COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — Ohio State will play Notre Dame for a second straight year when the Buckeyes travel to South Bend, Indiana, for the first time since 1996.
Last year’s game between the Buckeyes and Fighting Irish was a little complicated for Laverna and Lorenzo Styles of Pickerington. Their oldest son, Lorenzo Jr., was a receiver for the Fighting Irish, and their youngest son, Sonny, was a freshman safety playing in his first game as a Buckeye.
“We’re trying to make sure we’re even,” Laverna said the week of the game. “My husband is Ohio State, I’m Notre Dame, so we’ve got one parent on each side. Got older sister on Ohio State, younger sister on Notre Dame.”
Her husband, Lorenzo Styles Sr., was on the Ohio State side because he played for the Buckeyes in the mid 1990s and helped Ohio State beat Notre Dame 45-26 in 1995.
A year later, there’s no assigned attire and no schedule spreadsheet is needed for the Styles family as their sons reunited. This offseason, Lorenzo Jr. transferred back home to Columbus to play for the Buckeyes.
“It feels great to be here with my brother putting the work in and trying to bring a national championship back to the state of Ohio,” Lorenzo Jr. said. “Notre Dame, though, it’s a great institution, a great coaching staff, but I think this was the best thing for me.”
“I wasn’t trying to convince him to go anywhere,” Sonny said with a smile. “Home was the best place for him. I think it’s super cool. There’s been a few times in practice we are out there together so it’s special.”
In this year’s game, the Styles brothers will be on the same sideline together.
“Just being in this environment with him, watching him work and being his big brother in this type of environment is pretty cool,” Lorenzo said.
When Lorenzo transferred from Notre Dame to Ohio State, he also transferred from offense to defense to play cornerback.
“I thought I would have the best opportunity to have a long career in the NFL as a corner,” he said. “I think I have the highest ceiling at that position.”
Lorenzo added it’s nice to be back in his home state 20 minutes from his family. But just because Sonny and Lorenzo are both Buckeyes doesn’t mean the competitiveness disappears.
“You tell them to clean the room, but when they were little, it was who had the room done first? Just to show that they could get it done first,” Laverna said. “Or fishing! It’s all about who’s going to get the most fish or whose fish is the biggest. You can’t turn that off. You’ve got to compete at all times.”
At least there’s no longer a competition for scheduling.
“There’s only one stop on Saturday,” Lorenzo said with a smile. “That’s it.”