“The NBA’s 2018 Las Vegas Summer League is set to begin on July 6, just two weeks after the draft, and it’s time to see who will make a Kyle Kuzma-esque impression and steal the show.”
-Matt Ellentuck, SB Nation
Even though there’s over a month before Ohio State is back in session and before sports are back in action, there’s still something to occupy your July: the NBA Summer League. Four former Buckeyes will get their first taste of playing in the pros with a run in the Las Vegas league.
Here’s a look at how to catch some of your favorite Buckeyes over the next few weeks, with the first set of games getting underway tonight.
Byron Mullens (Orlando Magic) @ 5:00 p.m. ET: Nets vs. Magic, NBA TV
Mullens hasn’t worn an Ohio State jersey since the 2008-09 season, and has been trying to find a landing spot in the NBA ever since — that’s nearly a decade! He spent five years playing for teams like OKC and Charlotte, before taking his talents overseas.
He’s bounced around European league’s since 2014, and most recently signed — for the second time — with the Sioux Falls Skyforce of the NBA G League.
Trevor Thompson (Brooklyn Nets) @ 5:00 p.m. ET: Nets vs. Magic, NBA TV
Thompson went undrafted in 2017 and spent time on the 2017 NBA Summer League roster for the Boston Celtics before ultimately landing with the Santa Cruz Warriors of the G League.
He finished his first season with playing time in 38 games (earning two starts) and averaged 11.7 minutes per game. Overall he went 67 of 128 field goal attempts, and a pretty solid 51 of 68 free throws on the year. Thompson also claimed 113 defensive rebounds, 23 blocks, 20 assists and 18 steals — in addition to his 34 turnovers.
Shannon Scott (Charlotte Hornets) @ 5:30 p.m. ET: Thunder vs. Hornets, ESPNU (WatchESPN)
After going undrafted in 2015, Scott bounced around from Summer League to G League teams, and was once again invited to participate in the summer slate this year, this time by the Charlotte Hornets.
He’s been a starter for most of his two seasons in the G League, first with the Raptors 905 and then with the Long Island Nets. In March 2016, Scott was responsible for the first triple-double in Rapotors 905’s history, thanks to a performance that included 24 points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists.
Keita Bates-Diop (Minnesota Timberwolves) @ 11:00 p.m. ET: Nuggets vs. Timberwolves, NBA TV
The first Buckeye basketball player to be drafted since 2015, KBD is ready to prove that he should have been a first-round pick. After falling to No. 48 in the NBA Draft last month, the Timberwolves have wasted no time in getting the big man some work, and are expecting him to develop during the Summer League series.
So, while we have a bit before we’re back to covering ourselves in Scarlet and Gray, we can still cheer for some Buckeyes in the meantime.
“If you are an NFL team looking for a help on the back end, chances are that you have spent substantial time watching Ohio State defensive tape over the last few years. The Buckeyes have reloaded in this area with yet another enticing pro prospect.”
-Lance Zierlein on Damon Arnette, NFL.com
Lance Zierlein of NFL.com ranked the Top 10 DBs to watch heading into the 2018 season, and to the surprise of no one, a Buckeye made the list. At this point, it’s no surprise that NFL teams would be keeping a close eye on defensive backs coming out of Ohio State — especially during the Urban Meyer era under now-former assistant coach Kerry Coombs.
While Coombs may now be coaching in the NFL, the pipeline he created from OSU to the pros has yet to simmer down. Arnette looks to be the next guy to keep the #DBU tradition alive (not to mention Kendall Sheffield has a chance at doing the same) and could be another first round draft pick out of OSU.
Zierlein’s scouting report continues, “Arnette is bigger and stronger than his 2017 teammate Denzel Ward, but he lacks Ward’s foot quickness and long speed (most cornerbacks do). Where Arnette shines: his physical play from press coverage and his ability to disrupt the early stages of a route.”
With one more season to go, Arnette will have all eyes on him as games get underway, and will be looking to boost his profile with more NFL scouts paying attention.
“Ohio State director of golf Therese Hession will represent the United States and the Buckeye golf programs when she helps lead the United States team at the 2018 Arnold Palmer Cup this weekend in Évian-les-Bains, France.”
-Ohio State Athletics
Alongside Ryan Hybl of Oklahoma, Hession will coach the American team during the Ryder Cup-style event. Teeing off at Evian Resort Golf Club, this is the first time the competition field will include men’s and women’s collegiate golfers.
The golfers are in good hands under Hession, who has led the Buckeyes for 27 seasons, claiming 10 Big Ten titles, 17 NCAA Championships appearances and 25 NCAA Regionals. She’s been named Big Ten Coach of the Year an incredible seven times and National Coach of the Year twice (1997 by the NGCA; 2014 by Golfweek).
“I am honored and privileged to help lead the U.S. Squad at the 2018 Palmer Cup in France,” Hession said. “The matches should be extremely competitive featuring the best men and women in collegiate golf.”
The Ohio State director was inducted into the Ohio State Athletics Hall of Fame in 2015, and most recently, she led the Buckeyes to the NCAA quarterfinals in 2017.
Hession has a few more reasons to be excited heading into the weekend, with news that four members of the Ohio State women’s golf team were named 2017-18 All-American Scholars by the WGCA. Carrying a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.50, Jaclyn Lee, Alanis Sakuma, Adeena Shears, and Rio Watanabe earned the honor, with Lee claiming her third and Watanabe her second WGCA recognition.
Buckeye Bits from the NFL
On Noah Brown and the WR competition in Dallas — Ryan Ratty, Blogging The Boys
“Brown may have a slight advantage given his experience from last year, but his limitations are more due to lack of breakaway speed and suspect route-running. At the age of just 21-years-old, Brown has so far been mainly a blocking WR, but that is a very important position for the Cowboys.”
On John Simon and the LB position for the Colts — Brett Mock, Stampede Blue
“It would also be particularly aided by the coaching staff allowing John Simon to move on from a very difficult transition to defensive end, one where he is outclassed by a number of players on the roster already, and back to a strong side role.”
On how Billy Price and Sam Hubbard improve the Bengals’ roster — John Sheeran, Cincy Jungle
“Billy Price doesn’t have to be the second coming of Nick Mangold to be considered an upgrade over Russell Bodine. The praise the coaches had for Price mostly pertained to the intangibles he possesses and the personality that make Price who he is as a student of the game and leader in the locker room.”
On if the Cowboys should sign Johnathan Hankins — Connor Livesay, Blogging The Boys
“Hankins was a constant thorn in the Dallas offense’s side with his domination against the run. Hankins is known for being one of the best run-stuffing defensive tackles in the league using his massive frame and brutal strength to win at the point of attack, and take up space to allow other defensive players to flourish.”
O-H!@denzelward pic.twitter.com/kT6TqXQfvl— Cleveland Browns (@Browns) July 6, 2018
Interesting dynamics with Browns 1st round picks. 4th pick Denzel Ward has no incentive to sign before 1st pick Baker Mayfield. If Mayfield gets guarantees without offsets, Ward will likely feel he should get the same. 2017 1st overall pick by Browns Myles Garrett has offsets.— Joel Corry (@corryjoel) July 6, 2018
STICK TO SPORTS
- Get ready for Fortnite Season 5 with everything you need to know about changes and what to expect.
- Former Ohio State football player C.J. Barnett will now be patrolling Columbus streets as a member of the 129th Police Recruit Class that graduated on Friday.
- The Columbus housing market is now No. 2 in the entire country.