Ohio State football 2024 recruits: Defensive additions arriving this summer

A few defensive Ohio State recruits will be arriving in Columbus for Summer workouts and Fall camp.
Ohio State Defensive Coordinator Jim Knowles
Ohio State Defensive Coordinator Jim Knowles / Jason Mowry/GettyImages

The vast majority of the 2024 Ohio State football team's recruiting class enrolled in January, went through the grueling winter conditioning program, and concluded spring football practice. Out of a class that wound up with 22 scholarship players, 15 of them are already finishing up their first semester of college.

What about those players who did not enroll early? This article, and last week's, looks at those remaining players, on both sides of the ball. This week's article will focus on the recruits who are going to be on defense for the Buckeyes. Players will be listed in the order that they gave Ohio State their verbal commitment during the recruiting process.

S Leroy Roker (Fort Myers (FL) Bishop Verot

Roker was contemplating other schools, such as Old Dominion, Iowa, and Miami (FL), when Ohio State entered the recruiting picture in the fall of 2023, and Roker eventually gave Ohio State his verbal commitment on October 11th, 2023. Listed at 6'1", 175 pounds, Roker helped Bishop Verot reach the FL state regional finals as a senior and was used on both sides of the ball, gaining nearly 600 all-purpose yards on kick returns, receiving, and rushing.

Considering that Roker is arriving for summer workouts, it would seem likely that Roker would be a candidate for special teams duties, with a probable redshirt after four games.

On Leroy Roker, Ohio State head coach Ryan Day stated, "He's someone we got on late. He had a really good senior year, and we've had good luck with guys we've evaluated late in their senior year. He's a guy that was very productive down there, and we're excited to add him to the back end.".

DL Dominic Kirks (Painesville (OH) Riverside)

Kirks was a later addition, signing with Ohio State in the February 2024 signing period, after giving his verbal commitment to Ohio State on January 20th, 2024. Originally a verbal commitment to Washington, Kirks reopened his recruitment, after (then) Washington head coach Kalen DeBoer left the program to take over as the head coach for Alabama.

Considering how Ohio State had only signed Eddrick Houston and Eric Mensah in the 2024 recruiting class, Kirks was a very welcomed addition to the defensive line position group.

A redshirt year seems probable for Kirks, considering the depth of defensive linemen on the Ohio State roster for 2024. Listed at 6'4", 255 pounds, Kirks has a basketball background and could project as a "tweener" at either defensive end or defensive tackle. It will be interesting to see how Kirks develops, once he arrives at Ohio State.

"I am an Ohio kid and I love my state, so I get to stay close to home and play for Ohio State. Ohio State has that brotherhood...Ohio State is a great fit for me." ~ Dominic Kirks

P Nick McLarty (Melbourne, Australia)

Considering Ohio State lost Jesse Mirco in the transfer portal to Vanderbilt, and the lack of depth at the punter position, it would not be a stretch to say that McLarty may have a terrific chance to make an immediate impact in 2024 for the Buckeyes. McLarty visited Ohio State during Spring football practices, and gave his verbal commitment to the Buckeyes on March 8th, 2024.

Ohio State has since added former Buffalo punter Anthony Venneri to their roster since McLarty gave his verbal commitment, so the Buckeyes will have someone with previous game-time experience at the punter position.


Even so, McLarty's impressive physical appearance (listed at 6'7", 255 pounds), and impressive social media clips of him punting the ball, will have Ohio State fans wondering when McLarty may be given an opportunity to show what he can do for the Buckeyes.