Will Smith Jr., son of late Ohio State football star Will Smith, commits to Buckeyes

Joey Kaufman
The Columbus Dispatch
Dublin Coffman's Will Smith Jr. is ranked as the No. 540 prospect and No. 71 defensive lineman in the 2023 class.

Will Smith Jr. is following in his father’s footsteps.

The son of the late Ohio State All-American defensive end Will Smith and a three-star defensive lineman from Dublin Coffman in the class of 2023 announced his commitment to the Buckeyes on Sunday.

“When you know, you know,” Smith tweeted.

The decision came a little more than a week after he received a scholarship offer from the program. He had also picked up other offers from Kentucky, Pittsburgh and West Virginia, among others.

Smith is the fourth recruit to verbally commit to the Buckeyes’ 2023 class, following a trio of four-stars, safety Cedrick Hawkins, tight end Ty Lockwood and offensive lineman Joshua Padilla. Like Smith, Padilla is an in-state prospect, hailing from Huber Heights.

The composite rankings have Smith as the No. 540 prospect and No. 71 defensive lineman in the class. He's listed as 6 feet 3 and 260 pounds.

Smith is viewed as an interior defensive lineman, though at Coffman he has also lined up as a defensive end, .

Will Sr., who played for the Buckeyes from 2000-03, was a starter on Ohio State’s 2002 BCS national championship team and earned All-American honors as a senior. He died in 2016 after he was shot in a road rage incident in New Orleans.

Joey Kaufman covers Ohio State football for The Columbus Dispatch. Contact him at jkaufman@dispatch.com or on Twitter @joeyrkaufman.

Get more Ohio State football news by listening to our podcasts