St. Vincent-St. Mary junior football player Dante Booker already has several Division I college scholarship offers.

Booker, an outside linebacker, now has another distinction: He’s ranked the No. 1 player in Ohio in the class of 2014, according to

“I think it is a great thing,” St. V-M coach Dan Boarman said. “I still believe his best football is ahead of him. He expects to grow physically and mentally in the game of football and I know he will, too. It will be interesting to see where he is as a senior.”

Booker, who is 6-foot-3 and 215 pounds, has offers from Ohio State, Michigan, Nebraska, Penn State, Illinois and Indiana and several others have shown interest.

“Once Ohio State and Michigan offer, they all come in,” Boarman said. “Various Big Ten and MAC schools are interested.”

Boarman said a few other Fighting Irish players are receiving a lot of interest. Senior wide receiver Jordan Hargrove has offers from Ohio Dominican and Eastern Illinois, junior wide receiver/quarterback/defensive back Aaron Bushner has an offer from Toledo and Akron has made an offer to senior wide receiver/cornerback Fransohn Bickley.

Top seniors to watch

ESPN recently released its Top 300 national list for the class of 2013 and three area players made the list.

Massillon cornerback Gareon Conley is the area’s highest-rated recruit at No. 63. Marlington running back/linebacker Dymonte Thomas is ranked No. 94 and Hudson linebacker/running back Ben Gedeon is ranked No. 278.

Conley, Thomas and Gedeon have all orally committed to Michigan.

Midnight practice

The Coventry football team will host a midnight practice dubbed “Win the Day” to kick off two-a-days for the 2012 season.

Comets coach Jerami Hodgkinson said the event will be held at Coventry Memorial Stadium and start at 11 p.m. Sunday. Hodgkinson and his staff will direct players in a practice from midnight to 12:45 a.m. Monday.

Spectators will be admitted free. There will be a football rally, a levy rally and a 50-50 sale. Vendors will be in attendance and some money raised will go toward the Coventry school system.

Coventry has a combined 5.99-mill levy and bond issue on the Aug. 7 ballot.

Thomas commits to Tiffin

Matt Thomas, a 2012 Springfield graduate, has committed to continue his academic and baseball careers at Tiffin University.

Thomas played first base and catcher for the Spartans. He had 22 hits as a senior with 10 doubles and one triple. He also scored 16 runs, had 18 RBI and stole five bases.

“Matt has been with my program since we started four years ago,” Springfield coach Scott Swan said. “He has been the heart and soul of our team, exemplifying everything that we’ve encouraged; hard work, discipline and outstanding effort. He was a great senior, always leading by example. He will be greatly missed. I believe that he will be successful in college, because no one will outwork him.”

UA baseball adds one

Jackson senior right-handed pitcher Jonny Nottingham has committed to continue his academic and baseball careers at the University of Akron, according to Prep Baseball Report.

Nottingham compiled a 6-1 record as a junior for the Polar Bears with a 2.40 ERA. He struck out 54 batters in 39 innings pitched.

Michael Beaven can be reached at 330-996-3829 or Read the high school blog at Follow him on Twitter at and on Facebook at