The Ohio State men’s basketball roster shrunk by two on Monday with announcements from coach Thad Matta that sophomores Jordan Sibert and J.D. Weatherspoon each plan to transfer.
Neither of them had a role in the playing rotation as the Buckeyes made their NCAA Final Four run this season.
Weatherspoon played in 26 of OSU’s 38 games, while Sibert played in 24. Neither of them were a factor during the stretch run, though. Weatherspoon only played in six of OSU’s last 17 games, while Sibert only appeared in four of the team’s last 18 games.
The Columbus Dispatch reported a week ago that Sibert could pursue a transfer to Dayton, where former OSU assistant Archie Miller is the head coach. Weatherspoon initially said he would stay put at his hometown university. But transfer talk picked up for him in recent days, culminating in his announcement on Twitter today that he would be leaving. He picked OSU after originally verbaling to Xavier. Perhaps XU will be a possible destination for him now.
These two departures leave Matta with only nine scholarship players for the upcoming season. All-American Jared Sullinger announced he was leaving for the NBA on April 4. OSU has no high school prospects or transfers currently committed to join the team this summer.
Matta and his staff could still try and add a junior college transfer or one or more high school players in the spring signing period. They are awaiting word from Georgia big man Tony Parker, although most experts believe Parker could opt to sign with Georgia over OSU, Duke, UCLA, Kansas and other schools.
On Friday, we reported that OSU could host Henderson (Nev.) Findlay Prep guard Amedeo Della-Valle for a visit this upcoming weekend. Click here for that report.
They have one verbal for 2013 in Toledo St. John’s 6-8 wing Marc Loving.
Below are the releases from OSU on the Sibert and Weatherspoon transfers.
Jordan Sibert, a 6-4, 180-pound guard from Cincinnati, Ohio, has been released from his Ohio State men's basketball scholarship and will seek a transfer to another institution, Thad Matta, head coach of the Buckeyes, announced Monday.
Sibert, a graduate of Cincinnati Princeton High School, appeared in 49 games during his Ohio State career. He contributed 2.5 points and 1.4 rebounds in just under 10 minutes a game.
"My two years as an Ohio State Buckeye were great," Sibert said. "Playing in the Final Four this year was a dream come true.
"I've decided to transfer after discussing my future goals with family and my coaches," Sibert said. "I would like to find a school where I can make an impact on the court. I will miss my teammates, my coaches and the fans. I will always be a Buckeye."
Matta understands Sibert's goal to make a significant contribution elsewhere.
"Jordan has worked to improve since he became a Buckeye two years ago," Matta said. "He has represented our program well and we wish him the best."
Ohio State has won two Big Ten regular-season championships, a Big Ten tournament title (2011), advanced to a pair of NCAA tournaments, including the 2012 Final Four, and won a combined 65 games with Sibert on the roster. The Buckeyes finished the 2012 season with a 31-8 record and were 34-3 in 2012.
J.D. Weatherspoon, a sophomore forward on the Ohio State men's basketball team, has been granted a release from his scholarship and will seek to transfer to another school, Thad Matta, head coach of the Buckeyes, announced Monday.
Weatherspoon has not determined where he will transfer.
Over the last two seasons, Weatherspoon (6-6, 215) appeared in 35 games for the Buckeyes. He averaged 2.7 points and one rebound a game. He made 59 percent of his shots (37-63) and averaged about six minutes per game of court time.
Weatherspoon played high school basketball at Northland HS in Columbus.
"Coach Matta and my teammates have been great to me at Ohio State," Weatherspoon said. "Our fans and the Columbus community have supported me while in high school and at Ohio State. After discussing my future with my family and my coaches, we determined transferring to another school would be the best opportunity for me. My family and I will begin that process immediately."
Matta said he supports Weatherspoon's decision.
"J.D. has done everything we've asked," Matta said. "I can relate to a young man's desire to play. I was in his shoes during my collegiate career. His teammates and our staff appreciate the hard work J.D. has put in to make our team better. We wish him nothing but the best."
Ohio State has won two Big Ten regular-season championships, a Big Ten tournament title (2011), advanced to a pair of NCAA tournaments, including the 2012 Final Four, and won a combined 65 games with Weatherspoon on the roster. The Buckeyes finished the 2012 season with a 31-8 record and was 34-3 in 2012.