Bowen Hardman fielded no shortage of congratulations when he committed to Ohio State for the class of 2022.
Among them was a message from friend, occasional teammate and fellow recruit Shawn Phillips Jr. The center from Dayton Belmont, who has played AAU ball as Hardman’s teammate, said he’s safe and doing well through the COVID-19 pandemic and the widespread national protests over racial injustice.
The inability to take recruiting visits, plus the ongoing postponement of AAU basketball, has limited his exposure but not affected his recruitment, Phillips said, because he still has plenty of time to make a college decision.
"I’m safe and doing OK through all the protesting and everything," he told The Dispatch. "It’s been very tough (to think about colleges), but there haven’t been many new schools to come on board."
The Buckeyes offered Phillips a scholarship during the same weekend as Hardman. Both players attended an Oct. 5 home football game during a weekend that also served as official visits for 2021 prospects Malaki Branham and Efton Reid.
Hardman committed to the Buckeyes on May 13.
"We know each other well basketball-wise and also personally, too," Phillips said. "I played against him and with him in some camps and had a few visits with him also. I was surprised he committed so soon, but I’m happy for him."
In new rankings released Thursday, Hardman is listed by Rivals.com as a three-star prospect who is rated No. 135 nationally. Phillips is a four-star prospect rated No. 44 nationally and No. 3 in Ohio.
Since Ohio State offered him last October, Phillips said he’s also landed offers from Indiana, Cincinnati and TCU. At Ohio State, he said he talks with coach Chris Holtmann and assistant coach Ryan Pedon "usually once a week."
The Buckeyes have extended a pair of new scholarship offers.
Wednesday night, four-star shooting guard Dallan "Deebo" Coleman announced an Ohio State offer with a post to Twitter.
The 6-foot-6, 195-pound guard from Callahan (Florida) West Nassau County is rated as the No. 48 national recruit, the No. 4 prospect from Florida and the No. 10 player at his position in the country according to the 247Sports.com composite rankings. He also holds offers from Memphis, Louisville, Florida, Clemson and Florida State, among others.
Honored, appreciative, & blessed to have received a offer from @OhioStateHoops thanks @ChrisHoltmann @ryanpedon pic.twitter.com/0cJ2RWvb2I— Dallan "Deebo" Coleman (@deebo923) June 3, 2020
Further down the road, Ohio State extended its first known offer for the class of 2023 when it did so to Cam Christie. The Buckeyes have already offered his older brother, Max, who is a five-star prospect in the class of 2021. The Christie brothers hail from Rolling Meadows, Illinois.
yessir bro https://t.co/w01qLJB4Re— Max Christie (@Max12Christie) June 4, 2020
New Rivals rankings
Ohio State commitments Kalen Etzler and Meechie Johnson both made the cut with Wednesday’s release of the latest Rivals 150 for the class of 2021.
In the newly updated rankings, Etzler checks in at No. 115 nationally, just ahead of Johnson at No. 125. Etzler is listed as a four-star recruit and Johnson a three-star prospect.
Ohio’s top prospect is four-star center Charles Bediako, a native of Ontario who like Johnson is playing for Andrews Osborne Academy in Willoughby. He is the No. 25 national recruit. Branham, a top recruiting target for the Buckeyes, is close behind at No. 35 and is also a four-star prospect. He plays for Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary.
Here is a recent update on Branham.