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Thursday, September 6, 2012
Updated: September 11, 4:39 PM ET
Entrance Exam: Pat Elflein

By Brad Bournival
BuckeyeNation

Entrance Exam is a series at BuckeyeNation where we chat with incoming freshmen in Ohio State athletics.

Offensive guard Pat Elflein wasted no time in committing to Ohio State, becoming the 11th member of the 2012 class 14 months ago as the crown jewel of Luke Fickell's commits.

As a result, he became the second first-team Division I All-Ohioan to join the Buckeyes' recruiting class -- Pickerington Central's Jacoby Boren was the other.

Ranked the 26th-best guard in the nation by ESPN, Elflein was a four-year letterman on the gridiron and earned 12 varsity letters at Pickerington North.

Elflein's wrestling background -- he was the Ohio Capital Conference Wrestler of the Year after going undefeated in the regular season as a senior -- gives him the low center of gravity vital for his position.

In picking Ohio State, Elflein turned down offers from Akron, Bowling Green, Buffalo, Cincinnati, Indiana, Miami (Ohio), Northwestern, Purdue and Toledo.

Elflein was attractive to the Buckeyes for his run-blocking and explosion off the snap.

With the athleticism and footwork to play offensive tackle, he'll likely stay at guard.

His calling card is the ability to pull and trap, but his ability to get to the second level and pick up linebackers will be critical for Ohio State's future offensive line.

BN: Why did you sign with Ohio State?

Elflein: Because Ohio State is Ohio State. They have a great tradition here, a great coaching staff, and they know how to win.

BN: When was the first time you realized, this is big-time college football and not high school anymore?

Elflein: When we started working out with Coach [Mickey] Marotti. It's not easy. And when I got to put the jersey on for pictures and I saw my name was on it, I was like, 'Wow.' It was a shocking moment.

BN: What does Urban Meyer mean to you as a coach and as a person?

Elflein: He's a great guy that really takes care of his players. He really cares about them and he knows how to win football games.

BN: What are you expecting out of Ohio State?

Elflein: I want to get my degree first and foremost. I want to graduate and win some championships in these next four years.

BN: What is Ohio State doing in four years?

Elflein: We're winning a lot of games.