COLUMBUS, Ohio — Justin Hilliard, a 2015 linebacker out of Cincinnati Xavier, released his top five (in no order) on Friday, and as expected, the Buckeyes made the list.
The rest of the schools on the five-star prospect's list include Michigan, Alabama, Iowa and Notre Dame.
Hilliard is rated as the nation's top linebacker according to both ESPN and 247Sports. Both services have him ranked the #13 player in the nation overall. Rivals ranks him the #1 inside linebacker in the nation, while Scout has him as the #4 outside linebacker.
The Buckeyes received a visit from Hilliard just last weekend, and he plans to visit again in a month or so. Visits to his other finalists are in the cards as well, with a decision likely coming sometime after that.
Ohio State and Notre Dame are the only two schools on the list that don't yet have a linebacker committed in the 2015 class. Earlier in the week Michigan got a commitment from Scout's #5 middle linebacker Darrin Kirkland. Alabama, meanwhile, received a commitment from Scout's #7 middle linebacker Leo Lewis a month ago.
Currently, according to 247Sports' Crystal Ball feature, the Buckeyes are the favorites here, but Notre Dame and Michigan have made much of their livelihoods on landing Ohio players.
Alabama hasn't been a stranger either. Remember, in 2011 Alabama landed Trey DePriest out of Springfield. He was Scout's #1-ranked middle linebacker.
Hilliard finished the 2013 season with 56 tackles and two sacks in eight games.
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