Sunday, July 18, 2010

Can Ohio State Really Replace Evan Turner?

Posted by CoHoops DeAnte Mitchell
Ohio State was a really good squad last season with the services of Evan Turner. 

Once he broke his back, the Buckeyes' dropped out of the spotlight and looked for answers.

When really it was very simple; The Buckeyes' needed Turner's guidance in hopes to make a run in the NCAA tournament.

Once he returned, they got just that. Turner led the Buckeyes' to a NCAA tournament berth and a Big Ten Championship. Not to mention, he hit a great three-point shot against Michigan to win the game.

Everything was achieved by Turner to keep the Buckeyes’ competitive.

However, next season the Buckeyes' aren't suppose to have problems with their roster; but really, can Ohio State replace Turner?

Turner was the National Player of the Year in college basketball, not to mention the second selection in the 2010 NBA draft. When the team needed a bucket they didn't go to Jon Diebler, David Lighty or any other Buckeye but Turner.

So can they really replace him? To Ohio State's credit, they did bring in a monstrous recruiting class to go along with their returning players from last year's squad.

Heading into next season, they seem to have enough talent so they wouldn't need a player to do-it-all like Turner did. But the leadership role is a question.

Lighty the 6-foot-5 wingman is going to be looked on to take the leadership role in the offense. However, I don't think he has the ability to do what Turner did for the Buckeyes' last season. Diebler doesn't have the handle or intensity.

So Turner's predecessor is unclear. 

However, DeShaun Thomas, Lighty and Diebler can collectively work as Turner's replacements.

Last season, Turner did it all. He shared the ball, rebounded and scored.

Thomas is the most similar thing to Turner, although, he isn't equipped with elite ball-handling skills to play the point. He is a slashing forward that has soft hands around the rim and knows how to finish strong.

The McDonald's All-American will likely start on the wing for the Buckeyes'. He is going to bring you intensity on both ends of the floor.

Lighty and Diebler will have to be the leaders. While playing beside Turner, it's not crazy to think his mentality rubbed off on these two a bit.

If anyone needs to step up and be the leader of this team, it’s Lighty. He is the 6-foot-5 wingman that made Turner's assist skyrocket.

He runs well in transition and a pretty good set shooter. With the ability to become an instant scoring threat on the wing, Lighty should look to take control on offense for the Buckeyes' to be successful.

Filling The Player of the Year, and No. 2 overall draft pick Turner's shoes will be a tough job to do. But putting three players in the rotation that share similar qualities to Turner should will be enough to fulfill the void.

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