Elite Jonathan Smith, MSU Football Target Pass Rusher Gives Insight Into Potential Factor For Decision

David Schwerzel is one of the best pass-rushing prospects in the 2026 class. Michigan State is in hot pursuit, and in this Spartan Nation exclusive, Schwerzel gives insight into what could possibly factor into his decision.
Michigan State's Maliq Carr and the Spartans sport the gruff Sparty helmet for the game against Indiana on Saturday, Nov. 19, 2022, at Spartan Stadium in East Lansing.

221119 Msu Indiana 020a
Michigan State's Maliq Carr and the Spartans sport the gruff Sparty helmet for the game against Indiana on Saturday, Nov. 19, 2022, at Spartan Stadium in East Lansing. 221119 Msu Indiana 020a / Nick King/Lansing State Journal / USA

There could be a lot of factors that pull elite four-star edge rusher David Schwerzel to Michigan State. His grandmother, D-Na, attended the school. He liked what he saw when he took a camp visit there with Ford Sports Performance leader Tracy Ford, who brought a host of Washington state's best talent to the school. Schwerzel was not the only one to leave with a scholarship offer.

Schwerzel told me he liked his recruiter, defensive line coach Legi Suiaunoa. Perhaps what could bring the 6-foot-4, 255-pound O'Dea product to East Lansing is the prospect of playing against some of the best competition Division I football has to offer.

"It means a lot just to be able to go out there, you know, and have the opportunity to just play against some of the best guys at that level and you know, the Big Ten is really on the rise and I feel like it's getting up there with the SEC with all the new schools coming in there," Schwerzel told me. "So, I feel it would be a great opportunity to just showcase your talents against some of the best. And you know, iron sharpens iron, so, it's the best against the best. Best on best."

Schwerzel is the No. 24 edge rusher in the 2026 class, per the 247Sports Composite rankings, and the 284th-ranked player nationally. He holds 10 offers right now. That number will likely explode.

247Sports' national recruiting editor Brandon Huffman evaluated Schwerzel. He liked what he saw.

"Schwerzel is one of the top prospects in the state in his class and just narrowly missed the Top 100 for the 2026 class. But he's all but a lock for the Top247 in the spring and with his size, quickness and strength, he'll easily be among the most heavily recruited players in the region in his class," Huffman wrote. "Schwerzel ... kind of reminds us of former Eastside Catholic and current Ohio State star JT Tuimoloau ... Schwerzel plays with his hand on the ground and can line up as an end or as a three-tech and if he needed to, he can drop in to coverage and cover a tight end or a back, using his size and athleticism to run. But his future will be in getting to the quarterback and he shows some natural moves and a quick first step that allows him to get around his blockers with relative ease."

Schwerzel's versatility on the defensive line could be a dream for Suiaunoa and defensive coordinator Joe Rossi. He will be entering his crucial junior year, and teams will likely be lined up by the end of it to try their hand at securing a commitment from the pass rusher. The Spartans will be in hot pursuit.

Michael France is Sports Illustrated's Michigan State recruiting beat writer, covering all things Big Ten recruiting for Spartan Nation. Be sure to follow him on Twitter/X@michaelfrancesi for exclusive Spartans recruiting coverage.

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Michael France

MICHAEL FRANCE