BJ Mullens Starts
steps into the spot vacated by Kosta Koufos and more appropriately Greg Oden. When
he enrolled in class this week, he became the third freshman center to be
considered a first round NBA draft selection before playing a game at Ohio State.
By Steve Patterson
Centers Leaving Early
Both Oden and Koufos left after one
year in Columbus
to enter the NBA. Expectations are high for Mullens, the 7’1” center from
nearby Canal Winchester who committed to be a Buckeye prior to entering High
School and could follow the others out of the NCAA after one year of play.
chemistry was a little off last year according to reports on Head Coach Thad
Matta’s feeling about the 2007 Ohio State basketball team. Last summer Kosta Koufos and David Lighty
were not a part of the team summer conditioning as they took part in overseas
league play. That lack of chemistry translated into a mediocre season only
spared by a nice run the NIT tournament for its championship trophy.
This year all six incoming players
are on campus and starting class. Mullens, William
Buford, Anthony Crater and Walter Offutt are sharing a suite together while
conditioning, studying and getting to know each other. The bonus of being on
campus this summer is the chance to play with two NBA first round selections. They
will get to practice with Oden and Michael Conley Jr, who happen to be taking
summer classes also at Ohio
State and plan on scrimmaging
with the team.
the draft projections remain the same after Mullen’s first year at Ohio State,
he can be a first round selection into the NBA next year. Earlier projected
#1 overall, the 255 lbs low-block presence could very well have a Greg
Oden-like impact as a freshman for the Buckeyes.