Cleveland Garfield Heights 2026 Five-Star Point Guard Marcus Johnson Commits To Ohio State 

By April 10, 2024 (2:50 pm)Basketball

Ohio State and head coach Jake Diebler secured a massive in-state commitment on Wednesday, garnering a pledge from Cleveland Garfield Heights 2026 five-star point guard Marcus Johnson (6-1, 175). This marks the first commitment of the Diebler era. 

Johnson, the cousin of Ohio State senior guard Meechie Johnson, is tabbed as the No. 1 player in Ohio in the 2026 class along with the nation’s 24th-best overall player and fourth-best point guard. He chose the Buckeyes over schools such as Alabama, Cincinnati and Seton Hall, a decision that his father, Sonny Johnson, said was made in large part due to his son’s strong relationship with the new Buckeyes’ leader.

“It’s easy to make a decision like this when a coach has been the one coming to your practices, coming to all your games, who has been the one communicating with you and built that relationship and now he becomes the head coach,” Sonny Johnson said. “One thing my son wanted was to always feel loved and wanted. You want to go where you’re loved and wanted and somebody has a plan for you, and we think coach Diebler is that guy.” 

Johnson is coming off a spectacular sophomore season with Garfield Heights, where he averaged 23.1 points per game and led the Bulldogs to a 25-2 record and appearance in the Division I regional finals. These efforts allowed the guard to win Division I Player of the Year and be named to the All-Ohio first team for the second consecutive season. 

Johnson and his family were originally offered by then-Chris Holtmann led Ohio State last May, making him the Buckeyes first scholarship offer for the class of 2026. He took multiple visits to Ohio State since then and also attended many games towards the end of the 2023 season when Diebler was tasked with being the program’s interim leader. 

Now, with Johnson officially pledged to Ohio State, he hopes to bring the Buckeyes back to Big Ten and national prominence, something his father said is a significant motivating factor for him heading into his future career with the Scarlet and Gray.

“There can be nothing more pleasurable than winning and being great in your state,” Sonny Johnson said.

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