Since Thad Matta has been in Columbus, the Buckeyes have had some of the best talent in the nation. The only problem with these players is that they all left after one season and went to the NBA prematurely.
To think that this season Greg Oden, Mike Conely Jr., Kosta Koufus, and BJ Mullens could all be at Ohio State right now paired with the current team is simply mind-boggling.
Despite everyone leaving, they are still ranked ninth in the nation and it is all thanks to Evan Turner.
For the second season in a row, Evan Turner is leading his team in points, rebounds, assists, and steals. Per game, Turner has 19.5 points, 9.3 rebounds, 5.8 assists, and about two steals. He is no doubt one of the best players, if not the best in college basketball.
Early in the season, Turner came down hard on his back and was out for six games with broken bones in his back. In those six games, they lost three and started the Big Ten season 0-2.
Since the return of Turner, the Buckeyes have lost only three games, two of them against Top 10 teams. They are currently second in the Big Ten, merely a half game behind Purdue, and they wouldn’t be here without Turner.
The Buckeyes don’t lack talent by any means, but they lack a solid point guard and Turner has made up for it. He can drive it in and score, and if you double him he can find the right player to make the shot because he’s one of the best passers in college.
The only other player close to Turner’s talent is John Wall, the freshman playing for the University of Kentucky.
John Wall was a star right out of the gates, grabbing the attention of the media and making plays that it seemed no freshman should be able to make.
He’s been an electrifying player and has been the rebirth of Kentucky basketball. He had this team compared to the best Kentucky national championship teams, but the biggest issue with him being the best is that he has a lot of help.
Yes, John Wall is electrifying and is one of the best players in college basketball, but he has DeMarcus Cousins and Patrick Patterson in the frontcourt.
Wall leads his team in assists, but barely averages more than Cousins, and is not even close to being the top rebounder with Patterson and Cousins by the glass.
I’m not sure that if you put John Wall in Turner’s situation he could have come back from an injury like that to make as much of a difference. Wall can have an off night and his team can still crush their opponents, but Turner has to come day in and day out with his best game and he has.
Most of the time, I say the best player is with whoever has the better ranked team. But this is not the case because Ohio State is ranked ninth because of Turner more than Kentucky is second because of Wall.
One thing I do hope is that these two will meet in the tournament because it would be a matchup for the ages.