Ohio State has been criticized for its inability to recruit top-flight defensive tackles in recent years, but this year's haul may very well be the strength of the Buckeyes' top-rated recruiting class now that Pocatello, Idaho, Highland four-star defensive tackle Tommy Togiai announced his commitment following an in-home visit with head coach Urban Meyer and defensive line coach Larry Johnson.
Committed Go Buckeyes!!! pic.twitter.com/L5X1YllypA— Tommy Togiai (@Big_Tom71) December 13, 2017
The Togiai File
- Class: 2018
- Size: 6-foot-3, 290 pounds
- Pos: DT
- School: Highland (Pocatello, ID)
- Composite Rating: ★★★★
- Composite Rank: 9 (DT)
The 6-foot-3, 290-pound Togiai is considered the ninth-best defensive tackle and No. 126 prospect overall in the Class of 2018. He picked Ohio State over Utah and Washington.
The Buckeyes offered Togiai back in February, and he made his first trip to Columbus alongside his coaches for Friday Night Lights in July. He was blown away by the experience.
"I know that he was very wowed when he went on his unofficial visit," Highland head coach Gino Mariani, who attended the Buckeyes' midsummer recruiting event with Togiai, told Eleven Warriors. "We were treated so well and given so much access to the staff. As coaches, we had a wonderful time. We drank to Kool-Aid. We loved it. Everything was really top-notch."
Togiai and his parents returned to campus for Ohio State's loss to Oklahoma in September, and many thought he might pull the trigger that weekend. He held off, though, in order to take a few more official visits.
Momentum started to shift toward the Huskies following Togiai's trip to Seattle in October, but he set a December announcement date in order to not the let the emotional high of the visit influence his decision and allow him to weigh the pros and cons of both programs.
Ohio State made a significant push when Johnson hopped on a plane from Indianapolis the moment the confetti stopped falling at the Big Ten Championship to conduct an in-home visit earlier this month. Coaches from Utah and Washington followed suit, but it was Meyer's visit on Tuesday that sealed the deal for the Buckeyes.
Togiai becomes the 21st member of Ohio State's Supreme '18 recruiting class, and he joins five-star Taron Vincent and junior college transfer Antwuan Jackson at the defensive tackle position.