Ohio State has the top 2022 recruiting class in the country right now — on the hardwood, not the gridiron. The class has three members and they are all guards. Bruce Thornton looks like the point guard of the future in Columbus, Roddy Gayle Jr. is a lethal combo guard with high upside, and Bowen Hardman has the talent to be one of the best shooters in the Chris Holtmann era. Nonetheless, the Buckeyes need a big man to join that group.
With that in mind, Holtmann and his staff have issued dozens of offers to the top big men in the country. One player in particular that Buckeye fans should keep an eye on is Kyle Filipowski out of Wilbraham & Monsoon Academy in Wilbraham, Massachusetts. Filipowski holds offers from universities all over the country and that’s after only playing five games as a junior. While those five games didn’t matter much in the grand scheme of things they did help a bit and Filipowski thinks this AAU season could help him even more
“I mean I don’t really think those five games changed my recruitment much,” he told Buckeye Scoop. “I think most of my recruitment has been based on last high school season, especially since we didn’t have AAU last year. I think it will start picking up a little more once this AAU season starts coming around and the live period comes back.”
As for the AAU season, Filipowski talked about he will be playing for one of the better teams in the country with a loaded roster. And one member of that talented team is the aforementioned Ohio State commit Roddy Gayle Jr. who is working to bring the near 7-footer to Columbus with him.
“Me and Roddy are real good friends actually,” Filipowski said. “We have been playing AAU together and we’ve been practicing a lot together, been playing on the same team in scrimmages, and we have a good connection on and off the court. He’s been pushing me a little bit trying to go commit to the big O as well and have a future there. I’m just excited to see what this spring brings between us.”
Gayle Jr. is not the only person trying to get Fillipowksi to Columbus. Ohio State assistant coach Jake Diebler is forming quite the bond with the big man. Nonetheless, his recruitment is a whole staff effort.
“Coach Diebler is recruiting me the most from Ohio State right now. I have also spoken to Coach [Ryan] Pedon a few times and then I also talk to Coach Holtmann occasionally as well,” he said. “Me and Coach Diebler we’ve continually been building our relationship. There’s been no point in time where we really haven’t been in contact, whether it’s texting or on Facetime once a week or getting on Zooms talking about positions, roles, academics, and things like that. I love Coach Diebler. We have been connecting, getting to know more of one another and really building the foundation of that family-like setting.”
When it comes to how the Ohio State staff views Filipowkski as a player and a prospect on the court there is a lot to like. His versatility is intriguing and he says the Buckeyes staff has a plan of how they would use it.
“They’ve made it clear to me that just because I may be 6’10″ and at points the tallest guy on the court doesn’t mean I will be the basic block-to-block big man, just playing on the block. They are going to take full advantage of all my capabilities. They want me to shoot the three, get the rebound and push the ball, but also take advantage of my mismatch situations.”
There are still visits to be taken and pitches to be made in this recruitment but the Buckeyes are in a good spot. Filipowski plans to be in Columbus June 11-13th for an official visit with Gayle Jr. and the other 2022 commitments. In the meantime, the two will keep playing together and Diebler will keep recruiting him hard as the Buckeyes look to add to their top-ranked class.