For the second season in a row, the Ohio State men’s basketball team has lost a player before the season hit the halfway mark.
A year after point guard Anthony Crater left the team, the Buckeyes and head coach Thad Matta announced Tuesday morning that they will be without guard Walter Offutt, who has left the program to seek a transfer to another school.
Offutt will finish the quarter at Ohio State and has not indicated where he will transfer.
The Indianapolis Warren Central product played in 21 games last year as a true freshman, averaging 0.9 points and 4.9 minutes, before seeing time this season in OSU’s opening two games against James Madison and Alcorn State. His eight points against Alcorn State were a career high but he did not play in the team’s last two games against ranked North Carolina and California.
Offutt closes his Ohio State career with 29 points in 23 career games.
Though Offutt struggled to find playing time last year, he did become an emotional leader who was the middle man in the team’s pregame huddle near the end of the season. Coming into this year, the Buckeyes had expected him to play an increased role on the court as well.
“I think he’s got a pretty good feel right now for what he needs to do to help the team,” Matta said before the season. “He’s got a great understanding of what his role is going to be on this team – going in, making open shots, taking care of the basketball and being the best defender that he can be.”
After suffering a season-ending knee injury his senior year of high school, Offutt came to Ohio State as a three-star prospect and the No. 29 shooting guard in the country.
The Buckeyes will face Lipscomb tonight at 7 p.m. at Value City Arena.