Early Signing Period: Four-Star DL Will Smith Jr. Signs With Ohio State

By December 21, 2022 (7:46 am)Early Signing Period

Get to know Dublin (Ohio) Coffman four-star defensive lineman Will Smith Jr., who signed his national letter of intent with Ohio State on Wednesday.

Height, Weight: 6-3, 260.

247 Composite Rankings: He’s rated as the 260th overall prospect, 36th-best defensive lineman and the No. 8 recruit out of Ohio.

Commitment Date: Will Smith Jr. committed to Ohio State on Jan. 23, 2022.

Other Offers: Ball State, Boston College, Duke, Georgia Tech, Illinois, Kentucky, Marshall, Miami (OH), Northwestern, Pittsburgh, Toledo, West Virginia.

How he did in high school: Smith helped led Coffman to a 7-4 record before falling to Marysville in the first round of the OHSAA playoffs. He finished the season with 47 tackles (14 for loss) with five sacks in 10 games, and was named All-Central District Division I Defensive Player of the Year.

Why he committed to Ohio State: Smith is an Ohio State legacy, the son of legendary Ohio State defensive lineman Will Smith, who played for the Buckeyes from 2000-03 and helped win Ohio State win the national championship in 2002 before being named a first-team All-American the following season.

As for his son, Smith Jr. took several unofficial visits to Ohio State during the 2021 season and was formally offered on Jan. 14, and it was clearly one he was waiting on as he committed to the Buckeyes just days later on Jan. 23.

Where he fits in for 2023: While Ohio State has utilized a large rotation on the defensive line this season, it still did not feature many of the freshman defensive lineman such as Omari Abor, Caden Curry, Kenyatta Jackson or Hero Kanu, and it’s hard to see Smith – who will likely line up at defensive tackle – seeing the field in a meaningful capacity with the depth ahead of him as well as with the defensive lineman coming in alongside him in 2023.

Still, it can be an important season for growth as he gets acclimated to Ohio State and prepares to take a step forward in 2024.

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