Manassas (Va.) Unity Reed four-star defensive tackle Tyleik Williams officially ended his recruitment when he signed with Ohio State during the first day of the Early Signing Period on Wednesday.
The 6-3, 330-pound Williams is considered the 12th-best defensive tackle and No. 161 prospect overall in the class of 2021, as he recorded 47 tackles and 3.5 sacks to help the Lions – formerly known as the Stonewall Jackson Raiders – to the state playoffs in 2019. He chose Ohio State over finalists Alabama, LSU, North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia Tech.
Williams had never been to Columbus before he made his decision, though he was scheduled to take an unofficial visit with his teammate, 2022 five-star linebacker Shawn Murphy, in early April. That trip was cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic, so defensive line coach Larry Johnson and linebackers coach/area recruiter Al Washington extended a scholarship over the phone instead.
The Hokies were long considered the favorite to land Williams, who hails from the same high school as former Virginia Tech defensive tackle Tim Settle and cornerback Greg Stroman. But a virtual visit to Ohio State in August pushed the Buckeyes to the forefront of his recruitment.
Williams initially hoped to make his college decision after taking all five official visits this fall. But with his high school season pushed to the spring and seemingly no end in sight for the NCAA-mandated recruiting dead period, he decided to accelerate his timeline and commit to Ohio State on Aug. 27.
Williams is joined in the Buckeyes’ 2021 recruiting class by Pickerington (Ohio) North five-star defensive end Jack Sawyer and Streetsboro, Ohio, four-star defensive tackle Mike Hall. Ohio State is still hoping to add to that haul by landing Sammamish (Wash.) Eastside Catholic five-star defensive end J.T. Tuimoloau on the traditional National Signing Day on Feb. 3.
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