Defensive lineman Tommy Schutt (10) of Glenbard West, rated Illinois' top senior recruit, has made a verbal commitment to attend Ohio State.
PAUL MICHNA | Staff Photographer
Tommy Schutt of Glenbard West
Paul Michna | Staff Photographer
Glenbard West senior football player Tommy Schutt has found a new home.
The Hilltoppers defensive lineman verbally committed Monday to Ohio State following an official visit last weekend to the Columbus campus.
Schutt called new Buckeyes coach Urban Meyer on Monday afternoon with the news.
Schutt, a 6-foot-3, 290-pound force rated as the state's top senior recruit according to Rivals, verbally committed to Penn State in August. In the wake of the recent scandal surrounding the Nittany Lions' program, however, Schutt and other Penn State recruits began to re-evaluate their situations.
"With everything that happened at Penn State, I really felt like I needed to look at my situation," Schutt said. "I've always liked Ohio State and just felt comfortable there on my visit. I called them and told them I was ready to be a Buckeye."
When news of the scandal broke, Schutt at first said he still was a solid Penn State recruit. But with Ohio State's hiring of Meyer, who led Florida to two national championships, Schutt changed his mind upon meeting with Meyer during his official visit.
"They said he was one of the first guys they wanted to get," said Glenbard West coach Chad Hetlet.
Schutt is a two-time all-state honoree. This season he was named the West Suburban Silver Conference's player of the year after notching 14 sacks, 23 tackles for loss and batting down 11 passes.
Schutt also was selected to play in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl on Jan. 7 in San Antonio.
Describing his roller-coaster recruiting experience as "stressful," Schutt expressed relief at having made the decision. The process may not have gone smoothly, but Schutt is confident he has found the right spot to continue his football career.
"Just trying to figure out the whole situation has been tough," Schutt said. "They said they're excited to have me, and I know I've made the right decision to choose Ohio State."