Men's basketball: After testing NBA process, Kaleb Wesson is returning for junior season at Ohio State

Adam Jardy
Kaleb Wesson takes the court before a game against Rutgers on Feb. 2 in Value City Arena. [Kyle Robertson]

After testing the waters of the NBA draft process, Kaleb Wesson is returning to Ohio State for his junior season.

The Buckeyes announced Tuesday afternoon that Wesson, their leading scorer and rebounder from last season, has withdrawn his name from consideration for the draft and will return to college. Following a standout sophomore season, Wesson opted to take advantage of the rule allowing underclassmen to declare for the draft and work out for teams while getting feedback on their draft stock.

After opting to do so, Wesson was invited to two workouts: Atlanta and Boston.

Although the 6-foot-9, 270-pound center averaged 14.6 points and 6.9 rebounds per game last season, he did not appear in any mock drafts. Before the season, he said on media day that he has a four-year plan for college that results in him being ready to make an immediate NBA impact upon arrival.

“I want to be going to the league and I want to be ready,” he said. “I don’t want to have to sit out a year and GMs are telling me that we’re going to work you out for 2-3 more years. I want to be able to go in there and say, ‘You can start,’ or, ‘You can do what you want to do.’

“I can’t give you a timeline for that. Like I tell everybody, I’m taking it a day at a time, trying to put good days in front of me. My body fat’s too high for my liking to go into the NBA right now too. I feel like there’s a lot of things I have to work on.”

A traditional back-to-the-basket big man, Wesson trimmed down, expanded his game as a sophomore and added a three-point shot to his arsenal after watching last year’s NBA draft and realizing nobody with his body type and skill set was being selected. The Westerville South product earned honorable mention all-Big Ten honors after being named to the all-freshman team the season prior.


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