BOOM! Ohio State lands Texas Four-Star Linebacker Payton Pierce

Just like that, the Buckeyes have officially added another big piece to the 2024 class, on the defensive side of the ball. This time, Ohio State has landed the commitment of high four star Lucas, Texas linebacker Payton Pierce.

Pierce comes to the Buckeyes after a major shift in his recruitment. For the better part of about six months of Pierce’s recruitment, he was expected to end up with Notre Dame. Although Pierce seemed to have been destined to join the Irish it’s very easy to understand why the unofficial “flip” happened: new Ohio State assistant James Laurinaitis.

While at Notre Dame, the former Buckeye great and past NFL’er was assigned the duties of recruiting Pierce to South Bend. But of course when Ryan Day extended an offer to Laurinaitis it was a no brainer as he allowed the former Buckeye to return back to his roots in Columbus. Ohio State immediately became the beneficiary of that relationship as Pierce and Laurinaitis have already created a strong bond and rapport.

Pierce comes to the Buckeyes with a solid frame of 6-foot-1, 225-pounds with some great ability to move sideline to sideline. As well, Pierce now joins a top five class in the country and will be expected to be a major part of this 2024 class with his recruiting cap on in the state of Texas.

Pierce is rated as the No. 164 overall player in the 2024 class, the No. 15 linebacker, and the No. 30 player in the state of Texas. He chose Ohio State over offers from Notre Dame, Oklahoma, and Wisconsin. While the Buckeyes were on a run with offensive commits, landing a combined 21 stars from James Peoples, Mylan Graham, the Armstrong twins, and Air Noland in recent weeks, Pierce is a big time add on the defensive side of the ball.

The Buckeyes have already seen what former players can do on the trail and especially with a solid NFL background. This means we should expect more high end defensive players inside the box as Day allows Laurinaitis to take on more responsibility similar to Brian Hartline in his career. For the staff, this win of Pierce is a very good sign of what is to come in the future.