COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — Sonny Styles was supposed to be getting ready for his senior year of high school at Pickerington Central. Instead, Styles decided to graduate early and enroll at Ohio State this fall.

Fitting in can be difficult for any first-year player, but standing out at powerhouse like OSU is even more challenging. And yet Styles, the No. 2 recruit in Ohio for the class of 2021, is already impressing his OSU coaches after one week of fall camp.

“I don’t ever remember yelling at him except for positive things,” defensive coordinator Jim Knowles said. “I don’t remember him making mistakes and for a young guy that’s fantastic, so I think Sonny’s going to be great.”

It’s unlikely Styles sees much playing time this season. Although the Buckeyes’ defense emphasizes the safety position, there’s plenty of veteran talent ahead of him on the depth chart. But making small contributions in practice and on special teams can translate to snaps in blowout games, of which there will be plenty for OSU this season.

“In the opportunities he’s had to compete, he has shown that he’s got toughness,” OSU head coach Ryan Day said. “His ability to get coached, he’s getting coach pretty hard, he takes it. He wants to get better. He’s got a great look in his eye and he’s off to a wonderful start.”

Ohio State projected safety depth chart

  • 1st team: Strong Safety Josh Proctor, Free Safety Ronnie Hickman, Nickle Safety Tanner McCalister
  • 2nd team: Strong Safety Kourt Williams, Free Safety Lathan Ransom, Nickel Safety Cameron Martinez