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Ohio State LB Ryan Shazier 'leaning toward staying' in school

Ohio State junior linebacker Ryan Shazier, one of the nation's best players at his position, said Friday he was "leaning toward staying" in school.

Shazier spoke at a team news conference advancing Ohio State's Orange Bowl appearance against Clemson.

Shazier (6-foot-2, 230 pounds) said he will sit with coaches and family to discuss his decision after the bowl game.

Shazier led the Big Ten in tackles with 135 this season, which ranked fourth nationally. He is considered a bit undersized for the next level, but NFL Media draft analyst Charles Davis said this week that he doesn't think Shazier's size is a problem, noting that Shazier is "a disruptive, run-and-chase weakside linebacker who can take on blocks and knows how to slip them well."

Shazier is from Plantation, Fla., a Fort Lauderdale suburb, and thus will see his family often when he is in Miami for the Orange Bowl.

If he decides to stay in school, he should be a consensus preseason All-America next fall.

Mike Huguenin can be reached at You also can follow him on Twitter @MikeHuguenin.

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