Former 5-star transfer linebacker reportedly enrolls at Ohio State
Former 5-star linebacker Palaie Gaoteote has apparently enrolled at Ohio State.
Gaoteote spent the last three seasons playing at USC before entering the transfer portal this offseason. While an official announcement hasn’t been made, Gaoteote’s name appears in Ohio State’s online student database.
Gaoteote was the No. 15 overall player and the No. 1 inside linebacker in the country for the class of 2018, according to 247Sports Composite rankings. He’s originally from Bishop Gorman High School in Las Vegas.
Here’s a screenshot:
There is now a Palaie Gaoteote in the Ohio State directory. Ohio State has not confirmed the addition of the former 5-star USC linebacker who entered the transfer portal last year. pic.twitter.com/U8wz5EJhhU
— BuckeyeScoop (@BuckeyeScoop) June 19, 2021
If this move does become official, it would be a big deal for Ohio State’s defense. The Buckeyes have been searching for linebacker depth after losing several key pieces to the NFL this offseason.
Ohio State pursued former Tennessee linebacker Henry To’o To’o earlier this offseason, but he ultimately chose Alabama.
While with the Trojans, Gaoteote played in 17 games and recorded 105 total tackles and 7.5 tackles for loss. He played in just two games last season due to injury and a shortened schedule in the Pac-12.
Ohio State opens its 2021 season on Sept. 2 vs. Minnesota.