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Ohio State basketball is ranked for the first time in nearly three years.

Ohio State: Buckeyes enter AP poll at No. 22; breaking down RB Demario McCall’s role

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Ohio State ranked No. 22 in new AP poll

For the first time this season, the Buckeyes are in the top 25. Ohio State checked in at No. 22 in the men’s basketball AP Top 25, which was released Monday.

It’s the first time Ohio State has been ranked since March 2, 2015, when the program was No. 23. And to make this ranking a little sweeter, the Buckeyes were one spot ahead of Michigan in the poll.

In addition to the AP ranking, the Buckeyes were listed as a No. 6 seed in ESPN’s latest Bracketology projection.

Chris Holtmann’s team has won 10 of its last 11 games and is 6-0 in the Big Ten. The Buckeyes are back on the court Wednesday at Northwestern.

Keita Bates-Diop named Big Ten Player of the Week

There was more good news for Ohio State’s basketball team Monday as Keita Bates-Diop was named the conference’s Player of the Week for the second straight time.

Bates-Diop leads the Big Ten in scoring with 20.3 points per game and is on the short list of Big Ten Player of the Year candidates. Bill Landis of broke down Bates-Diop’s chances to win the honor.

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What is Demario McCall’s role in 2018?

Ohio State will have no shortage of playmakers on its offense in 2018, and that includes Demario McCall. A key member of Ohio State’s 2016 recruiting class, McCall had his 2017 season thrown off track by a nagging groin injury.

So can the running back get things going in 2018? Land of 10’s Austin Ward figured out where he could fit in the offense next season.

With McCall’s ability and upside, he shouldn’t be ruled out in any competition for a meaningful role. He can line up in multiple positions, and he certainly has the kind of top-end speed and elusiveness that Ohio State loves to utilize in the power-spread system. His versatility should only help to get McCall involved. He certainly has the capability of being a dangerous weapon, but the Buckeyes don’t exactly have a shortage of those.

Ohio State looking strong in 2018 ‘way-too-early’ rankings

Most major college football outlets have released some type of “way-too-early” top 25 for the 2018 season. Ohio State is a common thread in each top five. The Buckeyes will be viewed as one of the top teams in the nation entering next year. Here’s a roundup of where the Buckeyes stand in those “too early” rankings.

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