Turner Confirms He Made OSU Unofficial Visit

Illinois basketball standout Evan Turner told reporters in North Carolina at the Tournament of Champions he made an unofficial visit to Ohio State earlier in May. Turner, ranked 49th nationally by ScoutHoops.com, said he is looking at a small group of schools. We also have notes on two other potential OSU targets at the TOC.

Westchester (Ill.) St. Joseph's standout Evan Turner confirmed to reporters at this weekend's Tournament of Champions in North Carolina that he made a recent unofficial visit to Ohio State.

The 6-6 Turner, ranked as the nation's No. 49 prospect by ScoutHoops.com, visited OSU over the weekend of May 15.

"I had a great time at Ohio State," Turner said. "I've got family in Columbus. My dad's whole side of the family lives in Columbus. They live in Canal Winchester, actually."

Turner confirmed that he was set to verbal to N.C. State. Then original plan was he would commit to the Wolfpack while in the state for the TOC this weekend. But when Herb Sendek left N.C. State for Arizona State, those plans changed.

"I've got a lot of offers on the table right now," said Turner, who leads the Illinois Wolves AAU team. "I know Wake Forest, Indiana, Illinois, DePaul, Ohio State, N.C. State, Miami (Fla.), Virginia, Iowa and Notre Dame have all offered. I'm also hearing from Duke lately."

Turner said he was contacted earlier this week by Duke assistant Chris Collins, but the Blue Devils have not offered yet.

"They said they want to evaluate me in July," Turner said. "Duke has not seen me play. They told me they would watch me in July."

Though the Blue Devils are a little late arriving to the party, their ability to make up ground with elite players is well documented.

"They are one of the top programs in the country and they are always near the top of the rankings and on TV," he said. "When they want to talk to you and recruit you, you have to listen to what they have to say."

Turner is ranked as the nation's No. 8 small forward – a position he has grown into, literally.

"I was a 5-10 point guard one year and then I grew eight inches in the span of 12 months," Turner said. "When you grow that fast, it takes some getting used to. The flip side of that is I can handle the ball pretty well for a guy who plays on the wing, and I could slide over and run the point if my team needs it. I can also post up small guards because of my size."

Another high major trait Turner possesses is the ability to lock up opponents on the defensive end of the floor, but he still needs to work on a few things as well.

"Right now I need to get better as a perimeter shooter and continue to work on getting stronger and tightening up on my ball handling," he said. "I've seen a lot so far this spring in terms of competition and I know what it takes to play with the top players. I'm not going to be out-worked by any of them. You can be tired after the game."

Turner has also visited Wisconsin unofficially and was hoping to make a side trip to Wake Forest while in North Carolina.

The Buckeyes already have verbals from Upper Sandusky guard Jon Diebler and Canton GlenOak 7-2 forward Kosta Koufos. They figure to take at least two more players in this class. Solon forward Dallas Lauderdale is believed to favor the Buckeyes. A wing player like Turner could help the Buckeyes round out a strong four-man class.

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Most of Ohio State's key recruiting targets are playing at AAU events in Tennessee or at The Hoop in Columbus.

But OSU could be after a pair of top-30 big men in 6-8 J.J. Hickson of Georgia and 6-9 Julian Vaughn of Virginia.

Hickson, rated 20th overall nationally by ScoutHoops.com, lists offers from a wide range of major conference schools and confirmed at the TOC he is interested in Ohio State.

Vaughn, rated 26th nationally, confirmed his plans to play at Oak Hill (Va.) Academy this coming season. He listed Duke, North Carolina, Florida State, Ohio State, Georgetown, Virginia and Tennessee as his favorites.

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