The Ohio State basketball team already had a pretty jam-packed schedule heading into the 2019-20 season but now it is even more difficult. It has been announced the Buckeyes will face off against the Villanova Wildcats in the Gavitt Tipoff Games on November 13th.
This is rather surprising news. Ohio State already has a difficult home opener against Cincinnati as well as games against West Virginia, Kentucky and an unannounced opponent in the Big Ten/ACC challenge, which takes place every season.
The contest with the Bearcats just got much tougher too as Jarron Cumberland announced his return. Many believed he would enter the upcoming NBA Draft.
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Cumberland was the American Conference’s player of the year last season and led the team in scoring averaging 18 points per game.
The chances of the Buckeyes receiving a difficult opponent in the ACC Challenge is high too as they are probably going to be considered a top 25 team in the pre-season. They have a top 10 recruiting class coming in and it was announced yesterday last year’s leading scorer Kaleb Wesson will return for his Junior season.
Wesson averaged 14.6 points per game last season and grabbed 7 rebounds a game for a team high as well.
Wesson’s importance to the Buckeye team cannot be understated. It wasn’t just the numbers he put up but the rest of the team played better with the big guy on the floor.
Whether it’s the leadership the big guy brings, the attention he draws from opponents or a combination of the two, Wesson’s return means big things for the Buckeyes.
Not only is the return of Wesson important, but the incoming freshman should have Buckeye fans excited. They will enhance the level of play coach Chris Holtmann’s squad will bring to the court during the 2019-2020 season.
These things, combined with key returning players like Luther Mohammed, Andre Wesson, Duane Washington and more, it should be interesting to see how the young Buckeyes adapt to such a tough schedule.