Goodbye, Evan, And Thanks

Evan Turner of the Ohio State men’s basketball team announced today that he is skipping his senior year and entering the NBA draft.  I’m sorry to see him go, because I think Turner is a good guy who has been a diligent student and good representative of the University — as well as being an exceptionally talented basketball player.  Among other things, Turner has befriended a high school kid who lives in New Albany, for whom he has served as a mentor and role model.

Much as I would selfishly like to have Turner stay with the Buckeyes and lead them for another season, it is hard to argue with his decision.  He won a carload of awards and honors this year and is projected to be a top 3 choice in the NBA draft.  Under the NBA set up, if Turner is a top 3 choice he will make more than $7 million in his first two years in the league.  How can you expect a kid to turn down the chance to earn such a potentially life-changing amount of money, and run the risk of some horrible injury that could make that money vanish like a puff of smoke in a stiff breeze?

Besides, although Even Turner will be gone physically, he will live on in the memories of Buckeyes fans — especially for his game-ending shot to beat Michigan in this year’s Big Ten tournament.

Thanks, Evan — you will always be a Buckeye!