Tom Dienhart, Senior Writer, April 23, 2015

Ohio State freshman star D?Angelo Russell is turning pro. No surprise, as Russell is widely projected as a lottery pick.

Russell was a sensation in 2014-15, living up to his billing as the top incoming player in the Big Ten en route to earning Freshman All-American and consensus first-team All-Big Ten honors.

The 6-5, 180-pound Louisville, Kebntucky, native led all freshmen in the nation in scoring (19.3), entering double-figures in 33 of 35 games. Russell also averaged 5.7 rebounds and 5.0 assists.

Russell?s departure creates another hole in an Ohio State roster that already must replace guard Shannon Scott, forward Sam Thompson and big men Amir Williams, Anthony Lee and Trey McDonald.

Thad Matta will have to build around sophomores Jae?Sean Tate, Kam Williams and Keita Bates-Diop, along with junior Marc Loving, coming off a 24-11 season (11-7 Big Ten) that saw the Buckeyes win a game in the NCAA tourney. OSU has gone to the Big Dance in each of the last six years.

A raft of promising newcomers-the best in the Big Ten–also will bolster the OSU roster, including 6-11 Virginia Tech transfer Trevor Thompson. And one of the Big Ten?s most-touted collections of freshmen-five of them–also will arrive in Columbus headed by guards Austin Grandstaff and JaQuan Lyle, a former Oregon commit who is the most hyped of them all.


About Tom Dienhart senior writer Tom Dienhart is a veteran sports journalist who covers Big Ten football and men's basketball for and BTN TV. Find him on Twitter and Facebook, read all of his work at, and subscribe to his posts via RSS. Also, send questions to his weekly mailbag using the form below and read all of his previous answers in his reader mailbag section.

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