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June 28, 2011

COLUMBUS, Ohio Jon Diebler’s name was called with the 51st overall pick in the second round of the 2011 National Basketball Association Draft Thursday at the Prudential Center in Newark, N.J. Diebler is the seventh Buckeye coached by Thad Matta, head coach at Ohio State, selected in the annual professional draft.

As a senior, Diebler averaged 12.6 points a game as a senior to go with 2.6 rebounds a game. He recorded 36 steals, 88 assists and five blocks. He connected on 51 percent of his field goal attempts (145-286), 50 percent of his 3-point attempts (114-227) and on 81 percent from the foul line (64-79).

Diebler said many contributed to his making it to the NBA.

“I’ve been blessed to be given this opportunity,” Diebler said. “The process has been fun. This has been a dream of mine and I’ve enjoyed the ride. I feel great right now. This has been a result of many hours in the gym and lots of hard work. It’s another step and goal I’ve been trying to accomplish.

“I’ve been blessed with a healthy high school and college career,” Diebler said. “This is an exciting time for my brothers, my parents, my high school coaches, the Ohio State staff and all my former teammates.”

Matta said Diebler was dedicated to improving each year at Ohio State and those efforts led him to this achievement.

“I couldn’t be happier for Jon,” Matta said. “To see his growth from a freshman to senior has been amazing. Here is a kid who came to Ohio State with so many expectations. He struggled in the beginning but never quit. To see him at this point in his life, he deserves it all because he put in the extra work to reach this level.”

The six previous Ohio State student-athletes selected in the draft since Matta took over the program (2005-present) were all taken in the draft’s first round.

Evan Turner was selected in the opening round by the Philadelphia 76ers with the second pick in 2010.

Greg Oden, Mike Conley Jr., and Daequan Cook, all freshmen from Ohio State’s 2007 NCAA runner-up squad, were taken in the opening round of the 2007 NBA Draft. Freshmen centers Kosta Koufos (2008) and B.J. Mullens (2009) also were first round selections.

Portland, with the first overall pick in 2007, selected Oden. He was the first Buckeye selected with the opening pick. Conley went to the Memphis Grizzlies with the No. 4 pick and Cook was selected by Philadelphia with the 21st pick of the opening round. Koufos was taken by the Utah Jazz with the 23rd pick in 2008 while Mullens went originally to the Dallas Mavericks with the 24th pick in 2009. He was then traded to the Oklahoma Thunder on draft night.

Since 1947, 48 Ohio State basketball players have been drafted by NBA teams, including 22 first round selections.

Diebler joins Turner, Mullens, Koufos, Oden, Conley, Cook and Michael Redd as former Buckeyes currently active in the NBA. Redd earned a gold medal for the United States on the men’s senior national team in the 2008 Beijing Olympics. He also was elected to the Ohio State Athletics Hall of Fame and was inducted in 2009.

Ohio State made its 23rd appearance in the NCAA tournament last season. The Buckeyes finished first with a 16-2 record in Big Ten regular-season play and advanced to win the title game of the conference tournament. With 34 overall victories (34-3), the seventh-consecutive season with 20 or more wins, Matta recorded his 11th-consecutive year with 20-plus wins as a collegiate head coach.

Noting Jon Diebler

3–Consecutive years Jon Diebler led the team in 3-point shooting pct, an Ohio State record
9–Consecutive 3s made by Jon Diebler vs. Florida Gulf Coast (12/15/10) and at Penn State (3/1/11)
10–Made 3-pointers by Jon Diebler at Penn State (3/1/11), an Ohio State, single game, and Big Ten record
41.2–Career 3-point shooting pct for Jon Diebler, 2nd best in Ohio State history.
50.2–Season 3-point shooting pct (114-227) for Jon Diebler, an Ohio State single season record
114–Season made 3-pointers for Jon Diebler, 2nd most in Ohio State history (116, Diebler, 2010) and 3rd season all-time with 100 or more makes
227–Attempted 3-pointers by Jon Diebler, No. 5, season, in Ohio State history. He has 3 of Top 5 totals.
374–Career made 3-pointers for Jon Diebler, the Ohio State and Big Ten all-time record
900–Career attempted 3-pointers by Jon Diebler, No. 1 all-time