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Ohio State's E.J. Liddell Announces NBA Draft Decision

E.J. Liddell of Ohio State drives to the hoop.

WEST LAFAYETTE, INDIANA - MARCH 19: E.J. Liddell #32 of the Ohio State Buckeyes goes up with the ball in the first half against the Oral Roberts Golden Eagles in the first round game of the 2021 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament at Mackey Arena on March 19, 2021 in West Lafayette, Indiana. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

E.J. Liddell was a key contributor in Ohio State's strong season, which came to a premature end with the team's first-round upset loss to Oral Roberts. Unfortunately, he found himself at the wrong side of some horrid online harassment after the loss. Luckily, it doesn't look like that has eroded his love for the program.

Liddell had a strong season for the Buckeyes, averaging 16.2 points and 6.7 rebounds per game. In 39 minutes against Oral Roberts, he had 23 points, 14 rebounds, and five assists, but missed some big free throws down the stretch.

Even so, the Buckeyes would not have been in position to be a No. 2 seed this year without the star forward. Today, he announced that he'll test the NBA Draft waters.

"I feel so fortunate for what I've experience in my two seasons as a Buckeye and what we've accomplished together," he wrote in a statement posted to Twitter. "The success I've had wouldn't have been possible without the support of my teammates, coaches and family who have supported me along this amazing journey. Choosing to play for Coach Holtmann and The Ohio State University has been one of the best decisions I've made in my life, and I thank God for every opportunity given to me."

"After spending time consulting with my family and coaches I have decided I will be entering my name into the 2021 NBA Draft while maintaining my college eligibility," he continued. "Reaching the NBA has always been a dream of mine ever since I started playing basketball with my first YMCA team. Timing is everything, trust I won't rush." Players have until April 26 to submit their names into the 2021 NBA Draft pool. If they don't sign an agent, they can pull themselves out by June 15, and may receive evaluations in between. If E.J. Liddell returns, it will be a nice lift for Holtmann's team, but you can't blame him for testing the waters here. [

— E.J. Liddell (@EasyE2432) March 31, 2021

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