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March 23, 2004

Buckeyes, Wolverines to battle - again

Offensive lineman Zach Hennis plays for one of the smaller schools in the state of Ohio - Jonathan Alder in Plain City, not too far from Columbus. But recruiters know all about Hennis and are showing him plenty of interest, and for good reason.

The 6-foot-8 and 300-pound Hennis is one of the state's biggest prospects. He was a small school all-Ohio selection his sophomore year, then duplicated the honor his junior season.

"He just dominates people at this level," Jonathan Alder coach Barry Blackstone said. "He is really coming into his own. He has great desire. He is just scratching the surface of his potential."

What does Hennis need to work on?

"We don't pass much, so that's one area he will have to develop," Blackstone said. "But he is working very hard."

Hennis, who bench-presses 365 pounds and squats 440, has been a varsity starter at offensive guard since his freshman season. He helped lead Jonathan Alder to a 9-2 record during his junior season. On size alone Hennis would draw interest from recruiters. So it's no surprise some of country's top programs know about this small school standout.

"I'm interested in Michigan, Ohio State, Notre Dame, Florida State, and Tennessee," Hennis said. "I want to look around. I went to a Michigan junior day. I really enjoyed it."

The in-state Buckeyes are also very much involved, setting up what could be another classic Buckeye-Wolverine battle.

"I might go to an Ohio State spring practice," he said. "I want to check it out. I went to the Ohio State-Purdue game. It was fun. I sat in the front row. Michigan, Ohio State, and Notre Dame are my top three."

What will be important to Hennis when it comes time to select a college?

"I'm looking for academics, athletics, and location," Hennis said. "Those are the top three things I'll look at."

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