Thad Matta baiting recruits with LeBron...

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Thad Matta baiting recruits with LeBron...

By Brian Windhorst |

LeBron James never played college basketball but he will have a permanent place in Ohio State's new locker room.

The Buckeyes have given James a locker and it will be used to display James' branded Nike gear the school uses to help in recruiting, coach Thad Matta told reporters in Columbus on Tuesday. Ohio State started wearing James' signature uniforms and shoes in 2007. Matta made James an honorary member of the team at a ceremony in 2009.

"We always want to pay our respects to him for what he did for us in '07, in terms of we were the first LeBron school," Matta said. "And obviously we get tremendous product from him, and I know he's very proud of what he does for us."

The new locker room itself is named after Michael Redd, the former Ohio State star who gave $500,000 toward a $19 million renovation of the university's basketball facilities. But James, who decided when he was 16 that he'd forgo college and enter the NBA draft after high school, will occupy a spot next to the Buckeyes' current players.

James has frequently attended Ohio State football and basketball games over the years. Last year, James hosted Buckeyes football coach Urban Meyer and his family at a Heat game in Miami.

"He's very proud of what we've done and just in terms of his name and being from Ohio and the fact we wear his gear," Matta said. "That's important for us."

TarHeelRaven's picture
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I don't like this. Thad Matta

I don't like this. Thad Matta obviously thinks recruits will be drawn to Ohio State if they have anything tied to Lebron James. I obviously see where Thad Matta is coming from, but I don't think he needs Lebron James name to get interest from recruits. Ohio State has a storied athletic program and has gotten top level recruits in the past. I don't know for sure, but I assume they have top notch athletic facilities. Ohio State is a powerful brand name known across the country. I'd rather see Thad Matta sell the Buckeye brand, instead of clinging to a player that never attended the school.

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It's a better

It's a better idea than letting Drake do midnight madness and giving him a championship ring as a recruiting ploy.

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I don't understand what you

I don't understand what you don't like about it...? Any edge these colleges get they will use, I assume your a Tar Heel fan? U don't think using Michael Jordan's likeness has helped recruiting? Granted he played there, it's an ugly business...lebron has obviously invested a lot of time and money into the Ohio state program, I don't see the issue...

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Now all we need is Thad Matta

Now all we need is Thad Matta to recruit lebron back to Ohio...

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