In a statement posted to his social media accounts, Ohio State graduate forward Seth Towns has announced that he will no longer be playing basketball for the Buckeyes.
“After a few setbacks this summer and some tough conversations with my coaches and medical personnel, it has become clear that my body is not in a position to endure a full Big Ten season,” Towns wrote. “As for my immediate future, I’ll be taking some time to figure out what my next chapter looks like. But, I am excited to find what is next for me and rest in my faith that I will be place-as I always have been-exactly where I am intended to be.”
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A Northland product, Towns spent four years at Harvard, where he earned his degree and played two seasons before knee injuries ended his sophomore season. Named the Ivy League’s player of the year that season after averaging 16.0 points, 5.7 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game, he spent the next two years rehabilitating the injury and transferred to Ohio State during the spring of 2020, where he continued his battle to return to the court at the school he always dreamed of attending as a child.
He saw action for the Buckeyes during the 2020-21 season and appeared in 25 games, averaging 3.8 points in 11.0 minutes per game but suffered a back injury that summer that ultimately kept him from participating during the 2021-22 season. He was set to return for a seventh season this year and take advantage of the NCAA’s extra year of eligibility afforded to all players who participated during the COVID-affected 2020-21 season.
Towns has made steady progress during the offseason but had not been cleared for a full return to action. He accompanied the Buckeyes on their foreign exhibition trip to the Bahamas and participated in practice the day prior to games against Egypt and Puerto Rico. Towns did not play in either game but went through extensive individual workouts with the coaching staff prior to both games.
“Seth is a really good, thoughtful person who struggled with this difficult decision,” Ohio State men’s basketball coach Chris Holtmann told The Dispatch. “He has been an outstanding teammate and obviously a very productive player for us when healthy. He absolutely loves being a Buckeye so I know how hard this has been for him. He’s been a pleasure to coach and I can’t wait to see what’s next for him.”
Off the court, Towns has been an outspoken advocate on issues of social justice. He has participated in protests and marches and used his platform to call attention to causes he has deemed important, such as kneeling for the national anthem in the aftermath of the killing of Casey Goodson by a Columbus police officer in 2020.
It’s not immediately clear if this affects Ohio State’s scholarship count, and it does not appear that Towns will remain around the 2022-23 Buckeyes.
“Praying for you my boy… i know this decision wasn’t easy but it was for the best for you and that’s all that matters….” former Ohio State center Jared Sullinger posted to Twitter.