COLUMBUS, Ohio — The Ohio State basketball program owned the nation's longest streak of having at least one player selected in the NBA Draft snapped on Thursday night, as no Buckeyes were picked by an NBA team.
For the First Time in Eight Years, No Buckeyes Selected in NBA Draft
By Tony Gerdeman
The streak ended at seven, as draft hopefuls LaQuinton Ross and Aaron Craft saw their names go uncalled. While Craft was not expected to be drafted, there were some who thought that Ross could be taken towards the end of the second round.
Both players plan to pursue professional basketball careers, but they will now have to do it via free agency or the NBA Developmental League or overseas.
Ohio State's draft streak began in 2007 with Greg Oden, Mike Conley and Daequan Cook. Oden went #1 overall to the Portland Trailblazers, Conley parlayed a fantastic NCAA Tournament into the #4 pick overall to Memphis, and Cook went 21st overall to the Sixers, but was then traded to Miami.
In 2008 it was Kosta Koufos to Utah with the 23rd overall selection. Koufos now plays for Memphis, where he scored 6.4 points per game and pulled down 5.2 rebounds per game this past season.
The 2009 NBA Draft saw the third-consecutive Buckeye center taken in the first round, as the Dallas Mavericks selected B.J. Mullens with the 24th pick, and then immediately traded his rights to Oklahoma. Mullens scored 4.2 points per game for the Sixers this year.
Speaking of the Philadelphia 76ers, they selected Evan Turner with the second overall pick in 2010. They traded him to Indiana this past season, where he had a front row seat for the Pacers' epic meltdown.
The Ohio State streak of first rounders ended at four, but the overall draft streak continued as Portland selected Jon Diebler with the 51st overall pick in the 2011 NBA Draft. He is currently playing in the Turkish Basketball League and the Houston Rockets now own his draft rights thanks to a trade. He scored 12.8 points per game as a starter for Pinar Karsiyaka, and shot 46.9% from three-point range this season.
Ohio State got back into the first round in 2012 when Boston selected Jared Sullinger with the #21 pick. He played in 74 games this past season, starting 44 of them. He scored 13.3 points per game and averaged 8.1 rebounds per game.
The draft streak peaked at seven a year ago when San Antonio selected Deshaun Thomas with the 58th overall pick in the 2013 NBA Draft. He signed with JSF Nanterre in Paris and averaged 12.2 points per game, helping his team to a championship.
As for any 2015 NBA Draft prospects for the Buckeyes, both Sam Thompson and Shannon Scott are appearing in early mock drafts, and both should only help their stock as seniors in 2014-2015.
The University of Kentucky now owns the nation's longest NBA Draft streak, which is also at seven.
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