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2023 Buckeye signee wins Ohio’s Mr. Basketball, new names added to spring visitor list

The beat goes on for both Ohio State football and basketball recruiting.

Buckeye signee wins Ohio’s Mr. Basketball

This basketball season for Ohio State has been a rollercoaster of emotions. From a solid start to a rather terrible finish, the Buckeyes weren’t up the their typical level of play this year. However, the Big Ten Tournament certainly gave some new life into this program and some excitement for the future.

It may not be what every fan wants to hear right now, but the truth is there’s still room for optimism in regards to what can happen as soon as next year for Ohio State on the hardwood. With Holtmann reaffirming to the Columbus Dispatch that he’s, “not going anywhere” in the midst of Notre Dame rumors, the continuity next year is important.

One of the strongest factors in why Holtmann would want to stay in Columbus is definitely what he has coming in with the 2023 recruiting cycle. Signing four guys in a top-10 nationally ranked class, the coaching staff is adding some stellar talent to a roster that will have plenty of youth to it in 2023-2024.

While the transfer portal will likely be used to their advantage as well, the Buckeyes are excited about their potential, and a big part of that will be from their own backyard thanks to Pickerington Ohio’s Devin Royal.

The No. 49 player nationally, Royal is the eighth-best power forward in the country and Ohio’s top player in 2023 per the 247Sports Composite. Arguably one of the more important signings for Ohio State this cycle, on Wednesday Royal continued to add to his already impressive list of accolades as he was named Ohio’s Mr. Basketball.

A prestigious award for the most outstanding player in the state, Royal certainly fits that mold at 6-foot-7, 210 pounds. Not a finished product either, it’s fun to think of the potential he has when he gets on campus and what he can be for the Buckeyes during his career.

The last Buckeye to win the award was Malaki Branham in 2021, and that worked out pretty well for all involved. Royal is the 12th player all-time for Ohio State to win that award, and again is another reason as to why the future in this program is brighter than the last few months. This very well could get turned around sooner rather than later.

Quick Hits

  • The Buckeyes have hit a hiatus for spring football practice thanks to spring break, but the rest of March and early April are shaping up to be rather significant in terms of recruiting efforts. The staff hasn’t hosted tons of national targets on campus yet, but those visit opportunities are coming in the near future, with April 1 being one of the bigger days planned.

More names will be added in the coming weeks, but one new name has surfaced as Georgia native, Walter Matthews has been slotted to also be on campus that day. A 6-foot-7, 245 pound tight end, Matthews is currently the No. 122 player nationally, the seventh best at his position, and the 20th player in Georgia per the 247Sports Composite.

Keenan Bailey is no stranger to high-profile recruiting, and now at the helm of the tight end position, he’s getting a chance to show first hand why the Buckeyes need to be right atop of his list when it comes down to decision time.

  • Sticking with football recruiting, there was some Ohio State smoke in the air via Rivals when current Alabama quarterback commit, Julian Sayin, shared that Ohio State is still very much trying to get him on campus and recruiting him heavily.

Ryan Day and the Buckeyes are clearly still in on Sayin as a potential target, and though the No. 10 player nationally in the 247Sports Composite has been committed to the Tide since November of last year, Day has enough on his resume to at least keep Julian thinking.

A visit has not yet been scheduled and may not be, but Day and position coach Corey Dennis are very much at the top when it comes to quarterback recruiting, and can’t be counted out at least for now.