OSU Men's Hoops Recruiting Chart - 2006 & Beyond

With the end of OSU's men's basketball season in sight, it will soon be time to start focusing on the future. Head coach Thad Matta will have plenty of talent to choose from in building the OSU program, especially from inside the state of Ohio. What players will Matta and his staff be targeting, and which ones may be interested in OSU in return? Kyle Lamb breaks it all down today.

Updated March 4th, 2005

It's been a long time coming, but the newest basketball recruiting chart has finally arrived. We finally release the updated insight into who and where the Ohio State basketball staff might be looking for the next couple of years.

First, a little background into the recruiting classes. For next year's class of 2006, Ohio State currently has six scholarships to offer. It is widely expected that Ohio State will sign a post player in the spring, meaning that leaves five scholarships for this upcoming recruiting class.

So, all expectations are that ultimately, Ohio State will sign four or five players this season. We know a post player and a point guard will be the priorities, with a power forward and a couple of guards/wings being the bonus.

For the 2007 class, it's likely there will be three or four scholarships available, pending whether the 2006 class takes all five, or just four.

Without further adieu, here's the most recent recruiting chart for the classes of 2006, 2007, and even some insight to 2008 complete with a list of schools, interest levels, recent stats, and more!

CLASS OF 2006

SCHOLARSHIPS AVAILABLE – 4/5

PRIORITIES – POINT GUARD AND CENTER

Point Guards

(Scout Hoops' position ranking and star ranking before name)

1 Mike Conley
(Lawrence North HS)
Indianapolis, IN
6-1 160
Wake Forest leads Ohio State, Illinois, Michigan State, and Arkansas

Interest level – Mutual high interest
Offered – Yes
Recent Stats – Through 10 of his team's 16 games, averaging 11.0 PPG, 6.0 assists a game, and 3.3 steals per game. Lawrence North is 14-2.Conley missed several games with a toe injury that he recently recovered from.

The Short  -- Conley is a top-tier point guard with great instincts, superb athleticism, and great court savvy. He knows where everyone is on the floor at all times. In addition to being a great passer, excellent leader, and capable of driving the lane, Conley can also hit an outside shot when needed.

The Skinny – There's little questioning that Wake Forest is the team to beat for Conley. Right now, it's his favorite school and has been for a while. However, he and Daequan Cook are very serious about playing together, and aside from the fact Conley's parents probably prefer slightly that he stay closer to home, there is still enough motivation for Conley to decide on Ohio State or Illinois in somewhat of a surprise. He will likely visit Ohio State for the Illinois season-finale in Columbus.

2   D.J. Augustin
(Brother Martin HS)
New Orleans, LA
6-1 170
Georgetown, LSU, North Carolina, Texas, Wake Forest, Duke, and Ohio State

Interest level – Mutual medium interest
Offered – Yes
Recent Stats – Through 31 games, Augustin was averaging 20.6 points and 5.0 assists per game for Brother Martin, who is now 38-2 on the season.

The Short  -- Augustin is a pure point guard who is also a terrific shooter. The outside shooting ability of Augustin makes him a threat at any time to hit a shot if you lose him on a screen or in the zone. He hits from over 40 percent from long-range. Augustin's biggest weakness is simply that he needs to penetrate more often to make defenders respect that part of his game. He's also a good passer, and very capable of driving -- when he chooses.

The Skinny – For right now, Augustin is leaning to North Carolina or Wake Forest.  With he and another top point guard in 2006 -- Tywon Lawson, both looking towards the Demon Deacons, Ohio State's chances with Conley could be greatly increased if either one commits to Wake before Conley does. However, Ohio State is very interested in getting Augustin as well. However, it seems although they are still involved, they are on a second tier of teams for now.

7 Javaris Crittenton
(Southwest Atlanta Christian Ac)
Atlanta, GA
6-5 185
Georgia Tech leads Wake Forest, Louisville, Florida, Florida State, Connecticut, Oklahoma, Kentucky, Tennessee, and Ohio State amongst others

Interest level – Mutual low interest
Offered – No
Recent Stats – N/A  

The Short  -- Blessed with a frame similar to that of Shaun Livingston, Crittenton is a big point guard with great playmaking ability, and a tremendous amount of athleticism. Although he needs to tone down on a somewhat erratic shot-selection, Crittenton can hit shots from almost anywhere on the floor, and is very good getting to, and finishing around the basket.

The Skinny – Right now, Georgia Tech leads for the homeboy ahead of Wake Forest, Louisville, Kentucky, and several others. Ohio State has shown a little bit of interest, but it appears he's not high on their radar, and even if they pick up the pace, they likely won't be much of a factor.

10 Willie Walker
(Bolingbrook HS)
Romeoville, IL
5-11 170
Illinois and Marquette lead Georgia Tech, Ohio State, Miami (Fl.), Wake Forest, Baylor, DePaul, Michigan State, and Northwestern

Interest level – Mutual medium to high interest
Offered – Yes
Recent Stats – Averages 18 points a game through 22 games played. Bolingbrook is 19-3 as Walker shoots 44% from the field and 33% from 3-point range.

The Short  -- Walker is a quick, penetrating point guard who excels in the open floor. To be a big commodity on the college level, he will have to continue to improve his outside consistency and improve his shot selection.  Walker is very tough to stop when he gets on a roll, and his athleticism will, at very least, make him well worth a scholarship to a big program.

The Skinny – In the past, Walker has said he grew up watching Ohio State, especially as Michael Redd was one of his favorite players. Right now, Ohio State appears to be very interested in Walker as their very talented Plan-B to either Conley or Augustin.The Buckeyes will have a tough time beating out Georgia Tech or Illinois for his services, however.  

NR Cameron Rundles
(De La Salle HS)
Minneapolis, MN
6-0 180
Minnesota, Michigan State, Ohio State, Florida, Creighton, Illinois, DePaul, Dayton, Iowa, Oklahoma, Wisconsin

Interest level – Medium interest
Offered – No
Recent Stats – Averaging 11.7 points a game and nearly eight assists a game in 12 games played as De La Salle is 14-8 on the season behind their junior point guard who recently returned an injury sustained during football season.  

The Short  -- Rundles might be one of the best-kept secrets in the Midwest, or at least, one of the least talked about players. After a terrific summer, Rundles was beginning to make a name for himself but an injury sustained in football season left recruiters away from Minneapolis most of this season. Rundles is back, and although he hasn't yet asserted himself as a scorer, he's playing very well. He's a true point guard that Ohio State reportedly likes a lot, and hope will slip under the radar. He's a great passer, and very good with the ball.

The Skinny – Once the recruiting picks back up, it's believed Minnesota, Marquette, Florida, Arizona, Wisconsin, Iowa, and many other teams will join Ohio State keeping a close eye on Rundles and many could wind up offering scholarships.


Shooting Guards

1 Daequan Cook
(Dunbar HS)
Dayton, OH
6-5 190
Ohio State, Wake Forest, North Carolina, Michigan, Cincinnati, Illinois, Connecticut, Oklahoma, Michigan State

Interest level – Mutual high interest
Offered – Yes
Recent Stats – Averages 21.5 points and 11.6 rebounds a game. Shoots 54% from the field this season in 24 games, while shooting 80% from the charity stripe. Also adds four assists a game while shooting 43% from 3-point range.

The Short  -- Cook is a silky smooth guard who does most everything well. If there's any weakness, he could work on playing defense with his feet a little more, but that's not even a major flaw in his game. Cook is as well-rounded a prospect you could ask for.

The Skinny – The Buckeyes are in an enviable position right now. They are battling Wake Forest and North Carolina for Cook's services, but if they don't have the lead, they are definitely right there at the top. Cook will likely make his decision within the next two or three months.

6 Ramar Smith
(King HS)
Detroit, MI
6-3 185
Connecticut leads Cincinnati, Arkansas, Michigan State, Georgetown, North Carolina, and Ohio State

Interest level – Low to medium interest
Offered – No
Recent Stats – Averages 22 points a game this year for King High School

The Short  -- If there's one guy who you look at physically as someone who will play well at the next level, it's Smith. Problem is that he hasn't progressed and gotten better over the last year. Even still, he's a strong, quick guard who finishes well and can get to the basket.

The Skinny – Smith is a strong lean to Connecticut right now, with Cincinnati, Michigan State, and others still involved. Ohio State seems to be out of the picture right now.

NR Marques Johnson
(R Nelson Snider HS)
Fort Wayne, IN
6-5 175
Notre Dame, Arizona, Louisville, Michigan, North Carolina, Wake Forest, Ohio State, Michigan State, and Purdue

Interest level – Medium interest
Offered – No
Recent Stats – N/A

The Short  -- Johnson, not to be confused with the Johnson, Marcus of a different spelling in Akron, Ohio, is a big time athlete. He has good perimeter skills and can finish underneath. Johnson often plays above the rim, and once his game is refined he could be a monster. Count on him being a solid prospect that will have a solid career.

The Skinny – Right now, Johnson appears destined to going somewhere he will play immediately—which may leave out Louisville, a place he seems to like a lot.  Notre Dame and Arizona seem to be the early leaders.

NR Leon Freeman
(Belleville HS)
Belleville, MI
6-3 195
Michigan State, Michigan, Detroit, Ohio State, Bowling Green, and Oakland

Interest level – Low interest
Offered – No
Recent Stats – N/A

The Short  -- Freeman is another high-riser that catches attention because of thunderous dunks and acrobatic moves with the basketball. He's a pretty good shooter, but the word is that his biggest setback is that he sometimes plays out of control.

The Skinny – This is a kid that has drawn interest from Michigan State, and many of the hometown schools, including the MAC. He is likely to stay close to home, although we hear he loves the ACC.

NR Marcus Johnson
(St. Vincent-St. Mary HS)
Akron, OH
6-3 180
Michigan, Ohio State, Cincinnati, Akron, and Penn State
Interest level – Low interest
Offered – No
Recent Stats – N/A

The Short  -- Marcus Johnson is a very smooth athlete who handles the ball well, and is very quick. Problem is, his shot, or lack thereof, really scares away a lot of schools. If he can get to the point where he is sinking a fair amount of 3-pointers, he will be highly recruited. If not, look for him to be a solid mid-major prospect. The athleticism is certainly there. However, he needs his shot to be.

The Skinny – We have heard Johnson is a big fan of Michigan, but we've also heard he loves Ohio State. It won't matter either way, currently, if he doesn't improve a little more.

NR Devan Bawinkle
(Winnebago HS)
Winnebago, IL
6-4 
DePaul, Iowa, Marquette, Ohio State, Northern Illinois, and Northwestern  

Interest level – Medium interest
Offered
– No
Recent Stats – 13.3 points and nearly eight assists a game while contributing 3.5 steals a game through February 23rd

The Short  -- If there's any sort of kid a coach would love to have on their basketball team, Bawinkle is probably it. A teammate of Will Walker's on the Illinois Wolves last season, Bawinkle is a throwback with his hard work, gritty play, and terrific court awareness. He possesses a good shot and is able to make plays. 

The Skinny – Bawinkle is a smart kid, the type of kid you expect to exceed academically, if not athletically. He's capable of both. Right now, there's a good chance he stays close to home.

NR James Dews
(Lakota East HS)
Middletown, OH
6-3 185
Michigan, Xavier, Kentucky, Purdue, Cincinnati, North Carolina, Wake Forest, Dayton, Michigan State, Ohio State, and Illinois

Interest level – Mutual low to medium interest
Offered – No
Recent Stats – Dews averages over 18 points a game, while shooting over 40% from 3-point range

The Short  -- You won't find a better pure shooter than Dews. He's got a great stroke from long-range, and he's also a very good with the mid-range game and penetrating. Dews is a pure shooting guard, however, and he's really incapable of sliding over to the point or the wing -- which might be his biggest drawback.

The Skinny – Ohio State showed a lot of interest early, but seemed to back away for the longest time. There's some indication they may or may not be at least showing interest once again, but it may be too little too late even if they do. Dews loves the ACC, but he also might be likely to stay home.  Xavier and Wake Forest both have a solid chance to land Dews.

NR David Kool
(South Christian HS)
Grand Rapids, MI
6-2 175
Michigan, Michigan State, Arizona, Florida, Kansas, Kentucky, Ohio State, Purdue, and Western Michigan

Interest level – Medium interest
Offered – No
Recent Stats – Averages 23 points, 7.0 rebounds, and 5.0 assists a game  

The Short  -- In a lot of aspects, Kool is a lot like James Dews.Kool has a terrific jumper, and can shoot from anywhere on the floor. He has worked hard at developing a quick release, and a nice pull-up shot.Kool is strictly a shooting guard, but he's good enough to excel at it for a major program.

The Skinny – The home schools, especially Michigan State, have shown a lot of interest in Kool. The last big time scorer to come out of his high school -- former Spartan Matt Steigenga.

NR Nate Davis
(Bellaire HS)
Bellaire, OH
6-3
Cincinnati leads Duquesne, Ohio, Ohio State, Akron, Kent State, and Pittsburgh

Interest level – Medium interest
Offered – No
Recent Stats – Averages 27.9 points, 14.7 rebounds, and 7.1 assists a game for the 18-5 Bellaire Big Reds

The Short  -- Some consider Davis' money sport football, as he's one of the top quarterbacks in the state and one of three Ohio signal callers that Ohio State is interested in next season.  As a basketball player, he's a good shooter with a strong athletic ability, but still has room to improve further to reach the next plateau as a basketball prospect. He's likely to play basketball in college, as that's his first love. 

The Skinny – Right now, it's safe to expect Davis to end up at a mid-major at worst, but Cincinnati, Ohio State, and many other schools are still watching closely.


Wing Forwards

2 David Lighty
(Villa Angela - St Joseph HS)
Cleveland, OH
6-5 180
Syracuse leads Ohio State, Michigan, Arizona, Florida, Michigan State, and North Carolina

Interest level – Mutual high interest
Offered
– Yes
Recent Stats
– Averaged 24.5 points a game in the regular season. Also added 11.8 rebounds, six assists, and four steals a game

The Short  -- In most seasons, Lighty would be easily the best player in the state of Ohio. However, in most seasons, Ohio wouldn't have an O.J. Mayo, Bill Walker, and Daequan Cook stealing the spotlight. Lighty is a great player who does everything well. He's very athletic, plays above the rim, and has a nice outside shot to go along with it.

The Skinny – Ohio State hopes proximity to home wins out in the end, as they still are very much in the mix for Lighty along with Syracuse and Michigan. Arizona also is doing well, although being so far from his family could hurt the Wildcats in the end.

NR Anjuan Wilderness
(Dunwoody HS)
Dunwoody, GA
6-5 210
Florida, Kentucky, Louisville, Texas, Georgia, Georgia Tech, and Ohio State

Interest level – Medium
Offered – Yes
Recent Stats
– 19.9 points a game, 10.8 rebounds a game, 3.5 steals a game, 60% from the field and 46% from 3-point range

The Short  -- Wilderness is a very good basketball player that Ohio State likes an awful lot.He's a terrific wing prospect with good quickness and a nice shot.His ability to drive the lane and still make outside jumpers give him enough to offer a lot of top tier programs.

The Skinny – The Buckeyes seem to be a long shot with Wilderness at the moment, as he's likely to stay in the Southeast. But, Ohio State will probably keep trying.

6 Isaiah Dahlman
(Braham Area Sec.)
Braham, MN
6-6 175
Iowa leads Minnesota, Michigan State, Boston College, and Wisconsin

Interest level – Low to medium interest
Offered – No
Recent Stats – Averages 27 points and 9.0 rebounds a game

The Short  -- There's little question that Dahlman is one of the best wing prospects in the entire country.  Dahlman is also a well-rounded athlete who scores at will.

The Skinny – Although the Buckeyes would prefer to snatch Lighty up out of Ohio as their wing preference, if they felt they could have made a dent in the Dahlman recruitment earlier, they may have. Expect the do-it-all wing to end up playing in the Big Ten. Most likely, Michigan State. The Dahlmans are also still interested in Iowa and Minnesota a lot.

7 Paul Harris
(Niagara Falls HS)
Niagara Falls, NY
6-3.5 205
Syracuse leads Connecticut, Charlotte, Pittsburgh, North Carolina, Ohio State, St. John's, Seton Hall, and Rutgers

Interest level – Medium interest
Offered – No
Recent Stats – N/A  

The Short  -- Harris is an explosive athlete that has a body ready to compete on the next level. His shot seems to be rather inconsistent, but his scoring usually isn't.

The Skinny – It's very likely that Harris will end up playing for Syracuse, as some off the court problems for Harris never deterred the Orangemen. Ohio State was recruiting Harris until late in the fall, a sign that his temper (and misdemeanor assault trial) scared them off. Still, Harris' ending up at Syracuse would help with Ohio State's bid to land David Lighty.

9 Rob Thomas
(South Kent School)
South Kent, CT
6-6 185
Connecticut, DePaul, Florida, Miami (Fl), Ohio State, South Florida, St. John's, Syracuse, Virginia Tech, Hofstra, Iona, Iowa, Middle Tenn. State, North Carolina State, and Pittsburgh

Interest level
– Low interest
Offered – No
Recent Stats
– N/A

The Short  -- Thomas is a guy that the previous Ohio State coaching staff showed a lot of interest in.  He's a blue-collar worker with a pretty good leaping ability. Strength is something that Thomas needs to add more of. His shot is still a little inconsistent as well.

The Skinny – Ohio State has not really shown much interest recently. Thomas hears mostly from some Big East schools, with others such as DePaul, Miami (Fl.) and Virginia Tech thrown in.


Power Forwards

NR Bryce Webster
(Saint Thomas Academy HS)
Mendota Heights, MN
6-9 225
Michigan State, Iowa, Marquette, Minnesota, Boston College, Arizona, Illinois, Kansas, Ohio State, and Wisconsin

Interest level – Medium interest
Offered
– No
Recent Stats
– 20.3 points a game and 10 rebounds a game

The Short  -- Being a hard-worker, with a killer instinct and a terrific game, Webster is the type of kid that coaches just love. Add in the fact he's very mobile for his size, and you've got a great power forward prospect.

The Skinny – Ohio State appears to be very interested in Webster. However, reportedly, they feel there's still a lot of ground to make up to get him away from the upper Midwest, and out of the grasp of Michigan State, Iowa, Marquette, or Minnesota.

NR Josh Chichester
(Lakota West HS)
West Chester, OH
6-8 210
Notre Dame, Ohio State, Wake Forest, Xavier, Cincinnati, Dayton, Kentucky, Illinois, and Purdue

Interest level – High interest
Offered – Yes
Recent Stats – Averaged 12.3 points and 7.5 rebounds a game this season for Lakota West

The Short  -- Until this spring, Chichester was somewhat of a project. But then, he shot up about two additional inches and played extremely well for Jerry Watson's All-Ohio Red program. Since then, Chichester's long arms, strong rebounding ability, and crafty play in the paint have garnered interest from numerous top programs.

The Skinny – Recently, Ohio State has been consistently named in Chichester's top three schools with Notre Dame and Wake Forest. Xavier, Kentucky, Illinois, and Purdue, amongst others, has also been named often. Ohio State should be in the mix until then end.

NR Raymar Morgan
(McKinley HS)
Canton, OH
6-7 210
Michigan State, Ohio State, Connecticut, Arizona, Florida, and Syracuse

Interest level – High interest
Offered – Yes
Recent Stats – This season, Morgan averaged 21 points and 10 rebounds a game for McKinley

The Short  -- Morgan is one of the most highly sought-after players to come from the Canton area in quite some time. Some teams view him as a wing, while many feel he's a prototypical power forward. Although he has the perimeter skills to be a good wing, his toughness, athleticism, and ability to step out and hit the three makes him a solid four for Ohio State.

The Skinny – The Buckeyes have a shot at Morgan, but right now Michigan State appears to be in the driver's seat. Morgan would be quite a catch if they could land him.

NR David Jackson
(Kennedy Catholic)
Sharon, PA
6-7/210
Ohio State, Michigan State, Penn State, Pittsburgh, Michigan, and Notre Dame

Interest level – Medium interest
Offered – No
Recent Stats – Jackson averaged 20 points and 12 rebounds this season as a junior

The Short  -- Jackson is an emerging prospect who has a nice inside-outside game. He plays with the same AAU team as David Lighty and Dallas Lauderdale, which means Ohio State has seen plenty of him. He could play the wing, but he seems to be more of a power forward at this stage.

The Skinny – It's too early to say where Jackson stands right now, but Ohio State has shown interest and the feeling has appeared to be mutual.

NR Kurtis Huelsman
(St. Henry HS)
St. Henry, OH
6-9 215
Bowling Green, Cincinnati, Dayton, Duquesne, Michigan State, Ohio, Purdue, Xavier, Ohio State, and Michigan

Interest level – Medium interest
Offered – No
Recent Stats – 12 points and eight rebounds a game

The Short  -- Still somewhat raw, Huelsman needs to add some weight and particularly a little more strength.  He projects as a four in college, but will need to add some range and ball skills to do it successfully. Right now, he's crafty when he's got the ball down low.

The Skinny – Huelsman has a whole host of mid-major schools looking at him and Cincinnati and Michigan have really picked up the pace. Cincinnati recently offered Huelsman. This spring could decide his fate as to how big a school he goes to.


Centers

1 Greg Oden
(Lawrence North HS)
Indianapolis, IN
7-0 240
Indiana, Ohio State, Wake Forest, and Arkansas

Interest level – Medium to high interest
Offered – Yes
Recent Stats – 20.3 PPG, shoots 65.7% from the field, 10.0 RPG, and 3.2 blocked shots a game for 14-2 Lawrence North.

The Short  -- Oden is a physical specimen in the short of it. He's such an asset defensively, and combining his strength and size, his offensive game is good enough that immediately he would be one of the premier centers in college basketball if he plays college. He still has work to do offensively, especially with his jumper, notably his range out to 15 feet.

The Skinny – He seems adamant about going to college, although one wonders if the NBA won't be too tempting an option in a little over a year from now when the reality sets in he would be the first pick of the draft and guaranteed millions of dollars. However, should he go to college, Ohio State, Indiana, and Wake Forest are all serious options. Ohio State appears to be recruiting Oden as a very real possibility, meaning they are not at all dismissing him to professional basketball without a fight.

NR Luke Harangody
(Andrean HS)
Merrillville, IN
6-7.5 245
Ohio State, Illinois, Northwestern, Notre Dame, and Purdue

Interest level – High interest
Offered
– Yes
Recent Stats
– Averaging 23 points and 12 rebounds for Merrillville Andrean (19-2)

The Short  -- If you could design a throwback to the old school type player, Harangody might be it. He's a tough-minded kid who can step out and shoot, make a living down low, and yet, he has the athletic ability to compete against the best of the best.

The Skinny – Ohio State is sitting well with Harangody and might have the best chance to land him. He visited in late October and will likely come again this spring. Illinois and Notre Dame seem to be the biggest competition for his services.

6 Tom Herzog
(Luke M Powers Catholic HS)
Flint, MI
7-0 210
Michigan State, Notre Dame, Michigan, Georgia Tech, Illinois, Marquette, Ohio State, Vanderbilt, and Xavier

Interest level – Low interest
Offered – Yes
Recent Stats – Averages 19 points, 11 rebounds, and five blocks per game

The Short  -- If Herzog adds 20 pounds of muscle, look out. He's already a poor man's Greg Oden the way he alters a game defensively with his long arms and great fundamental defense. Right now, however, he's too thin and could use some more work with the ball in his hands.

The Skinny – Ohio State loves Herzog, but Herzog just really isn't returning the favor. Look for Michigan State or Notre Dame to land him ultimately.

NR Mitchell Carter
(King HS)
Milwaukee, WI
6-10 240
Iowa, Marquette, Notre Dame, Wisconsin, and Ohio State

Interest level – Medium interest
Offered – No
Recent Stats – N/A

The Short  -- Blessed with a Big Ten body, Carter is a tough, athletic center with a pretty high ceiling.  Some consider him a bit raw in the finer points of the game. He comes from the same high school as Jermyl Jackson-Wilson came from just two years ago before attending a year in prep school.

The Skinny – It's likely Carter will stay close to home, but his recruitment is wide open to this point in the process.


CLASS OF 2007

SCHOLARSHIPS AVAILABLE – 3/4
PRIORITIES – SG/WING/PF
 

Point Guards

1 O.J. Mayo
(North College Hill HS)
Cincinnati, OH
6-4/190/28.0
Cincinnati, Duke, Georgia Tech, Kentucky, Louisville, Ohio State, Michigan State, North Carolina, and West Virginia

Averages 27.9 points a game, 7.8 rebounds a game, and over six assists a game while getting over three steals per game and shooting 43% from behind 3-point range.

Obviously Mayo is the complete player. He's a 6-4 point guard with an NBA body and world-class athleticism. If there's one knock on Mayo, it's simply that he's too good to go to college unless the NBA passes legislation in the new collective bargaining agreement.

Should that happen, Louisville, Cincinnati, Ohio State, Kentucky, North Carolina, and Duke all will be involved. The first three schools seem to have covered their bases just in case he does go the college route.

2 Derrick Rose
(Simeon Vocational HS)
Chicago, IL
6-2/180
DePaul, Illinois, Marquette, Michigan State, Notre Dame, Duke, North Carolina, Ohio State, Indiana, Iowa, and Kansas

Rose is a very strong and very skilled guard who has a knack for making big plays. Ohio State would love to land a Derrick Rose, but then again, who wouldn't? 


Shooting Guards

2 Eric Gordon
(North Central HS)
Indianapolis, IN
6-3/185
Arizona, Duke, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio State, Purdue, Iowa, Iowa State, Kansas, and Missouri

Averaging 26.5 PPG this season as a sophomore.  Also adds 2.5 steals a game.

Gordon is a big time scorer who is very athletic and has a nice pure stroke. He needs to refine his shooting accuracy from long range, but he should be a star at the next level. He plays on the same AAU team as Conley, Cook, Oden, and Pogue.

Right now, Gordon is a major early priority of the Ohio State coaching staff, although landing Daequan Cook may cause them to back off. They are involved early with Gordon, but so are other big time programs as well.

3 Alex Legion
(Detroit Country Day School)
Detroit, MI
6-4/180

Legion is a very good athlete who is a little on the thin side, but until you've seen him actually play, you might be a bit deceived at first glance.

He has great court savvy and he makes plays. Legion is a big time prospect and will have all of the top programs in the country after him over the next two years. He has a solid stroke in shooting the ball.

4 Darquovis Tucker
(Arthur Hill HS)
Saginaw, MI
6-4/180

Darquovis, or "Dar" as he's more commonly referred to, is a human highlight film.  He has been lighting up scoreboards this season routinely with 20, 30, and in one case, 40 points.

Right now, his athleticism is carrying him through, but he does have some talent and as he refines it, he will be a major player. Michigan and Michigan State are very interested early.

6 Durrell Summers
(St. Martin De Porres HS)
Detroit, MI
6-3/170
Michigan, Michigan State

Summers is a very fundamental player who is long and rangy. He doesn't have the quacks and explosiveness of some others in his class, but he's certainly not "slow". Summers is also a nice shooter whose release needs to be quicker to maximize his shot.

10 E'Twaun Moore
(East Chicago Central HS)
East Chicago, IN
6-3/170
Ohio State, Indiana, Illinois, Purdue, Iowa and Ball State

He averaged 20.6 points and 11.7 rebounds per game this season as a sophomore.

Emerging as one of the country's top shooting guards in the class of 2007, Moore is a quick and explosive guard who has a terrific leaping ability. He's a strong defender, and reportedly Ohio State may have already offered a scholarship.

NR Nate Miles
(Libbey HS)
Toledo, OH
6-6/170

As a skinny shooter, Miles knows how to put the ball in the basket. Right now he needs to add more to his repertoire, in addition to adding more to his frame, in order to become a top tier prospect. If he does those things, he will be ranked as high as anyone not named Mayo or Walker in the 2007 class.

If not, he's still a solid mid-major prospect.

NR Dante Jackson
(McClain HS)
Greenfield, OH
6-5/185
Ohio State, Cincinnati, North Carolina, Illinois, Kentucky, Xavier, and Dayton

As a sophomore through 23 games, averages 24 points and 11.7 rebounds a game.  For good measure, he adds 6.5 assists per game.

There are not many leaders better than Jackson. He's a great passer and a sensational playmaker. Perhaps the only thing separating him from being a good player and a big time player is shooting consistency. He's not yet a great outside shooter, and he struggles from the free throw line at times. If he refines his shooting, with his size and court awareness, he would be one of the top guards in the entire country.

Ohio State is in on Jackson very early and should have a great chance to land him as things currently stand for the 2007 class. However, it won't come without a lot of top programs trying to land him first.


Wing Forwards

1 Bill Walker
(North College Hill HS)
Cincinnati, OH
6-5/200
Cincinnati, Duke, Georgia Tech, Kentucky, Louisville, Ohio State, Michigan State, North Carolina, and West Virginia

Scores 20.1 points a game and grabs 11.3 rebounds a game.

Walker is a sensational athlete, one in which comes around very rarely. In terms of sheer talent and potential, there are some who like Walker's long-term potential just as much, if not more, than Mayo. Although Mayo's value is greater for being a 6-4 point guard, Walker is the guy that can sometimes deflate opposition with a key rebound or some highlight reel dunk.

If college becomes a likely destination, Walker will most likely follow similar footsteps as Mayo, if not the same school.  Rarely do package deals come to fruition, but this one could -- especially considering Walker followed Mayo from Rose Hill Christian to North College Hill.

NR Jon Diebler
(Sandusky HS)
Sandusky, OH
6-6/170
Committed to Valparaiso

Averaged 24 points a game this season for Upper Sandusky.

Diebler will follow the footsteps of his brother, Jake, who signed with Valparaiso this last November. The early commitment to Valpo is surprising considering the enormous potential of Diebler, but there's a lot of time for things to change.

NR Billy Allen
(Hamilton HS)
Hamilton, OH
6-6/170

As a sophomore this year for the Big Blue, Allen averaged just shy of 15 points a game.

On a couple of occasions, Allen has been spotted on the Ohio State campus for various events. Allen remains somewhat of a mid-major prospect to this point in his career, but with added quickness and refining his mid-range game further, he could become an upper-tier player. Allen is already good for sound fundamentals and great discipline as the son of the coach at Hamilton.


Power Forwards

4 Herb Pope
(Hopewell SHS)
Aliquippa, PA
6-8.5/220
Cincinnati, Ohio State, Duke, North Carolina, Pittsburgh, and Xavier

With a little bit of a unique home life, Pope probably has been pulled several directions. Pope is one of the top prospects nationally in the class of 2007, and Ohio State will be heavily involved in the mix.

6 Keenan Ellis
(North College Hill HS)
Cincinnati, OH
6-10/185
Ohio State, Indiana, Cincinnati, Kentucky, Louisville, Purdue, and Notre Dame

All Ellis has done since joining North College Hill around mid-season is average 16.7 points a game, grab 8.9 rebounds a game, and block nearly four shots per game.

Ellis is another high priority for the current basketball staff, especially considering his origin of Indianapolis -- a recruiting hot spot for Thad Matta and (assistant coach) John Groce. His true position is more of a center, and that's where he will play at the next level.

NR Devin Searcy
(Romulus Senior HS)
Romulus, MI
6-8/195
Michigan, Ohio State, Michigan State, DePaul, and Syracuse

Searcy is a big time player whose biggest weakness is that he needs to get a little stronger. At nearly 6-8, he's a bit on the thin side weighing less than 200 pounds as he projects as a four at the next level. Some believe Searcy could develop into a lottery pick some day.

NR Dallas Lauderdale
(Solon HS)
Solon, OH
6-8/210
Ohio State, Michigan, Syracuse, and North Carolina

Averaged 19.5 points per game, 13.5 rebounds a game, and four blocked shots per game for the 20-0 Solon Comets this season.

With a wingspan nearly that of a 7-foot-1 center, Lauderdale has attracted attention from the who's who of college coaches over the last three months to see him play. Currently, Ohio State will be battling Syracuse and Michigan, along with North Carolina, for his services.

NR DeJuan Pursley
(Lawrence Academy)
Groton, MA
6-9/220
Ohio State, Syracuse, Michigan

Averaging nearly 20 points and 10 rebounds a game this season.

Pursley is originally from Parma Valley Forge in the Cleveland area. He had some prior academic concerns but is now thriving in a new environment. He has enormous potential, and will be playing with David Lighty, David Jackson, and Dallas Lauderdale this spring and summer for Tim Hewitt's Cleveland Titans AAU team.

NR Christian Siakam
(Hughes Center HS)
Cincinnati, OH
6-8 235
Ohio State, Dayton, and Cincinnati

Siakam is a very strong player who also is a great athlete. Ohio State and Cincinnati are already very interested in Siakam.


Centers

1 Cole Aldrich
(Jefferson Sr.)
Bloomington, MN
6-9/230
Kansas, Marquette, Minnesota, Arizona, Duke, Wisconsin  

Averaging nearly 15 points and nine rebounds a game this season.

Aldrich is another terrific defender who is able to block a lot of shots with long arms and quick feet. He needs to get stronger and improve his array of post moves, but that should come in time. He is certainly a big time prospect. Kansas leads early for Aldrich.

3 Aaron Pogue
(Dunbar HS)
Dayton, OH
6-9 275
Ohio State, Cincinnati, Dayton, Kentucky, Michigan, and North Carolina

Averages 14.7 points and 9.5 rebounds a game.  Also shoots 56% from the field.

There are very few people in the paint with the strength and body control that Pogue possesses. He's one of the better 4/5 combos in the state, and in the nation.   If he improves his ball skills and range a little more, he becomes that much better.


CLASS OF 2008

Ohio Names to Know

PF B.J. Mullens
(Harvest Prep)
Canal Winchester, OH
6-10 220

Committed to Ohio State

PF Yancey Gates
(Hughes Center)
Cincinnati, OH
6-8 225
Ohio State, Cincinnati

Averaged 13.9 points and 9.1 rebounds a game this season

WF Rayshaun Goins
(East Tech)
Cleveland, OH
6-4
Ohio State

PF Delvon Roe
(St. Edward)
Lakewood, OH
6 -8

SF/PF William Buford
(Libbey HS)
Toledo, OH
6-5
14.2 points and 7.5 rebounds a game

PG Anthony McBride
(Withrow)
Cincinnati, OH
6-1

Averages 6.3 points and nearly three assists a game


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