It is almost that time of the year. We officially have times and TV listings for the Ohio State hoops season, which means the start of the regular season is right around the corner. To be exact, the Ohio State opener is 26 days away.
You’re Nuts for the hoops squad of Connor and Justin will be more focused on the regular season as we get much closer, but for now we are still going to play some fun hypotheticals.
Last week, we talked about the schedule Ohio State is facing and when they might face their first loss. Connor went with at home against Duke on Nov. 30 (which we now know is a 9:30 game on ESPN), while Justin went a little more optimistic with at Indiana on Jan. 6. The other option was a fun undefeated option. Talk about optimistic.
The vast majority of the votes went with the pessimistic option of against Duke at home and agreed with Connor. Connor got 68 percent (15 votes), while Justin only got 18 percent (4 votes) and the other option got 14 percent (3 votes).
So, here is the updated standings (much to Justin’s chagrin)
After 23 weeks:
(There has been one tie)
This week, we will go into our recruiting bag and debate which of the current five 2022 commits that the Buckeyes have will end up having the best career.
For a quick refresher, the options are guard Bruce Thornton, guard Roddy Gayle, guard Bowen Hardman, forward Brice Sensabaugh and forward Felix Okpara. This class is fun to talk about as they are currently ranked as the No. 3 class in the country behind Duke and Arkansas and directly in front of Michigan and Kentucky.
So without further ado, lets get into it.
Today’s Question: Who will end up being the best player from the 2022 class?
Connor: Brice Sensabaugh
Let the record reflect that this week’s prompt was Justin’s idea, and he did not specify what “best” meant. Best college career? Best player overall? Best pro? Since this wasn’t specified, I’m interpreting this as best college career. And for that reason, I’ll pick our beefy basketball son Brice Sensabaugh.
While Bruce Thornton is probably the most talented player in the 2022 class, that’s partially why I didn’t pick him. I think Thornton has the potential to leave school early and enter either the 2023 or 2024 NBA draft following his freshman or sophomore season. This is far less likely to happen for Sensabaugh — I think he’ll wind up playing a full four years of college.
Sensabaugh — the fifth member of Ohio State’s 2022 class — is the No. 75 player in the country. His stock rose like crazy over the summer, jumping from the mid-200’s on 247Sports all the way up to 75 in a matter of eight weeks. He stands 6-foot-6 and weighs 240 pounds, but has the ballhandling skills of a guard. He has an improving outside jumper, and has been a high volume shooter from the outside for much of his high school career. Clearly, with his size, he can cause some problems in the paint as well.
2022 Brice Sensabaugh @bricepsensa of E1T1/Lake Highland had some impressive moments at the E1T1 Invitational.— Endless Motor Sports (@endless_motor) July 10, 2020
6’7 wing is an outstanding perimeter shotmaker that flashes the ability to create off the bounce.
Mismatch problem based on combo of size/shotmaking/handle. pic.twitter.com/pmT0FU12d3
Honestly, I just think Sensabaugh is going to be a ton of fun to watch play. Think the skillset of EJ Liddell paired with the enthusiasm and affability of Zed Key. He’s going to be a fan favorite, but not in a “backup quarterback” type of way where fans are enamored by the idea of him more than the real thing. Sensabaugh is going to see a lot of playing time early in his career due to Ohio State’s (likely) dearth of forwards on the 2022-2023 team, once Kyle Young, Justice Sueing, Justin Ahrens, and (probably) Liddell all leave.
He probably won’t be conditioned quite to Chris Holtmann’s liking right away, and might struggle to keep up with the speed of the college game — much like Kaleb Wesson did and Key is now. But over time he’s going to contribute all over the floor in every facet of the game. The fact that some outlets still classify Sensabaugh as a guard should tell you all you need to know about his ballhandling and passing at 6-foot-6 and 240 pounds. He’ll be able to create for others, as well as scoring in the paint and knocking down some outside shots. I won’t call him a triple-double threat, but maybe a triple-double “lite.” An ALDI-brand triple-double threat, if you will.
If you’re asking me which player is most likely to be drafted in this recruiting class, it isn’t him. But if you want to know who’s going to be the best college player, and who will bring the most smiles to the faces of college basketball fans for four years, there’s only one answer, and it is big Brice Sensabaugh.
Justin: Bruce Thornton
Well, Connor, you could have asked. It’s best college career so you guessed accurately.
Apparently nobody liked my prediction of Ohio State losing their first game to Indiana, since I only got one more vote than Ohio State going undefeated — which isn’t happening. On the bright side, I have distanced myself in general from the other option, so I am feeling good about that.
My pick is the simple one here, I am going with Bruce Thornton. Thornton is currently the highest ranked recruit in the class at No. 42 in the nation and the No. 6 point guard in the 2022 class, according to 247Sports. Thornton is from Alpharetta, Georgia and plays at Milton high school. He is currently listed as a four-star, but at one point was a five-star recruit on 247Sports. He is currently listed as the top recruit in the state of Georgia.
The 6-foot-1, 205-pound guard shot up the recruiting rankings this summer after having a great AAU season, alongside other Ohio State commit Brice Sensabaugh.
Thornton is the most college ready it seems of the five and he will likely see the most time as a freshman, since he will backup Meechie Johnson with Jamari Wheeler and Jimmy Sotos leaving after this season. Thornton should slot right in behind Johnson as the backup point guard, which we know from previous years will get plenty of play.
He is also not a guy likely to be a one-and-done ,so once Johnson is gone to graduation or to the draft, Thornton will be free to run the offense as the starter. He is the best player in the class and he will have the best career.
Which 2022 commit will end up having the best career as a Buckeye?
This poll is closed
Justin: Bruce Thornton
Connor: Brice Sensabaugh