Brian Hartline played wide receiver for Ohio State from 2006-2008 before being drafted in the 4th round of the 2009 NFL draft. Hartline had a somewhat successful NFL career posting two 1,000+ receiving yard seasons in his 7-year career. Two years after he finished his NFL career Brian Hartline was hired as an offensive quality control assistant at his alma mater. After one season in that position, he was named the interim wide receivers coach for the 2018 season due to Zach Smith being fired. It didn’t take long for Ohio State to make him the permanent wide receivers coach in December of 2018.
Hartline has been nothing short of outstanding in his first five seasons as the Ohio State wide receivers coach. Below we will take a look at all of his recruiting classes since he was hired for the role and a breakdown of each player. All of the rankings below are based on 247sports composite rankings.
2018 WR Class
Kamyrn Babb #73 Overall WR13
Babb was never able to pan out due to having four ACL injuries in his football career. It was unfortunate to see such a talented wide receiver suffer so many substantial injuries.
Chris Olave #399 Overall WR68
This was Hartline’s first gem wide receiver that he secured. Olave was not highly ranked coming out of high school, but Hartline developed him into becoming the 11th overall pick in the 2022 NFL draft. Olave also has the most receiving touchdowns in an Ohio State career.
2019 WR Class
Garrett Wilson #20 Overall WR2
Wilson was highly recruited coming out of high school and he did not disappoint one bit. Hartline quickly developed Wilson into becoming the 10th overall pick in the 2022 NFL draft after only three seasons at Ohio State.
Jameson Williams #82 Overall WR13
Williams was developed by Hartline for two seasons at Ohio State before transferring to Alabama for his junior year due to lack of targets. Williams quickly became the best WR in the SEC in his junior year posting 79 receptions for 1,572 yards and 15 touchdowns. He was drafted 12th overall in the 2022 NFL draft. (Yes, the last three WRs went three picks in a row)
2020 WR Class
Julian Flemming #3 Overall WR1
Flemming was highly ranked coming out of high school but hasn’t played too much in his first two years due to a crowded WR room. This season he will most likely get the chance to start and show why he was so highly recruited.
Jaxon Smith-Ngijba #29 Overall WR5
Smith-Njigba became a star wide receiver in his sophomore season at Ohio State. He’s already broken many Ohio State receiving records after only one year of starting. See here (Jaxon Smith-Njigba Has a Real Chance to Win The Heisman Award – Gridiron Heroics) why I think he can win the Heisman Award in his Junior season. Smith-Njigba is already being projected in the top five picks for the 2023 NFL Draft.
Gee Scott JR. #66 Overall WR10
Scott switched to tight end after just one season at wide receiver realizing that there are too many talented ones ahead of him. With Ruckert leaving Ohio State we should see Scott get a lot of starting reps at tight end next season.
Mookie Cooper #93 Overall WR16
Cooper transferred to Missouri after just one season of getting zero playing time at Ohio State.
2021 WR Class
Emeka Egbuka #10 Overall WR1
Egbuka didn’t play much in his freshman year. He did have one big play in a game against Akron where he caught a pass for 85 yards. He will look to have a breakout Sophomore season.
Marvin Harrison JR. #97 Overall WR14
Marvin is the son of former NFL star WR Marvin Harrison. Harrison JR didn’t play much in his freshman season, but he started in the season finale against Utah. He posted 6 receptions for 71 yards and three touchdowns in that game and will look to build on that. Harrison JR will likely start this season and we should see a breakout year in his sophomore campaign.
Jaylen Ballard #99 Overall WR15
Ballard didn’t play much at all in his freshman year and will most likely be buried on the depth chart for his sophomore year.
2022 WR Class
All of these wide receivers will be Freshman in the fall of 2022 and will likely not receive too much playing time due to a stacked WR room.
Kaleb Brown #79 Overall WR13
Kyion Grayes #88 Overall WR14
Caleb Burton #132 Overall WR21
Kojo Antwi #151 Overall WR26
2023 WR Class
All of these wide receivers will enter their senior year of High school in the fall of 2022. Hartline has received a verbal commitment to play for Ohio State in 2023 from all of these wideouts. Hartline secured commitments on back-to-back-to-back days from Inniss, Tate and Rodgers in late June. (three top 10 WRs)
Brandon Inniss #18 Overall WR2
Carnell Tate # 28 Overall WR3
Noah Rodgers # 51 Overall WR9
Bryson Rodgers #270 Overall WR32
Hartline has secured 15 wide receivers that are in the top 100 overall rankings in just six recruiting classes. He has developed three first round wide receivers in just two recruiting classes that have been eligible for the NFL Draft (you must be in college for three seasons to enter NFL draft). High School wide receivers are taking note of Hartline’s capability of developing players into first round wide receivers. Hartline has been given another responsibility for the 2022 season after Head Coach Ryan Day named him the passing game coordinator. This will allow him to be more involved in the offensive play calling. Hartline will continue to develop Ohio State wide receivers into 1st round picks for years to come. The only worry Ohio State fans should have is another college giving him a head coaching offer that is too good to pass on.