COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — Making a name for yourself on Ohio State’s football team is hard enough. It’s even more challenging when you’re a defensive lineman compared with your older brother who’s in the NFL.
“I feel like all of us have that little growing step we had to go through,” Ty Hamilton said. “It’s not easy all the time, but … you can see the progress in every single day.”
Hamilton said the area where he’s seen the most progress is his mentality on the field.
“Confidence has changed the most in my game,” he said. “Coming off of last year, coming off the back half of the season playing pretty good, I think, it’s just having that confidence I can go out there and dominate when I need to dominate so when my number’s called I can go on the field and play.”
Hamilton’s confidence rose toward the end of the 2022 season when he started the final five games at nose tackle after only taking about a dozen snaps in blowout wins earlier in the year.
His number was called often Saturday in a season-opening, 23-3 win over Indiana. Hamilton started at nose tackle and played 25 snaps, which was nearly half of the 55 plays Ohio State faced against the Hoosiers. Hamilton’s increase in confidence has allowed the coaches to be more confident in him as well.
“Ty’s like a cold-blooded gentleman,” defensive coordinator Jim Knowles said late last season. “Quiet, good smile, but he’s just really tough inside and he’s athletic. I’ve seen him use his hands and get off blocks and make plays. Not only hold point, but I’ve seen his hand skills really developing. He’s earned more playing time.”
Hamilton’s earned that playing time at nose tackle, a position he never though he would play at Ohio State.
“I thought I was coming in to play defensive end but I think it’s definitely a blessing being where I’m at now,” Hamilton said. “Coach [Larry Johnson] saw a vision in me and he bought in and now I’m here, so I just can’t be nothing but grateful.”
Although Ty wants to be his own person, the similarities between he and DaVon are uncanny. Both brothers played for Jay Sharrett at Pickerington Central, where they were overlooked high school prospects. DaVon was the 46th ranked player in Ohio and 63rd ranked defensive tackle in the country, per 247Sports. Ty was the 24th ranked player in the state and 33rd ranked side defensive end in the nation.
“Of course I look at [DaVon] as a blueprint. I’m my own person but I definitely want to use that blueprint and amplify it,” Hamilton said. “I want to be and do better than, do better than what he did and just use his teachings and take it and use it to my advantage.”
Neither Hamilton was considered a top 750 player in their respective senior classes. Even their path at OSU has been eerily similar. DaVon and Ty both redshirted their freshman season, followed by two seasons of limited playing time before taking on a larger role as juniors.
DaVon’s senior season included 9.5 tackles for a loss and six sacks, which helped him become a third round pick in 2020. Now, Ty has a similar opportunity his senior year to show he’s the next Hamilton who deserves to be in the NFL.