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Update on Ohio State four-star shooting guard target

The basketball Buckeyes have competition for one of Ohio’s best

Steve Helwagen, 247Sports

Ryan Day and the Ohio State football coaches have been extremely busy while remaining inside their homes due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Ohio State has picked up multiple verbal commitments in its 2022 class the last couple weeks and its 2021 class could be one for the ages. With a total of 17 pledges, Ohio State’s 2021 class has earned a total of 295.41 points in the updated 247Sports Team Rankings. In comparison, the second best team, Tennessee, is at 232.78 and Ohio State’s highly touted 2020 class finished at 295.08 with 25 commitments. If the Buckeyes continue recruiting at this rate, the race for the top spot in the nation may already be over.

With all of the recent successes, Monday was unusually quiet for the program in terms of football recruiting. However, we did get some news on the basketball side of things. Make sure to follow Land-Grant Holy Land throughout the week as we keep you updated on the latest news surrounding the world of Ohio State recruiting.

2021 SG target talks recruitment

Recruiting hasn’t just been a focus on the gridiron for Ohio State these last few months. With multiple transfers following an early-terminated college basketball season, Chris Holtmann and the basketball Buckeyes worked hard to fill out a roster for next year.

After adding multiple guys through the portal, Holtmann and co. have been able to shift focus back to recruiting the nation’s top prospects. Monday, the team learned the competition for one the best in-state talents just got stiffer. Speaking with Jake Weingarten of stockrisers.com, four-star shooting guard Malaki Branham (Akron, OH/St. Vincent-St. Mary) provided an update on his recruitment during these unprecedented times.

The main update in Branham’s recruitment is the uptick in interest from Marquette. The Golden Eagles had a Zoom meeting with the guard in late April that led to an official scholarship offer. Since the offer, the two parties have had another virtual meeting.

However, the increase in contact with Marquette has not correlated to less time speaking with the Ohio State coaching staff. The Buckeyes were one of the first teams, alongside Xavier, to make virtual contact with Branham since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Branham is not only one of the best recruits out of the state of Ohio, he is also one of the top prospects in the nation. The 247Sports Composite Rankings have Branham as the No. 2 prospect in Ohio and the No. 4 SG in the nation. Branham is also the No. 26 overall recruit in the 2021 class.

While Branham has kept his recruitment close to the vest, the in-state Buckeyes have long been thought to be top contenders for his services. Alongside Marquette and Xavier, Ohio State’s competition includes Alabama, Missouri, Florida, Michigan, Louisville, Pittsburgh, Iowa, Cincinnati and Kansas State.

Quick Hits:

As mentioned earlier, the 2021 247Sports Composite Rankings received an update this week. With that, a few future Buckeyes saw their rankings move around. Below are a few notable movements: