Ohio State Coach Jake Diebler Reveals Which Player Brings Him 'Peace & Comfort'

Ohio State Buckeyes head coach Jake Diebler is entering his first full season at the helm.
Mar 26, 2024; Columbus, OH, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes head coach Jake Diebler yells to his team during the first half of the NIT quarterfinals against the Georgia Bulldogs at Value City Arena.
Mar 26, 2024; Columbus, OH, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes head coach Jake Diebler yells to his team during the first half of the NIT quarterfinals against the Georgia Bulldogs at Value City Arena. / Adam Cairns/Columbus Dispatch / USA
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Ohio State Buckeyes head coach Jake Diebler is ushering in a new era of hoops in Columbus after ending last year on a high note following the mid-season firing of Chris Holtmann.

He's retooled the roster with some big-time talent from the transfer portal this offseason, but one familiar face might be more important to the Buckeyes' success -- and Diebler's sanity -- than anyone else on the team.

Mar 14, 2024; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes interim head coach Jake Diebler talks to guard Bruce Thornton (2) during the second half against the Iowa Hawkeyes at Target Center. Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 14, 2024; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes interim head coach Jake Diebler talks to guard Bruce Thornton (2) during the second half against the Iowa Hawkeyes at Target Center. Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports / Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports

When speaking to the media Monday, Diebler revealed that having guard Bruce Thornton for another year is keeping him at ease headed into the fall.

"First-year head coach, you get to have a guy like that on your team, that gives you peace and comfort," Diebler said, per Eleven Warriors. " ... He exemplifies what I want the program to be about."

Thornton, who led the team in points (15.7), assists (4.8) and steals (1.2) per game last season, is heading into his third season at Ohio State. He failed to score in double figures just five times and reached the 20-point mark in nine games.

He reached double figures in 11 straight games to end the season before the Buckeyes headed to the NIT.

It's saying something that Thornton will be the leader among a talented incoming transfer class that includes Meechie Johnson (South Carolina), Sean Stewart (Duke), Micah Parrish (San Diego State) and Aaron Bradshaw (Kentucky).

Ohio State ll will be tipping off its 2024-25 regular season in Las Vegas at T-Mobile Arena on Monday, Nov. 4 against the Texas Longhorns as part of the Hall of Fame Series.


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Zach Dimmitt

ZACH DIMMITT