COLUMBUS — Ohio State routinely lands on top schools lists for prospects across the country.
And with four-star Delran (N.J.) St. Joseph’s Prep linebacker Anthony Sacca, it was no exception. The 6-foot-2.5, 225-pound linebacker announced his final five schools and Ohio State made the cut.
Alabama, Duke, Notre Dame and Wisconsin round out the mix. Of note, Sacca is a Penn State legacy and left the Nittany Lions off his list.
The East Coast native is the No. 196 overall prospect, the No. 26 linebacker and the No. 4 Pennsylvania prospect according to the On3 Industry Rankings. While he doesn’t have an overall ranking with On3, he is the No. 32 linebacker and the No. 10 Pennsylvania prospect per On3.
Sacca made his debut visit to Ohio State in July the week before the Buckeyes hosted their SummerFest recruiting event at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center.
Defensive coordinator Jim Knowles, a St. Joe’s alum and Philly native, is leading the recruitment here and he made a big impression over the summer.
“Not many people are getting recruited by the defensive coordinator personally,” Sacca told Lettermen Row over the summer. “They produce year in and year out, at every position, they’re sending guys to the league, it’s a great ran program.”
That relationship with Knowles and graduate assistant James Laurinaitis has changed. It’s improved plenty. Knowles visited Sacca a couple of times during the winter contact period and continued to leave a good impression.
“[Knowles] has longstanding ties with the city of Philadelphia,” Sacca told On3. “He’s been all over the place and had great success. I really like their defensive philosophy.
“I’ve still thought fondly about what he showed me when I was down there on my visit in July. Also, the game day experience at Ohio State was a really good time.”
Sacca’s debut game day visit was for the Penn State game on Oct. 21. A fitting opponent given the recent news and shake-up in his recruitment.
Ohio State already has one linebacker committed to its 2025 class. Three-star Akron (Ohio) Archbishop Hoban linebacker Eli Lee committed to the Buckeyes in October, shortly after that Penn State game. Both he and Sacca were in the Horseshoe and spent time together.
The Buckeyes are always trending for four-star Port St. Lucie (Fla) Vero Beach linebacker Tarvos ‘TJ’ Alford with three predictions on them to land Alford.
Ohio State is trending with some other prospects, but Sacca will be in mind throughout the recruiting cycle.