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Another One of the Top 2025 Linebackers Is Headed to Ohio State

Ryan Day's squad locked in a crucial commitment to the 2025 class. Four-star linebacker Riley Pettijohn picked Ohio State over Texas and USC.
pettijohn ohio state

The 2025 Ohio State recruiting class is filling up as the Buckeyes add yet another top athlete. Rated as a four-star linebacker by all of the major recruiting services, Riley Pettijohn committed to Ohio State over Texas, Texas A&M, and USC. The Buckeyes held the top-rated class in the nation before Pettijohn’s commitment and it has only gotten stronger.

Pettijohn is the 23rd commitment to Ryan Day’s Buckeyes and the third linebacker, joining four-star Tarvos Alford and three-star Eli Lee. While 247Sports has Pettijohn as the fifth-best linebacker and 10th-best overall in Texas, services like Rivals are higher on him. There, he’s the top linebacker in the recruiting cycle and sixth-best in the state.

Four-Star Linebacker Riley Pettijohn Commits to Ohio State

Out of McKinley High School in Texas, Pettijohn is an uber-athletic and uber-productive player. As a junior in 2023, he logged 125 tackles, eight tackles for loss, three sacks, an interception, and even blocked a field goal. In the previous season, he amassed 42 tackles, five tackles for loss, and three sacks.

Pettijohn has athletic and positional versatility. He can play several different linebacker roles and has the athleticism to make up for any deficiencies in his play. Pettijohn looked like he could be more of an edge rusher but developed into a more traditional linebacker over the last year. He will need to develop a more urgent approach when it comes to defending the run in the hole and learn to take better angles. However, he has the speed to overcome.

Pettijohn has the ability to get around blocks and can chase down ball carriers with some serious closing speed. He is competent in man coverage and is willing and able to drop into zone to take tight ends and running backs out of the picture.

He comes from a football family. His father, Duke Pettijohn, was a two-time All-Big East selection as a member of the Syracuse Orange from 1997-2000.

 

pettijohn ohio state
Photo courtesy: Adam Cairns-The Columbus Dispatch

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