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LeBron James Congratulates Ohio State’s Jake Diebler on Promotion to Full-Time Head Coach

Consider Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James a fan of Ohio State’s recent personnel move.

On Monday, the 20-time NBA All-Star gave a special shout-out to Buckeyes men’s basketball coach Jake Diebler for his promotion from an interim head coaching role to the full-time position.

James, who entered the NBA draft directly after high school in 2003, has famously said that Ohio State would have been his college of choice had he gone down a different path. After news broke of Diebler’s promotion broke, James tipped his proverbial hat to Diebler on social media.

James reposted Ohio State’s graphic on his Instagram story and wrote “Congrats Diebs!!!!” in all caps.

It’s no secret that the Buckeyes were thick in the recruiting race for James’s older son, Bronny, who ultimately commited to USC instead. Ohio State also offered a scholarship to James’s younger son, Bryce, who took an unofficial visit to Ohio State last October. Bryce, a three-star shooting guard in the 2025 class, currently attends Sierra Canyon School in Chatsworth, Calif., and has yet to commit to a college.

Diebler reportedly was involved in both of James’s son’s recruitments and has been with the Buckeyes since 2019. When seventh-year coach Chris Holtmann was fired in February, Diebler took over as head coach on an interim basis and led the Buckeyes to a 6—2 record to close the season, including key victories over Purdue and Nebraska.

On Sunday, Ohio State officially named the 37-year-old Diebler as its full-time coach. Diebler signed a five-year deal through 2029 and will earn an annual base salary of $2.5 million.