One of Ty Hamilton's biggest goals this season in addition to helping the Pickerington Central football team remain one of the state's best has to do with his future.
The senior, who committed to play for Ohio State in June, has closely followed what the transition to competing collegiately is like, with some of that experience coming from a nearby source.
Hamilton's brother, 2015 Central graduate Davon Hamilton, is a senior starting nose tackle for the Buckeyes.
"Right now, I'm pretty good, but I'm just polishing myself to just get a little bit better, looking at film and tweaking it so I can have a head start on the other recruits," Ty said.
While the younger Hamilton is following his brother to Ohio State, the two bring different strengths to the field.
Davon was a 6-foot-4, 285-pound two-way lineman for the Tigers who was named Division I district Defensive Player of the Year as a senior but has since added muscle and is now listed at 310 pounds by Ohio State. He's played in more than 40 games for the Buckeyes after being a three-year starter for the Tigers.
Ty emerged during Central's 2017 Division I state championship season to produce 57 tackles as part of a defensive unit that was led by Michigan State's Xavier Henderson in the secondary and Pittsburgh's Grey Brancifort at linebacker.
Ty, who is 6-3, 250 pounds, nearly doubled his number of tackles last season when Central went 11-3 and has been a key leader for a defense that held Hilliard Davidson to one touchdown in the Tigers' 28-7 victory Sept. 27.
"Davon is thicker than me," Ty said. "I'm slimmer and faster. I like (all of the defensive positions I've played), but defensive end is my favorite, just being able to get to the passer all the time and having the one-on-ones to get to the quarterback."
The Tigers are 4-1 heading into their OCC-Ohio Division opener Friday, Oct. 4, at Gahanna, which is 0-5. Central has defeated the Lions 14 consecutive times.
Lining up mostly at defensive end but also seeing time at tackle and outside linebacker in some sets, Ty has 43 tackles, 3.5 sacks and four tackles for loss on the season. He totaled nine tackles against Davidson.
According to Ty, he and his brother are "always talking" about how he can get better, as well as about the Buckeyes.
"I went to basically all the home games (growing up)," Ty said. "(Davon and I are) very close. With him being there already, there's so much to learn.
"We've just been working every week since the wintertime to get better and better every day. Even though we took a loss (to Groveport), we're working harder and harder. It's going to be harder for teams to play against us now."
Ty also has seen action as a blocking tight end for Central, which bounced back from a 19-14 loss to Groveport on Sept. 20 to hold Davidson to 125 yards of offense on 40 carries for a 3.1-yard average.
The Wildcats didn't attempt a pass and the Tigers threw the ball just five times, as running back Nick Mosley rushed 23 times for 146 yards and two touchdowns and quarterback Demeatric Crenshaw had 14 carries for 130 yards and one score.
"Ty's having a tremendous senior year," coach Jay Sharrett said.
"He anchors one side of our defense. It's very tough to move the ball on the side he's on. He's having the type of senior year you need him to have."