Wright State transfer guard Tanner Holden commits to Ohio State

Adam Jardy
The Columbus Dispatch
Wright State guard Tanner Holden (2) celebrates after a 3-pointer during the first half of an NCAA men's basketball game, Tuesday, Nov. 16, 2021 at Mackey Arena in West Lafayette.

Ohio State has landed its first commitment from the transfer portal.

Tanner Holden, a high-scoring guard from Wright State, has announced that he will play for the Buckeyes after announcing he would enter the transfer portal March 29. His addition helps Ohio State start to address a position of need as part of an offseason that promises significant changes to the roster and coaching staff.

A 6-6, 185-pound guard from Wheelersburg, Ohio, Holden burst onto the national scene by pouring in 37 points to help the Raiders defeat Bryant in a First Four NCAA Tournament game at Dayton’s UD Arena on March 16. It marked the first tournament win in program history and capped a season that saw him average 20.1 points, 7.1 rebounds and 2.6 assists while shooting 49.7% from the floor and 34.1% from 3-point range.

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As a junior, Holden was named to the Lou Henson All-America team, which recognizes the top mid-major players in the country. Holden increased his scoring average during each of his three seasons with the Raiders, from 11.8 as a freshman in 2019-20 to 15.8 as a sophomore and now 20.1 last season.

According to, Holden also finished the season 19th nationally in fouls drawn per 40 minutes at 6.5, the same number as E.J. Liddell, who led Ohio State.

He is expected to slot into an important role in an Ohio State backcourt that lost starter Jamari Wheeler (out of eligibility) and is likely to lose Malaki Branham, who has declared for the NBA draft and is projected as a first-round pick after one season with the program. He is rated as the No. 4 transfer in the nation according to and a four-star prospect and the No. 45 overall transfer nationally by

Ohio State is also adding former Miami coach Jack Owens, who was a nine-year assistant coach at Purdue before spending the last five seasons with the RedHawks, to its coaching staff

Holden was an unranked prospect out of high school in the composite database. Ohio University was also known to have offered.

A dual-sport athlete at Wheelersburg High School, Holden told the Dayton Daily News in 2020 that he had been recruited by Ohio State, Michigan and other schools to play football after he was named Ohio’s co-offensive player of the year for Division V as a junior. His father, Rodney, played basketball at Marshall University and was named to the school’s hall of fame. His sister, Sydney, scored 1,272 points in four seasons at Division II school Rio Grande.

It’s not clear how many players the Buckeyes will ultimately add via the transfer portal, but they are likely to add one or two more as their roster continues to solidify before the 2022-23 season.


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