Meechie Johnson will end up playing for Ohio State sooner than expected.
The 6-foot-2, 185-pound combo guard from Garfield Heights reclassified from the 2021 class to the 2020 class, he announced on Sunday. He'll enroll at the university later this year.
Johnson says he'll graduate early from high school and enroll at Ohio State in December. He had returned to Garfield Heights for his senior year, but he decided the opportunity to begin his collegiate career early as a Buckeye was too much to pass up.
The announcement on his own IG live. pic.twitter.com/TxiudaffPJ— Colin Hass-Hill (@chasshill) November 8, 2020
Johnson has been committed to Ohio State since Aug. 19, 2019, when out of nowhere he posted a video on social media declaring his intention to play college basketball for his home state's flagship school. The combo guard joined power forward Kalen Etzler as the Buckeyes' second commitment in the 2021 class.
However, instead of enrolling with Etzler and fellow commit Malaki Branham, he'll join Ohio State ahead of schedule and suit up this upcoming season once he gets onto campus.
"They're getting a winner," Johnson said. "Somebody who's going to play hard, bring it every day."
Johnson will take the scholarship once filled by Utah State graduate transfer Abel Porter. Last week, Porter announced his basketball career had suddenly ended before ever suiting up for the Buckeyes.
At Ohio State, Johnson will help provide depth at guard behind starters CJ Walker and Duane Washington Jr. He'll come off the bench with Bucknell transfer Jimmy Sotos, who gained immediate eligibility a few days ago, to provide a scoring punch.
Johnson was the No. 76 overall recruit and 14th-ranked point guard in the 2021 cycle. He was also the second-ranked Ohioan behind Branham, who'll join him in Columbus next year. A torn ACL in the latter half of his sophomore season threatened to half his progression, but once fully recovered a year later, he shined playing for the Indy Heat this summer which shot him back up the national rankings.
Due to NCAA rules passed stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic, Johnson will be able to play in the 2020-21 season while retaining his freshman year of eligibility.
This is a breaking news story that will be updated.