The Ohio State men’s basketball program will kick off the summer evaluation period a little closer to home than usual.

Starting at 5 p.m. Wednesday, college coaches can canvass the country as the first of the three five-day July live evaluation periods begins. The Buckeyes will be out and about, but first they will host one of their primary recruiting targets for the class of 2019 on an official visit.

Five-star point guard DJ Carton on Wednesday is taking his third and final scheduled official visit when he checks out the Buckeyes. Ranked as the No. 21 overall prospect and the No. 2 point guard in the nation by 247Sports, Carton already has visited Indiana and Michigan.

On Sunday, Carton, of Bettendorf, Iowa, announced that he had trimmed his list down to three finalists: the Buckeyes, Hoosiers and Wolverines.

Final 3‼️

— DJ Carton (@DJCarton) July 8, 2018

Curtis Clark, the coach at Bettendorf High School, said in the spring that Carton’s plan was to make a choice sometime this fall. That timeline might have been accelerated.

“I think all the attention is probably wearing on him a little bit and he’s hopeful he can make this decision sooner rather than later,” Clark told The Dispatch on Wednesday. “There’s a lot of people trying to grab for his attention and I think he’s looking forward to going back to being a high school kid and making life simple again.”

Clark added that Carton’s pursuit of normalcy is prompting the current rash of visits.

“He’s hopeful these three visits will give him some clarity on where he wants to go and if that’s the case, then I wouldn’t be surprised if he makes the decision in a week or two,” Clark said. “If it does nothing than confuse him more, he might be looking back into September.”

In trimming his list on Sunday, Carton cut Iowa from consideration, as well as Xavier and Marquette. Removing the home-state Hawkeyes was difficult for Carton, Clark said.

“We talked about that and I know he had a little regret about that just because he knew he was going to be letting a lot of people down, but he just didn’t feel like that was the right fit for him,” Clark said. “I told him, you’ve got to go with that, then.

“He’s put an awful lot of time and this is his story he needs to live and not live it for somebody else. Do what he feels comfortable with. If those fans are truly DJ Carton fans, they’ll continue to be his fan.”

Carton will also not participate in the first live evaluation period for two reasons, Clark said: He’s dealing with a slight knee sprain, and he will take the ACT this Saturday. He’s hopeful he will be able to play AAU basketball before the summer is over, Clark said.

Ohio State has one verbal commitment for 2019 in four-star forward Alonzo Gaffney, who is transferring to Wolfeboro (New Hampshire) Brewster Academy for his senior season. The Buckeyes have just one true point guard on the roster for next season in Florida State transfer C.J. Walker, who will sit out this season to satisfy NCAA transfer rules.

They have offered a pair of 2020 point guards from Ohio in Dublin Coffman’s Dom Penn and Maumee Valley Country Day School’s Zeb Jackson and have shown interest in other guards in the 2019 class. But how they proceed would likely depend on Carton’s plans.