Della Valle Turning Pro, Heading Home to Europe
By Tony Gerdeman
COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ohio State sophomore guard Amedeo Della Valle is leaving OSU to play professional basketball in Europe, per a statement he released via Twitter on Saturday. Ohio State has since confirmed the news.
Della Valle's statement: "I wouldn't trade this experience with anything else, B1G Champions, the run to the Elite 8, the 12-0 year, man was that special. First of all mom, dad thank you for being on my side. I would like to thank not only my teammates but also the coaching staff that really helped me improve, you know without all the hard work I wouldn't have been able to win the MVP in Europe and compete in the B1G. To my friends thank you, you guys made it special for me and will always have you for the rest of my life. I want to thank the best fans in the land. It is now time for me to begin new experiences as I decided to head back to Europe to continue to play Pro basketball."
Amedeo Della Valle
Photo by Jim Davidson
Della Valle averaged 4.0 points per game this season for the Buckeyes, but was coming off of a summer where he led Team Italy to the Under 20 Euro Championship, earning MVP honors in the process.
"Amedeo is passionate about the game of basketball and wants to return to Europe to pursue a professional career," Buckeye head coach Thad Matta said in a statement. "We appreciate all the work he put in to make our team better over the last two years. We wish him well."
The success that Della Valle had in Europe was an obvious draw for him, and being back closer to home may have been the clincher.
Della Valle will finish his Ohio State career having played in 48 games, averaging 3.6 points per game for his career.
Ohio State is still awaiting the "stay or go" decision of junior forward LaQuinton Ross, who is exploring his options.
If Ross returns, that will give the Buckeyes a total of seven returnees from this past season. There are currently four members of the 2014 recruiting class, which is rated in the top five by some services. Matta still has room for two more in the 2014 recruiting class, and they are hopeful to add another post player.
With the loss of Della Valle, they may also target another guard.
If Ross does end up leaving, then they will only be returning six players and will have room to add seven new players.
Returning Players (including Ross)
F - LaQuinton Ross (Sr)
F - Marc Loving (So)
G - Shannon Scott (Sr)
F - Sam Thompson (Sr)
G - Kam Williams (Fr)
C - Amir Williams (Sr)
C - Trey McDonald (Sr)
G - D'Angelo Russell
C - David Bell
F - Jae'sean Tate
F - Keita Bates-Diop
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