Felix Okpara to return to the Ohio State basketball team for junior season

The Ohio State basketball team got the return of a very important piece to next year’s team.

Mar 19, 2024; Columbus, OH, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes center Felix Okpara (34) dunks over Cornell Big
Mar 19, 2024; Columbus, OH, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes center Felix Okpara (34) dunks over Cornell Big / Adam Cairns/Columbus Dispatch / USA
facebooktwitterreddit

Jake Diebler and the Ohio State basketball team received news late Monday night that Felix Okpara plans to return to the Buckeyes for his junior season. There were a handful of key players Diebler needed to have return for next season, and Okpara most certainly was one of them.

The return of Ohio State’s leading rebounder and shot-blocker is a great start to the first offseason with Jake Diebler at the helm. In 35 games played in his sophomore season, Okpara averaged 6.6 points per game on 58.6% shooting from the field, along with pulling down  6.4 rebounds per game and 2.4 blocks per game.

Okpara saw a significant usage increase this season starting all but two games in his sophomore season. Okpara continued to produce in meaningful minutes forcing his playing time to rise eight minutes from his freshman to sophomore season.

The Buckeyes starting center put in double figures in points in five of the last nine games of the season, including each of the Ohio State basketball team’s three NIT games. In those three postseason games, Okpara averaged 13.7 points per game, 6.7 rebounds per game, and 2.3 blocks per game.

Okpara took some major strides to finish his sophomore campaign and showed why he is a very important piece to retain in Columbus this offseason. He’s a force on the glass and an elite rim protector who could have a shot at Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year next season. I’m looking forward to seeing what Jake Diebler can do with Felix Okpara in the big man's third year at Ohio State.

Ohio State basketball loses key player to transfer portal. Ohio State basketball loses key player to transfer portal. dark. Next

We’re still waiting for a few more players from this season's Ohio State basketball team to announce their future plans. Follow us on Twitter, @ScarletandGame, to stay updated on all the latest Ohio State basketball recruiting news.