Better Know A Buckeye is our look at every member of Ohio State’s 2023 recruiting class and how they became Buckeyes as they prepare to begin their OSU careers this fall.
Ohio State's tallest defensive line commit since Sam Hubbard in 2014, Jason Moore's 6-foot-6, 280-pound frame will certainly make him stand out. The No. 8-ranked defensive lineman (No. 67 overall) in the 2023 class, he is the Buckeyes' highest-ranked defensive line prospect in the cycle and is the second player to commit to Ohio State from DeMatha Catholic in the modern recruiting era, following in the footsteps of former Buckeye great Chase Young.
- Size: 6-6/280
- Position: DL
- School: DeMatha Catholic (Hyattsville, Maryland)
- 247 Composite: ★★★★
- Composite Rank: #8 DL
- Overall Rank: #67
How He Became A Buckeye
If Moore's recruitment proved anything, it's that no one should ever doubt Larry Johnson's greatness. Throughout much of the recruiting process, the defensive lineman was expected to commit to Notre Dame.
That all changed when Moore took his official visit to Columbus on June 24-26, 2022, a weekend that he not only realized how much he loved Ohio State, its coaching staff, and everything the program could provide, but also how Johnson could develop him into the dominant lineman that Moore wants to eventually become.
"I would say just being out there and the atmosphere," Moore told 247Sports. "Just getting the feeling they would develop me, and they would be pushing me to be the best version of myself on and off the field.
"Just spending time with the staff, the players, you see how close they are to each other. They were open with me, accepting to me to be around. It was like a true brotherhood."
Moore committed to the Buckeyes less than two weeks after that crucial official visit and signed with the Buckeyes in December.
High School Years
With Moore's size, strength and ability to break through double teams, he dominated as a defensive lineman in high school. As a junior, he had 13 sacks and earned first-team All-Washington Catholic Athletic Conference and first-team All-Maryland honors in 2021.
That dominance continued in his senior season as Moore racked up 13 sacks, 18 tackles for loss, three forced fumbles, one fumble recovery and one interception in 2022. Moore, who lined up primarily at defensive end at DeMatha Catholic, was named the WCAC Defensive Player of the Year, Maryland Defensive Player of the Year by the Washington Post and Maryland's Gatorade Player of the Year in his final high school season.
Should Ohio State DT commit Jason Moore remain ranked as the nation's top defensive tackle? @adamgorney shares his thoughts on top prospects at the position: https://t.co/75GF5rGaHH pic.twitter.com/1hp0G9153s— Rivals (@Rivals) July 13, 2022
He played both football and basketball at DeMatha Catholic, utilizing his size and athleticism to star in both sports.
Moore won't arrive in Columbus until June, as DeMatha Catholic does not permit students to enroll early in a college program. With that, he will have less time to learn the system and develop his body prior to the start of his freshman season.
While learning from the best of the best, though, Moore can use his first year at Ohio State as a developmental season, both on the field and in the weight room. While he will immediately become the Buckeyes' tallest defensive lineman the moment he arrives at the WHAC, Moore will still need to continue to add muscle early on.
Moore won’t compete for a starting job as a true freshman with JT Tuimoloau and Jack Sawyer leading the depth chart at defensive end and Mike Hall Jr., Tyleik Williams and Ty Hamilton leading the way at defensive tackle. With depth questions at both positions, though, Moore could get opportunities to play at one spot or the other and carry momentum into his first full offseason as a Buckeye if he can take advantage of those opportunities.
Whether it's being an anchor in the middle of the defensive line, a playmaker on the edge, or anything in between, Moore has all of the tools to be a dominant defensive lineman at Ohio State, something that the Buckeyes have been known to have under Johnson's lead. It's on Moore to develop his technique, pass-rushing moves and pad level early in his Ohio State career as he won’t be able to win with his physical gifts alone at the college level.
Moore could end up playing either defensive end or defensive tackle at Ohio State. If players such as Tuimoloau, Sawyer, Hall, Hamilton or Williams decide to forgo their remaining eligibility and enter the 2024 NFL Draft, he’ll have an opportunity to compete for a spot on the two-deep entering his second year as a Buckeye.
I believe he could have success either in the interior defensive line or on the edge, but to maximize his size and strengths – literally and figuratively – I see Ohio State mainly using him on the interior. With his already impressive size paired with developing his technique and adding even more muscle, Moore has the upside to be an elite defensive tackle at Ohio State.
Player Comparison: John Simon
When I think of a player that used his strength to dominate no matter where he lined up along the defensive line, I instantly thought of Simon. Although Moore is much bigger than Simon, the versatility and productivity Simon brought to Ohio State’s defensive line is something Moore should look to emulate.
Simon had 1.5 sacks (three tackles for loss) his freshman season before improving every year thereafter, culminating with nine sacks (14.5 tackles for loss) in his final season at Ohio State. It’s not hard to envision Moore having a similar trajectory over the course of his Buckeye career.