May 1, 2012

Nichols picking up major offers

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With the early departure of sophomore superstar Jared Sullinger and the transfers of forward [DB]J.D. Weatherspoon[/db] and guard Jordan Sibert, Ohio State's [DB]Thad Matta[/db] finds himself hitting the recruiting trail harder than he would have liked or anticipated. With the recent addition of 2012 prospect Amedeo Della Valle, a sweet shooting combo guard from Findlay Prep in Henderson (Nev.), Matta and his staff seem to be turning their attention from 2012 to 2013.

One player that has recently received Ohio State interest is 6-foot-8 forward Austin Nichols of Briarcrest Christian High School in Eads (Tenn.) Nichols is an interesting prospect who likes to run the floor and play an up-tempo style of basketball, and style of play is one of a few factors that could determine where he ends up attending college.

"I'm looking for a few things," Nichols said. "The coaching staff, what style the team plays, how deep they are at my position and academic standards are all important to me. Distance from home is not a big deal."

And that is a good thing about distance as more schools start to offer Nichols. Ohio State, Duke and North Carolina have all recently jumped on board with offers to the power forward. Currently he is ranked as the No. 40 player overall in the nation in the most recent Rivals150.

According to Nichols, his game is one that is based on energy and a desire to get his teammates into the offense.

"I like to run the floor and keep a high motor. I like to rebound." He said. "I love getting my teammates involved. I try and model my game afterDirk Nowitzki or Pau Gasol."

Thad Matta's success at putting big men into the NBA has led to the Buckeyes being regularly in the discussion for the nation's elite talents, and with over 30 current scholarship offers, and Nichols is no exception.

"Ohio State has a great coaching staff," he said. "They produce great players and have great tradition. They are also a great academic school."

Nichols does not currently list a group of favorite schools, nor does he have a timeframe for his decision, but said that he hopes to get to visit Ohio State soon and that he will likely break down his offers to a list of 6 or 7 favorites sometime this summer.

Stay tuned to as for more on this prospect as it happens.


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