“I don’t have a ring,” Wesson said. “That’s something I really want, a ring, whether it’s Big Ten regular season or the tournament championship. That has been in the back of my mind.”
- Andre Wesson, via Stephen Means, Cleveland dot com
Ohio State’s success in the 2019-20 season is going to depend pretty heavily on the Wesson brothers. That seemed pretty unlikely a few years ago, as Stephen notes early in his piece, establishing the humble beginnings that Andre Wesson arrived at Ohio State from. Now, four years later, he may be the most crucial part of Ohio State’s roster, as the lone senior, and easily the most natural leader of the bunch.
I would expect that Andre will serve as a leader in the same way that Keita Bates-Diop did in 2017, keeping the team from ever getting too high or too low, and remaining a bit of a steadying force whenever the Buckeyes need it. There are more vocal leaders, and more experienced leaders, as mentioned in the piece, but Andre’s demeanor kept Ohio State calm last season, and should play an even bigger factor in his senior year.
If he can step up and continue his development as a scorer, that dream of a ring seems well within reach for Wesson and the Buckeyes.
“All you have to do to know the value of Wesson is look back to last season when he was suspended for three games. Ohio State lost them all. He came back and the Buckeyes beat Indiana to essentially earn an NCAA tournament bid. Wesson flirted with the NBA draft. He’s back and with him the Buckeyes should be in the NCAA tournament again. Without him, they would not.”
While I’m not sold on Katz’s assertion that Ohio State would miss the tournament with Kaleb Wesson, I certainly agree that Kaleb is one of the most important players in the Big Ten, and on this list, he checks in at third, just behind Cassius Winston and Anthony Cowan Jr.
Top 5 most important @B1GMBBall players, according to @TheAndyKatz!— NCAA March Madness (@marchmadness) June 14, 2019
1. Cassius Winston
2. Anthony Cowan Jr.
3. Kaleb Wesson
4. Zavier Simpson
5. Nojel Eastern
Just like with his big brother’s leadership, Ohio State will certainly need Kaleb to be the best version of himself if they want to compete for a Big Ten Championship, and perhaps even a national championship. The team will be significantly better around Kaleb this year than it was last year, but he is still an extremely dominant force, and having him on the court makes everything flow much smoother.
That last part, having him on the court, will be key. If Wesson can keep the fouls to a minimum, and avoid any suspensions, he could be in for an All-American caliber season. If not? The Buckeyes may be headed for the NCAA tournament bubble for a second straight season.
Lonsway grabs another award
Buckeye freshman phenom pitcher Seth Lonsway has been recognized quite a few times already for his excellent play this past season, but yesterday he picked up another accolade, as he was named a Freshman All-American by Rawlings. This is his fifth postseason accolade, according to Ohio State Buckeyes dot com.
He has also been recognized as a second team Freshman All-American by the NCBWA, on the Big Ten All-Freshman team, Third-Team All Big Ten, and on the Big Ten All-Tournament team. In just his first year of college baseball, as a redshirt freshman, Lonsway made quite the impression, leading the Big Ten in strikeouts and putting up an 8-4 record with a sub-4 ERA. He’ll be one of the core pieces of Ohio State’s rotation next season.