Kettering (Ohio) Archbishop Alter 2022 linebacker C.J. Hicks just keeps moving up the recruiting rankings. After checking in at 117th in the 247Sports composite rankings on July 29, 2020, the Buckeye commit has almost exclusively seen his star rise in the last nine months, maneuvering first into the top 100 on Aug. 31, the top 50 on Nov. 23 and now hitting his highest mark yet.
Hicks slotted in at No. 18 overall on the April 9 update of the composite rankings with a .9881 rating, making him the third-highest ranked recruit in Ohio State’s 2022 class and the fourth prospect to earn a fifth star, joining quarterback Quinn Ewers, cornerback Jaheim Singletary and wide receiver Caleb Burton. He’s now the second-best linebacker in the nation, trailing only Cypress (Texas) Cy Park product Harold Perkins, a Texas A&M lean ranked No. 12 in the national list.
The 6-4, 218-pound Buckeye pledge shared the news on his Twitter account, saying that he’s “blessed to receive (his) fifth (star),” but that he’s “never satisfied” and has “more work to do.”
He’s one of three Buckeye linebacker commits that landed in the top 50 in this rankings drop, along with Marysville, Ohio outside linebacker Gabe Powers (No. 43) and Bloomington (Ind.) South athlete Dasan McCullough (No. 49). Top inside linebacker target Shawn Murphy from Manassas (Va.) Unity Reed is No. 25 player in the class and the top middle linebacker, a slight fall from his spot (No. 17) in the last rankings, released on Feb. 26. As players return to prospect camps this summer, rankings are expected to see a drastic shift.