Pickerington Central five-star safety Sonny Styles commits to Ohio State football
Ohio State is keeping Sonny Styles in Columbus.
Two and a half hours before they were scheduled to host Purdue on Saturday afternoon, the Buckeyes received a verbal commitment from Styles, a five-star safety from Pickerington Central.
It was a significant pickup with the Buckeyes in the early stages of building their recruiting class for 2023.
Styles is ranked as the eighth-best prospect in the cycle, according to the composite rankings from 247Sports, and an Ohio State legacy as the son of Lorenzo Styles, a former All-Big Ten linebacker in the mid-1990s.
When he announced his decision on social media, Styles shared a graphic that included an image of his father in a Buckeye uniform.
With a long 6-foot-4 frame, Styles could be versatile and fill multiple positions for the Buckeyes at safety or linebacker, as well as the hybrid “bullet’ role that has become a more permanent feature for the defense this season.
Playing in 11 games for the Tigers this fall, Styles totaled 55 tackles and intercepted a pair of passes.
Ohio State has most often held off other schools from poaching premier talent out of its backyard.
Former five-star defensive ends Zach Harrison and Jack Sawyer both signed with the Buckeyes in 2019 and 2021. Harrison is from Lewis Center, and Sawyer is from Pickerington.
The other finalists vying for a commitment from Styles included Clemson, Florida, Notre Dame and Mississippi.
Styles’ older brother, Lorenzo Jr., did leave central Ohio, though. He signed with the Fighting Irish last December and is a freshman wide receiver.