Marcus Johnson
Basketball, Recruiting

Buckeyes Keep Major 2026 Hoops Talent Close To Home

New Ohio State men’s basketball head coach Jake Diebler got some welcome news on Wednesday as he landed a national top-25 player with Marcus Johnson out of Cleveland.

Dielber’s first high school commit, Marcus Johnson, is the cousin to Diebler’s first portal commit, Meechie Johnson, who opted to come back to Ohio State for a second run after spending the past two seasons at South Carolina.

But make no mistake, relation or no-relation to Meechie, Marcus is a big get as a 6-foot-1, 175-pounder out of Garfield Heights high school.

Marcus already had offers from schools like Alabama, LSU, Illinois and others and that list surely would have grown if Marcus kept his recruitment open longer.

Johnson would lead his team to a 25-2 record over the 2023-24 season and would end up as a second-team All-Ohio selection. That run saw Johnson average a little more than 23 points per game.

Recruiting has changed its complexion over the past several seasons with added importance to transfer portal players who can step in and make an immediate impact. That does not mean that high school recruiting is going away, but having to split open scholarships between the two separate pipelines shows the importance of being all-in on a high school player, especially a player with a couple more seasons of high school basketball left to play.

Ohio State does not have any players committed in the class of 2025 and Marcus Johnson makes the first for the class of 2026. It is extremely early to start counting players and figuring out how many spots remain in a certain class, especially with the increased mobility in the world of roster management.

You have to imagine that Meechie played a role with Marcus and his decision. While every player has to come to their own conclusion, having a close family member pick the Buckeyes not once, but twice, has to count as a major impact.

We will have more on this breaking news, so be sure to keep it locked in here to BuckeyeHuddle for all the latest on the Ohio State’s men’s basketball team.

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