Velez, from Providence, R.I., is joined by javelin thrower Billy Stanley from South Park, Pa.

Assistant coach Kevin Mannon praised both incoming throwers.

“(Velez) has the ability to make an immediate impact on the Big Ten and NCAA championships in 2013,” Mannon said in a press release. “Billy has already thrown a mark that can score at the Big Ten championships, so we expect him to be a major player for us in 2013.”

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