Ohio State Basketball: The Buckeyes' Mount Rushmore of Centers

Ohio State Basketball: The Buckeyes' Mount Rushmore of Centers

Mark Russell

Ohio State Basketball: The Buckeyes' Mount Rushmore of Centers


We’re going through each position group in Ohio State basketball to mine for the four best in Buckeye history. Let’s take a look at the big men in the middle – the centers.


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Ohio State Basketball Mount Rushmore Of:
Point Guards | Shooting Guards | Forwards

Ohio State Basketball: The Buckeyes’ Mount Rushmore of Centers

I’ve always admired the “bigs”. Maybe because I played guard and every guard secretly wants to post someone up and smash their opponant’s ego with a drop step dunk. Either way, if you’ve ever played, you know it’s a game changer to have a dominant big man on your side.

Here are the top four centers in Ohio State history as suggested by our staff at Buckeye Wire.

Greg Oden (2006-2007)

Greg Oden was a one and done at Ohio State, but boy was that one oh so fun. Oden wouldn’t even play a full season in Columbus due to a right wrist injury, but even with the limited body of work in the Scarlet and Grey, Oden belongs on this list.

Oden may be the biggest basketball recruit to ever commit to the Buckeyes. And with good reason. The seven footer was nearly unstoppable in the post on both sides of the ball.

Offensively, if you drew the unfortunate assignment of guarding the Buckeye center… it was in your best interest to just get out of the way or become another poster for Oden’s dorm room wall. Defensively, good luck trying to get a shot off inside of three feet. If he didn’t send it into the third row, he altered the shot enough to make it a really tough look.

Oden would finish his one year with 501 total points, good for over 15 per game. He also holds the record for blocks by a freshman with 105 on the season and is second all time with 306 rebounds as a freshman.

Oh yeah… he also brought Ohio State within one game of its first National Championship in basketball since 1960.

Herb Williams (1977-1981)

Herb Williams was a local product who stayed close to home when he picked Ohio State to continue his athletic career. His impact would be felt immediately.

As a freshman, Williams would average 16.7 points per game to go along with 11.4 rebounds per game. In an era when collegiate athletes stayed around all four years, Herb Williams was as consistent as they come.

Over the course of those four years, Williams would average 17.6 points and 9.7 rebounds per game. He would finish his career as the all-time leading scorer in OSU history (later surpassed by Dennis Hopson) and second in rebounding to only Jerry Lucas.

Perry Carter (1987-1991)

Perry Carter was not your typical collegiate center, but he played a heck of lot bigger than his 6’8″ frame would lead you to believe.

Carter was a four year starter at Ohio State and was the definition of consistency. Had Carter played in today’s game, he most likely would have been the ever so desirable “stretch four”. He could post you up or take you outside with a smooth jumper.

Carter would take advantage of bigger players who didn’t want to leave the rim and knock down 15 footers all night. He never shot under 54% from the field in all four years with the Bucks finishing with 1,613 points in his career. His 989 rebounds puts him third all-time behind Jerry Lucas and Herb Williams.

Ken Johnson (1997-2001)

Ken Johnson was the rim protector everyone desired. Got beat on defense? No worries… Johnson erased defensive mistakes with one swat of his hand.

Standing in at 6’11”, Ken Johnson could fire up a crowd with thunderous dunks, but defending the basket is where he made his living. In his junior year, Johnson averaged almost six blocks per game. SIX!

He is the all-time leader in that often undervalued stat with 444 total blocks in his four year career at OSU. On two different occasions he blocked 11 shots in a single game.

 

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