At long last, the wait is over.
Ohio State has its first commitment for the recruiting class of 2023.
The Buckeyes landed four-star tight end prospect Ty Lockwood on Thursday afternoon as the Independence High School (Thompson’s Station, Tennessee) standout gave his verbal commitment to the Buckeyes one day before beginning his junior football season.
All glory to God! Thankful for it all! GO BUCKEYES pic.twitter.com/5JWMqno8Y1— Ty Lockwood (@TyLockwood7) August 19, 2021
According to 247Sports’ composite rankings, Lockwood is the 142nd-best prospect nationally and the eighth-best tight end in the recruiting cycle. Lockwood averaged 14.1 yards per catch in his sophomore season for Independence High School while catching 43 passes for 606 yards and three touchdowns.
Lockwood was Ohio State’s priority target in the 2023 class from the start, as he was the first tight end in the cycle to pick up an offer from Ohio State in February. That meant a lot to the 6-foot-5, 225-pound tight end.
The Lockwood File
- Class: 2023
- Size: 6-foot-5/225 lbs
- Pos: TE
- School: Independence (Thompson's Station, TN)
- Composite Rating: ★★★★
- Composite Ranking: #142 (#8 TE)
“I think that’s what every athlete wants. What every person wants is to be wanted,” David Lockwood, Ty’s father, told Eleven Warriors. “When a head coach tells you when you’re sitting in his office, that you’re the guy they want at that position in this class, that’s a pretty strong statement. It’s a good confidence builder for a kid. It helps when you make a commitment to realize, ‘This is a place that wants me here.’”
Lockwood currently resides in Tennessee, but has only lived there since last summer. He spent most of his life in the Chicago area, but didn’t have a consistent favorite team growing up.
“To be honest, when I was young, I was such a bandwagon fan,” Ty said. “I’m not gonna lie to you. If they were good, I liked them.”
OSU offensive coordinator Kevin Wilson and running backs coach Tony Alford made a Buckeye fan out of Ty, though. David said the Lockwood family was impressed by the family atmosphere Ohio State offered and how genuine the coaching staff was.
“From day one, Kevin Wilson was great, we really connected with him,” David said. “He’s a man of character and wisdom. He’s a great football mind and the type of guy we could see mentoring and leading Ty, not only on the football field, but beyond.”
After the dead period ended on June 1, Lockwood visited Columbus in early June for a camp before visiting Columbus again for the Buckeye Bash & BBQ on July 29. He also visited South Carolina, Michigan, Florida State, Georgia and Clemson this summer.
Lockwood chose Ohio State after including Penn State, Florida State and South Carolina in his final four. He had 23 offers in total. Lockwood told Eleven Warriors in July that finding “a brotherhood” was one of the most important factors to him, along with going to a school with a strong academic reputation. OSU met his needs in both regards.
“It was one of my best visits, easily,” Ty said. “I loved the coaches there and obviously the facilities are great. I could just tell there was a brotherhood feel to it. All the coaches were talking to each other, knew each other and were like best friends. It was good to see that, because I didn’t see that out of a lot of other schools, for sure.”
Lockwood has the frame and blocking instincts to become an all-around tight end at the next level, though he has played mostly out wide in high school.