Looking Forward: 2015 Linebackers

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Last updated: 06/19/2014 2:33 AM
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Football Recruiting
Looking Forward: 2015 Linebackers
By Tony Gerdeman

COLUMBUS, Ohio — This is not going to be a very long list, as the Buckeye coaches already know the three linebackers they want to sign in the 2015 class.

With Nick Conner already committed, ideally for OSU, the next two to fall would be Justin Hilliard and Jerome Baker. If they can get those three, and there's a possibility that they'll be two-thirds of the way there by the end of the month, then Urban Meyer would likely put a nail in the 2015 linebacker recruiting.

A couple of other names are listed below, but at this point it is mostly just filler.

Nick Conner (Ohio State) Dublin, Ohio
Rivals ☆☆☆☆ #8 Inside Linebacker
Scout ☆☆☆ ☆ #13 Outside Linebacker
247Sports ☆☆☆☆ #5 Inside Linebacker
ESPN ☆☆ ☆☆ #11 Inside Linebacker
Conner (6-3 225) committed to Ohio State, choosing the Buckeyes over Michigan State. He earned his offer by performing in front of the OSU coaches at camp. He is slated to play the Mike or Will linebacker spot.

Jerome Baker (Uncommitted) Cleveland, Ohio
Rivals☆☆ ☆ ☆ #3 Athlete
Scout ☆☆☆ ☆ #5 Outside Linebacker
247Sports ☆☆☆ ☆ #5 Athlete
ESPN ☆☆☆ ☆ #8 Outside Linebacker
Baker (6-1 205) is an ideal walk-out linebacker in Ohio State's new defensive system. He can cover well enough to stand over slot receivers, and run well enough to support the run. He should eventually be a Buckeye.

Justin Hilliard (Uncommitted) Cincinnati, Ohio
Rivals ☆☆☆☆ #1 Inside Linebacker
Scout ☆☆☆ ☆ #1 Inside Linebacker
247Sports ☆☆☆☆ ☆ #1 Outside Linebacker
ESPN ☆☆☆ ☆☆ #1 Outside Linebacker
Hilliard (6-2 230) is one of the best linebackers in the nation. He has offers from Ohio State, Notre Dame, Iowa, Alabama, Michigan and many others. He is currently trending Ohio State's way and is scheduled to make his decision by the end of the month.

Ricky DeBerry (Uncommitted) Richmond, Virginia
Rivals ☆☆☆ ☆ #9 Outside Linebacker
Scout ☆☆☆ ☆☆ #2 Outside Linebacker
247Sports ☆☆☆☆ #6 Outside Linebacker
ESPN ☆☆☆☆ #13 Defensive End
DeBerry (6-3 255) could very well grow into a defensive end, and in fact he may already have done so. He has offers from everywhere, and even though OSU is listed as the favorite in the 247Sports Crystal Ball, it would be a surprise if he ends up in Columbus.

2016 Linebackers

Brendan Ferns (Uncommitted) St. Clairsville, Ohio
Rivals NR Linebacker
Scout ☆☆☆☆ #6 Outside Linebacker
247Sports ☆☆☆☆ #5 Athlete
ESPN NR Linebacker
Ferns (6-3 223) already has offers from Ohio State, Michigan State, Oklahoma and Penn State. He is the brother of UM linebacker Michael Ferns, but does not yet have an offer from the Wolverines.

Jonathon Cooper (Uncommitted) Columbus, Ohio
Rivals NR
Scout ☆☆☆☆ #22 Outside Linebacker
247Sports ☆☆☆☆ #11 Weakside Defensive End
Cooper (6-3 215) is an explosive pass rusher off the edge. He is a very good athlete that could project to either linebacker or defensive end. He only has offers from Illinois and Kentucky at the moment, though he is definitely working toward an Ohio State offer. He should be at Friday Night Lights in July.

Ethan Tucky (Uncommitted) Delaware, Ohio
Rivals NR
Scout ☆☆☆☆ #25 Outside Linebacker
247Sports ☆☆☆☆ ##6 Outside Linebacker
Tucky (6-2 210) is a fast linebacker who already has good size, and will only get bigger. He recently ran a 10.9 100M at the state track meet. He has a top three of Ohio State, Michigan State and Notre Dame, but only holds offers from Boston College, Toledo and Eastern Michigan. Will need to show more than straight line speed moving forward.

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