Unlike most football players, running back TreVeyon Henderson isn’t facing uncertainty regarding his upcoming season.
The five-star Ohio State commit knows he won’t have one.
Henderson lives in Virginia, which has moved its high school football season to the spring. By then, the country’s No. 1 running back in the 247sports.com’s composite rankings expects to be at Ohio State as an early enrollee.
"I’m taking it pretty well," Henderson told The Dispatch on Wednesday. "It hasn’t hit me yet that I won’t be playing my senior ball at my high school. I’m just ready to get prepared for the next level and working even harder."
Henderson, from Hopewell outside of Richmond, considered transferring out of state in hopes of being able to play his senior season.
"It was like going through the recruiting process again," he said. "I had so many people hitting me up, trying to tell me to come to their high school. But it was just too much. I’d have to see if my credits transferred. Where would I be staying? Things like that. So I just thought I should stay in place."
Henderson tries to see the silver lining. He won’t have to risk sustaining a serious injury or even the wear and tear that’s a fact of life at his position.
But it’s not easy.
"I really wanted to play football," Henderson said. "I don’t think I could go through a year without getting on the field, but, shoot, I’ll just have to deal with it and get through it."
Henderson scored 53 touchdowns last year and ran for 2,424 yards for Hopewell.
His coach, Ricky Irby, wishes he would have Henderson for his senior season but is grateful for the time they did share.
"He’s a better kid than he is a player, and that’s saying something because he’s an unbelievable talent." Irby said. "He’s a generational-type talent, and the things that go along with him make him even more special his work ethic, his character, his leadership.
"I’ve never seen a kid like that. Never coached one and never coached against one that has the talent he has. He’s a very driven, motivated young man who wants to be the best player in the world."
Henderson committed to Ohio State on March 27, just a couple of weeks after the pandemic forced a travel shutdown. Henderson pledged to become a Buckeye without having visited the campus.
"I’m not really worried about it," he said. "I’ve seen the environment. The environment is great."
Even if travel doesn’t open up, Henderson said his commitment to Ohio State is solid.
"I haven’t even been thinking about decommitting from Ohio State and committing to another school," he said. "That hasn’t been on my mind at all. It’s all Ohio State."
Henderson said football is only one component in his decision, that the brotherhood among players, educational opportunities and program to prepare for life after his playing career were more important.
Henderson said other coaches have continued to pursue him, but he said he doesn’t respond.
"I’m like 100% committed to Ohio State," Henderson said.
Irby said he would be shocked if that changed. He said that even in youth ball, Henderson resisted switching to better teams because he was loyal to his teammates.
"One of the things I talk about with the guys here," Irby said, "is to do as much research as you can, but once you make that decision, let’s make that decision. I’ve never had a kid decommit here at Hopewell. I think your word is important."
Henderson is a big part of an Ohio State recruiting class that’s top-ranked in the nation. Though the 19 members of the 2021 class are scattered throughout the country and can’t physically get together, Henderson said it is a tight group. He said they all communicate daily on a group chat.
"I’m very excited to get to Ohio State," Henderson said. "I can’t wait. I think about it every day."