Am I too excited for this guy?
Say hello to Anthony Lee Buckeye fans. He’s a 6-foot-9 230 pound dude from Columbia, Maryland whose spent the first three seasons of his college hoops career at Temple.
Lee pulled the trigger on Ohio State after a two day visit even with Indiana, Louisville, Notre Dame, Kansas and Iowa State in the mix. So that in itself has to be looked at as a pretty big win for Thad Matta.
He’s also a kid who has had a nice production arc under Fran Dunphy. He started after sitting out a year with a medical redshirt and averaged 5 points and 5 rebounds. His production spiked in his second season to just under 10 points and 7 rebounds per game, and this past season (which was a rough 9-22 year for Temple) he threw up 13.6 and 8.6. He’s also someone who knows winning having been on two NCAA Tournament teams before the Owls dropped off this past season.
But am I too excited about this kid? The second I caught wind that Ohio State was in the mix on this kid I immediately tweeted out a picture of him and said to myself, “OSU needs that!”
It’s not like this guy is a program saver, right? And he’s definitely a one-and-done guy. We know that. He’s a Temple graduate that comes in not having to sit out a year. But maybe it’s that one-and-done thing that has me most excited. He can mask the final year of Amir Williams for me.
The big guy production has fallen so much since Jared Sullinger went pro and Amir Williams in two years has made a big man pulling in 10 to 15 double-doubles in a season seem impossible. But these guys do exist. And Lee is one of them.
So yeah, I’m damn excited about this guy. An athlete who can score in a variety of ways and rebound the ball, and grab you 11 double-doubles in a season, and go for 23 and 14 against Texas…I’d say that’s an upgrade.
And his recruitment also should reassure us about Thad Matta’s recruiting abilities. You read the other school’s going after this guy, and Thad got him to commit after a couple days in Columbus. And Lee himself said Thad was the No. 1 reason.
While we’re at it, let’s lock up the Virginia Tech kid too.