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3-star CB Marcus Hooker signs with Ohio State in Early Signing Period

Following in his brother’s footsteps, the papers are in for the next great legacy at cornerback.

Sean Fitz - 247Sports

Ohio State football is a brotherhood, and never more so than when the program becomes a landing spot for more than one player in a family. Like Joey and Nick Bosa before them, Marcus Hooker is looking to follow his older brother Malik’s path to the NFL by way of Ohio State. Marcus has made his commitment to the Buckeyes official during the Early Signing Period and faxed in his National Letter of Intent.

The three-star CB out of New Castle, Pennsylvania is the No. 57 ranked cornerback in the 2018 recruiting class, and No. 21 ranked player in his football-proud home state, according to the 247Sports Composite. Hooker held offers from multiple Big Ten schools, including Penn State and Rutgers, as well as WVU, Cincinnati and others.

Ultimately, the 6’0, 185-pound legacy is looking to follow in his brother’s footsteps, and then some. Older brother Malik Hooker ended up being featured in just one season in Columbus before becoming a first round draft pick by the Indianapolis Colts.

It’s rare to enter the NFL with just one year of film, let alone to get drafted at No. 15, but if that’s what Malik Hooker was able to pull off, then his brother’s ceiling could end up being even higher with more time to develop.

Scouting Report

Marcus is built a bit differently than his brother is. He’s two or three inches shorter, and not as freakish of an athlete as Malik is, although not many people are. Despite a bit of an athletic gap, Marcus is still an extremely long, athletic defensive back that catches the ball very well, just like most Greg Schiano defensive backs. He’s listed as a cornerback right now, but will shift to safety at the next level, as his skill-set dictates.

He may not be the Olympic level athlete that his brother is, but at least according to his high school coach, Marcus may be a better player than Malik was, at least coming out of high school. His game is a bit more refined than Malik’s was, in terms of his coverage skills, tackling ability, and overall technique. He doesn’t have the center fielder-like speed of his brother, but he more than makes up for it with great anticipation skills, and long strides that allow him to cover a large amount of space.

However, that doesn’t mean that he won’t have a lot to learn once he arrives in Columbus. Most of Marcus’ high school success has come on the offensive side of the ball at wide receiver, due to his athleticism. The foundation is there, but as I said, he’ll need to spend a year or two developing his game, especially when it comes to tackling, and the nuances of the safety position in Ohio State’s defense.

Ohio State wouldn’t have offered him if they didn’t think that he had the ability to play at the Big Ten level, and both Greg Schiano and Kerry Coombs are confident that they can mold Marcus into the second Hooker brother to be drafted in the first round of the NFL Draft.

-Patrick Mayhorn

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