Ohio State Basketball Projected Lineup Without EJ Liddell and Duane Washington
Ohio State is considered a consensus top ten team by most media members, and some even have them in their top three to start the season.
This ranking comes with the agreement that EJ Liddell and Duane Washington will be suiting up in scarlet and grey for the 2021-22 campaign; however, what will head coach, Chris Holtmann’s, game plan be if these two take their talents to the next level?
Recruits and Transfers
Ohio State had a very solid recruiting class and Holtmann didn’t have to travel very far to secure his guys. Both recruits came from inside Ohio, and they have a chance to make an impact right away. 6-foot-8 forward, Kalen Etzler, won’t see too much action this year, but the four-star shooting guard Malaki Branham could easily become an opening day starter if Liddell and Washington stay declared for the draft.
Not only that, but the Buckeyes poached two solid starters from rival Big Ten teams with open transfers for the 2021 season. Joey Brunk is a big bruising center who fills a vital need for an undersized Buckeye team. Also, they stole Penn State’s Jamari Wheeler, who lacks much of an offensive game, but could become one of the best on ball defenders we’ve seen in Columbus since the days of Aaron Craft and Shannon Scott.
Don’t be surprised if you see a ton of different starting lineups this year, but most of those lineups will include Justice Sueing, Kyle Young, and Justin Ahrens. However, I’m not fully sold on Justin Ahrens as a starting two guard. He can knock down open threes, but he tends to struggle to get open, and can seem to disappear against strong defensive units.
So here’s my projected opening night starting lineup if both Liddell and Washington don’t return for one more go around.
PG: Jimmy Sotos
SG: Justin Ahrens
SF: Justice Sueing
PF: Kyle Young
C: Joey Brunk
Bench (Who will play):
Sixth Man: Zed Key
2: Seth Towns
3: Jamari Wheeler
4: Malaki Branham
5: Meechie Johnson Jr.
6: Eugene Brown (Minimal minutes)
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