Deshaun Thomas to Enter the NBA Draft

By Kyle Rowland on April 5, 2013 at 2:12p
Deshaun Thoma declarted for the NBA draft today.

One year after spurning the NBA, Ohio State forward Deshaun Thomas figures his time has arrived. The 6-foot-7 junior who can seemingly make a basket from anywhere on the court with multiple people in his face announced his decision on Friday.

Thomas, the Big Ten’s leading scorer (19.8 ppg) this past season, is projected as a late first- or early second-round draft pick. He averaged more than 22 points in the Buckeyes’ NCAA Tournament run that concluded Saturday with a loss to Wichita State in the Elite Eight.

He was honored as a first-team All-Big Ten performer and third-team All-American.

"My three years at Ohio State have been the best years of my life,” Thomas said. “I have grown tremendously as an individual and as a basketball player. I intend to return to finish my degree, but I believe that now is the best opportunity to pursue my dream and begin my career as a professional basketball player. I will always be a Buckeye and am blessed to be a part of the Ohio State University family."

One possible impact on Thomas’ decision was his 1-year-old son, Deshaun Jr. He was born last season, during Ohio State’s Sweet 16 win over Cincinnati. Thomas scored 24 points that night. For an encore, Thomas scored 24 points again in an NCAA Tournament game, this time against Iona, on Deshaun Jr.’s first birthday.

Thomas came to Ohio State as a ballyhooed high school recruit from the talent-rich state of Indiana. He scored 3,018 points during an historic high school career that left him third all-time in scoring in the Hoosier State.

Those high offensive numbers led to high expectations his freshman season. But during the Buckeyes’ 35-win season, Thomas only played 14 minutes a game and averaged 7.5 points. With a team full of veterans, a freshman that had no use for defense had trouble getting playing time.

But Thomas honed his craft on defense between his freshman and sophomore seasons and became an all-around player. During last season’s Final Four run, Thomas put up 19.2 points and 7.6 rebounds per game. In particular, he became a force on the offensive glass. Jared Sullinger’s presence down low contributed to Thomas’ numbers rising.

“To see Deshaun grow into the man he has become has been amazing,” said head coach Thad Matta. “His accomplishments on the floor speak for themselves but I am just as proud of him and what he has done off the floor. We recruited him offering the opportunity to grow as a person and player and that is exactly what happened. I know there is much more in store for him in the future and I am proud to have been able to coach him.”

Thomas scored 1,630 points in his career – 466 shy of Dennis Hopson’s school career record and ninth all-time – an average of 14.4 per game. He shot 47.9 percent from the field and 34.2 percent from three-point range. He was a part of a Final Four, Elite Eight and Sweet 16. Ohio State also won two Big Ten regular-season and tournament titles during his career.

Thomas is one of 25 players in Ohio State history to record 1,000 career points and 500 rebounds. His total of 733 points last season is third-most in Ohio State history.

Rookie contracts were a key negotiating point in the NBA’s last collective bargaining agreement. First-round picks get four-year contracts – two years guaranteed and club options for the final two. Second-round selections have a much harder road. Nothing is guaranteed. It’s a trip to the Summer League and hoping you make the final roster cuts – and get a multi-year contract.

Thomas plans to finish the 2013 Ohio State Spring Semester while splitting time between Columbus and Indianapolis preparing for the NBA Draft.


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BuckeyeVet's picture

Good luck & God bless! Thanks for the good times!

"Outside of a dog, a book is a man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read."          - Groucho Marx

"The recipient of Oyster's ONLY down vote".

Hovenaut's picture

No matter where or when DT lands when draft occurs, the NBA will have become a little bit better.

Good luck DT.

jthiel09's picture

Good luck DT, you'll always be welcome in Columbus as one of the great Buckeye Bball players of all time. 


TMargo's picture

Thank you DT for the growth and class you showed during your time here.  You embodied what a college experience is all about, learning, growth, maturation on and off the court.  Your son has a great father figure to lead him.  I am proud that you are and always will be a Buckeye. 
Good Luck at the next level.

jestertcf's picture

Good luck DT. Here's hoping you you are a cavalier next year.

~Because we couldn't go for three~

buckeyefanatic's picture

Not a cavs fan but such a misuse of the downvote that I upped you anyway.  #fatfingers

How many batteries does it take to beat Michigan football?   1AA
Want to beat Michigan? There's an App for that.

osu07asu10's picture

Good luck Tank!

It's been awesome to see his evolution from a me first rapid fire player who never met a shot he didn't like...

To a team leader on and off the court, a guy who learned to play some real D and help shape the program while he was here and for years to come.

Now, go tear up the NBA!

CJDPHoS Board of Directors // Best friends with Homey Hache

The 0 is silent.

buckeyechad's picture

Smart move. Biggest things holding his stock down are mainly athleticism/physical things that aren't able to be fixed with more time in college. Hope he has a great career, we need more big time players in the NBA.

jeremytwoface's picture

Good luck!
He will make an excellent player in the league.

And when we win the game, we'll buy a keg of boooooooooze!! And we'll drink to old Ohio 'till we wobble in our shoes.

JozyMozy's picture

Love u, big guy.

dubjayfootball90's picture

Damnit. I wanted him to stay, for selfish reason obviously, but it is time.
Good luck, Mr. Thomas. I know you will make Buckeye Nation proud, and I am very happy to hear that he will be coming back to finish his degree. The degree should the the focal point of any player that comes through the school, and I am glad that he understands the importance of schooling and getting that degree.
Kick some ass at the next level, Sir! Love watching you play in S&G, and I am sure I will love watching you play in whatever colors you don in the future. Again, Good luck, and thanks for a great three years!

You can feed a bobcat all the chili it wants. That don't mean it's going to crap out diamonds.

9Route's picture

Best of luck to DT --- here's to a successful, long, healthy career in the NBA!
Go get 'em, Tank!

I'm just happy to be here

741's picture

Great Buckeye! Wishing him all the best in the NBA and beyond. I really like his stated intent to return to finish his degree.

Kalamazoo Steve's picture

And folks thought we couldn't score this year.  Some guys will really need to step up next season.  Thank God for Q.

Kevbo714's picture

Best of luck, good sir!  I enjoyed following your career and thank you for your contributions to The Ohio State University.

Tom Crean listens to Nickelback...

HolgateBuckeye's picture

Good Luck DT! 
It's Q's time to step up now.

EazyElmo's picture

Good luck to you, DT. If you pursue a job in the NBA half as hard as you go after an offensive rebound you will be making millions. It's out there, go get.

Dougger's picture

Love this guy - once a buckeye!!..
Best of luck and Godspeed, go get you some first round $ for Deshaun junior!

I like football

BuckeyeUro's picture

Good luck to DT and his family. We enjoyed having him as a player and a student. Wish him long productive NBA career.

buckeyestu's picture

good luck dt, thank you for playing for the good guys.

BullCityBuckeye's picture

Best of luck to you, Deshaun.  Thank you for making OSU proud the last three years!

TheShookster's picture

Evan Turner will always be my favorite OSU baller, but DT gave him a run for his money. Thanks for all the times that I laughed when your crazy shots somehow found the bottom of the net, and thanks for giving it everything you had even when the shots weren't falling.
Please get drafted by the Pacers! I need a reason to make the 5 mile drive to Bankers Life Fieldhouse more often. (Haven't looked at a mock draft or anything so I have no idea how realistic this might be)

He ain't even stretch doe!!

703Buckeye's picture

Finishing his degree. That's what I like to hear, an athlete who values his education!

"Attack the Strong, Trample the Weak, Hurdle the Dead!"
-Former OSU S&C Coach Lichter

Jangs78's picture

Held out a sliver of hope that he would stick around for his senior year and guide us to a championship but there is no doubt he is making the best decision for himself.  Best of luck DT, a true Buckeye.  Coming back and getting that diploma will make your family even prouder!

Scott's picture

All the best, young Buck.

Class of 2008

Michael Citro's picture

Not unexpected, but :(


Best of luck to Tank.

Mattymatt's picture

I already miss him. Good luck in the future good sir.

Squirrel Master's picture

Even if the NBA is stupid enough to not draft him in the first round, I wouldn't be too concerned with him in the summer leagues. He is a straight up shooter and those games are set up to promote players like him. I believe he can shine in the summer, how he fairs in the regular season will be interesting. I think he will stick in the NBA for a long time because of his scoring ability, but I think he might be a bench guy. Make one heck of a 6th man!

I saw a UFO told me to have a goodyear!

Matt F's picture

:( Sad face

Jack Fu's picture

Well, I am officially terrified of next year now.
But good for DT. Best of luck, hope he's a pro for years and years.

TatumRuled's picture

Thanks Deshaun! And, for the rest of your life, you'll never have to pay for a drink on High St!

"Hell, Woody didn't recruit me; he recruited my mother!" -Jack Tatum                       

gobucks96's picture

Gonna have another team to follow in the NBA, probably.... 

FitzBuck's picture

I hope he goes to a team that allows his scoring ability to thrive.  Good luck big guy thank you for everything.  

Fitzbuck | Toledo - Ohio's right armpit | "A troll by any other name is still a troll".

AltaBuck's picture

You're all class DT. Thank you for being a Buckeye.

I am Groot - Groot

lamplighter's picture

vaya con dios and best of luck

CentralFloridaBuckeye's picture

I must say I'm bummed and hoped he would come back.  He's a great player and will do big things in the NBA.  Thanks for all of the things you did for Buckeye Nation Deshaun!  We luv ya and wish you the best of luck!!
Go Bucks!

raki's picture

Goof luck and have a great career in NBA.

BucksfanXC's picture

DT - good luck, love ya buddy, smart move, awesome that you are coming back to get your degree, you will always be a Buckeye
To those freaking out about next year - Ross will step up, Loving will bring in some points, Matta always pulls in a commit late after these early departures give him the whole picture and some schollie room, and we still have Craft

“Any time you give a man something he doesn't earn, you cheapen him. Our kids earn what they get, and that includes respect.”  - Woody

mockjocks's picture

Best of luck, DT. Thanks for the 3 years, you were a top tier buckeye over the last 10 yrs. Work hard, and prove the doubters wrong at the next level.

At 8pm on September 7th, the world stops...

Maestro's picture

Best of luck Deshaun, the delusional side of me hoped he would return.

vacuuming sucks

clarkti's picture

Good luck DT, I am big Cavaliers fan I hope you get a chance to play for the Cavs and Kyrie, Uncle Drew.

Jonnferrell's picture

Another Buckeye to the NBA!  God Bless you and your family, Deshaun!

"I miss Brady Hoke."

nickma71's picture

I think he can have a nice career. He has matured quite a bit during his time here, and has game has improved. However, in the NBA, there is always room for dudes that can score 30 whenever they feel like it. And he his one of them. The rules are set up in that league for players just like him.

Poison nuts's picture

Damn, every time I step away from this site, I miss something big....Deshaun has become one of my all time favorite Buckeyes in any sport, & my motives for wanting him to come back are selfish indeed. Good Luck Deshaun, I'll be rooting for you for the rest of your career in basketball & beyond! Go get em, Go Bucks!

"Do not pass me, just slow down - I can move right through you" Superchunk - Precision Auto.

chimes3899's picture

Best of luck to DT. Going to miss yelling for him at the games. Hopefully he will get drafted by the celtics or sixers so I can keep following him, sully and turner easily. Great ball player and an even better person!

DefendOhio's picture

I didn't expect him to stay here for 3 years. We got lucky for having him here that long. I wish him the best of luck. Hopefully someday he can return to OSU and finish his degree. Until then, go chase your dream!

Colorado Buckeye's picture

Would have loved to see him stay so that same group could make another run at the championship next year... but that is just me being selfish :) Those young Bucks are gonna need to step up to fill the void. Good Luck DT!

Pain heals. Chicks dig scars. Glory lasts forever!

Geraffi's picture

Good luck, Tank. One of my favorite all time basketball Buckeyes. 

penult's picture

Best luck, Tank. It was fun watching you in S&G.

DefendOhio's picture

Thomas hasn't hired an agent YET, so the door isn't fully closed. Though I expect him to stick with his decision. 

Doc's picture

Good luck Deshaun. Thanks for being a Buckeye.

CJDPHoS Member

The Official DDS of 11W

ShowThemOhiosHere's picture

Deshaun returning certainly would've helped OSU next year, but it wouldn't have helped his own draft stock.  He made a smart decision to go pro now - strike the iron while it's hot, so to say.  Plus, he's got a kid to think about.  It's been fun watching him grow over 3 seasons, from the guy who never met a shot he didn't like to a great all-around player.  Here's to a great NBA career!

Class of 2010.

osubuckeye4life's picture

Tanks for the memories Deshaun! One of the best buckeye basketball players I've ever seen.
Best of luck at the next level!