Ohio State back in the game for Versailles’ Justin Ahrens?


Ohio State back in the game for Versailles’ Justin Ahrens?

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Versailles junior and OSU commit Justin Ahrens scored 26 points in a 61-56 defeat of Tri-Village during Day 4 of the Premier Health Flyin’ to the Hoop at Trent Arena in Kettering on Monday, Jan. 16, 2017. MARC PENDLETON / STAFF

Versailles basketball star Justin Ahrens is one of the three verbal commitments Ohio State lost since the end of last season. 

Could he still end up playing for the Buckeyes? 

The four-star senior tweeted Monday night he has received a scholarship offer from new OSU coach Chris Holtmann. 

Ahrens is the No. 6-ranked player in the state of Ohio and the second-highest-rated player who is not verbally committed (trailing Cleveland Holy Name point guard Dwayne Cohill). 

The 6-5 Tigers standout, who was the MAC Player of the Year last season, has more than a dozen offers, including one from Missouri that also came Monday and one last week from Xavier. 

After Ohio State parted ways with long-time coach Thad Matta last month, Ahrens announced he was re-opening his recruitment but would still consider the Buckeyes. That same day he also shared that he had received an offer from first-year Dayton coach Anthony Grant. 

News of Holtmann’s offering Ahrens news comes the same day Pickerington North forward Jerome Hunter, a top target of the Buckeyes and the No. 2-ranked player in Ohio, verbally committed to Indiana. 

The other two former Ohio State commits for 2018, Dane Goodwin of Upper Arlington and Darius Bazley of Princeton, have announced plans to attend Notre Dame and Syracuse, respectively. 

Bazley is the state’s top prospect while Goodwin is No. 5. 

Ahrens’ brother Kyle is a junior at Michigan State. 

Ohio State has one verbal commit for 2018 (four-star guard Torrence Watson of St. Louis), but guard remains a big area of need for the Buckeyes. 

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