Just one short month ago, the Ohio State men’s basketball team was in disarray. After arguably the best coach in program history, Thad Matta, was let go, the Buckeyes hired Butler head coach Chris Holtmann. June is a strange time for both the firing and hiring of a new coach, so there were plenty of questions. Should they have given Matta another season to prove himself? If not, why wait until June? How is this going to affect recruiting?
In just one month in Columbus, Holtmann and his staff have silenced some of the doubters who questioned if he was the right fit for the job and already answered some of the questions that both Ohio State fans and national writers had. Already with Ohio’s No. 1 player in the class of 2017, Kaleb Wesson, the Buckeyes still needed to add more to the current class. Not only because they had just nine players on their roster, including just eight on scholarship, but because the scarlet and gray had to improve ahead of the upcoming season. With the additions of Kyle Young and most recently Musa Jallow last Friday, the Buckeyes now have the top recruiting class in the Big Ten and 24th-best in the country, according to 247Sports. With the three commits, they have a score of 57.51.
Young was somewhat of an easy get for Holtmann. The former Butler commit followed his head coach to Ohio State. It wasn’t a surprise either, considering Young is an Ohio kid that had the Buckeyes in his final five schools even before Holtmann came to Columbus.
Jallow, on the other hand, was a big-time commitment. From Bloomington, Indiana, he was in Indiana’s backyard. Although Holtmann couldn’t keep Dane Goodwin in Columbus- who was once committed to Ohio State before decommitting and committing to Notre Dame- stealing away a Top 150 talent from the Hoosier’s backyard is quite impressive.
With three commits in the 2017 class, the Buckeyes are now up to 10 players on the current roster, nine of which are on scholarship. Given the amount of players on the roster, the three will likely all have an immediate impact, especially since they are all in the Top 150 in terms of recruiting rankings.
There was concern among Ohio State fans that hiring a new head coach in June would be devastating for the program in terms of recruiting for the upcoming season. They’ve not only proven that they can do it, but with just one month under their belt in Columbus, Holtmann and his staff have already a good job of helping the Buckeyes get back atop the Big Ten and (hopefully) among the best teams in the country in the near future.