Nick Dials Hopes To Return

Guard Nick Dials was awarded a scholarship for his freshman season after walking on last year, but the recruitment of Malik Hairston left his status for next year in doubt. Now that Hairston has turned down Ohio State, the chances for Dials staying on scholarship increase significantly, and Dials says that he hopes he is able to stay at Ohio State.

For most members of the Ohio State basketball program, the world froze in anticipation for the decision of heralded Detroit basketball star Malik Hairston. Despite the disappointing final result, one current team member might find consolation in the outcome.

New Haven, Ohio and Willard High School standout Nick Dials, a 6'0 freshman guard came to the Buckeyes as a preferred walk-on for head coach Jim O'Brien.

Back in September, Dials was awarded a full athletic scholarship for the 2003-2004 season following the departure of Emonte Jernigan. Scholarships, however, are renewed on an annual basis, and Dials was given no assurance his would be available for the upcoming 2004-2005 season.

The decision of Hairston to attend the University of Oregon might change that.

"I'm just going to continue to sit tight and let this play out," Dials told on Wednesday night. "There's no question the chances of my return are much better now, but it's out of my hands."

Dials recently remarked that he would consider a transfer if Ohio State was unable to grant him a scholarship for the upcoming season to ease the burden of paying his own way through school. The Buckeyes currently have only eight players on scholarship for next season, as well as four incoming basketball recruits.

Although Dials has been in a holding pattern to see whether or not Ohio State would have room to add him to the list of scholarship players, he has not sought out any transfer previously.

"I've had a couple of places on my mind," he said. "But I definitely haven't been in contact with anyone yet nor have I signed any paperwork to get permission to speak with any other programs."

Dials made it quite clear where his priorities currently lie.

"Right now I'm just going to class, working on my conditioning, and concentrating on my academics," Dials added. "I definitely want to stay at Ohio State. I'm just going to be patient. I've spoken with Coach O'Brien a couple of times. As time goes on, if I don't find out one way or another I may have to make a decision, but right now I'm absolutely in no hurry."

Sources indicate there is a very good chance Dials will be extended a scholarship for this season with there being no other recruiting targets imminent for spring signing period, but there's no indications that has yet been made official.

Patience is something apparently Dials has a lot of.

"As long as it doesn't take too long, I just want to wait this thing out," he said. "The hope is that I can stay. That's the best option."

The anticipation will now turn from hoping for a possible arrival to hoping against a possible departure. Fortunately this time, it won't be so long of a wait.

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