Chris Holtmann suspends player on his first week at Ohio State
Chris Holtmann was formally introduced as the next head coach at Ohio State three days ago. In his first week on the job he has already sent a message to the program and the fanbase.
On Thursday afternoon, Ohio State released a statement that redshirt freshman forward Derek Funderburk had been suspended indefinitely for, “failure to meet team expectations.” The press release did not include any specifics on the situation.
The 6-foot-9 Funderburk was rated as a four-star recruit, the No. 77 overall prospect in the Class of 2016 according to Rivals. Thad Matta elected to redshirt him this past season.
Holtmann made it clear in his first press conference. “This is a proud program that’s used to competing for championships, that’s used to competing in the NCAA tournament,” he said. “We’re gonna work diligently to make that happen.” This decision supports that statement. It should serve as a wake-up call to anyone on the roster and it should show fans that he is serious about building this program back into a contender immediately.
Holtmann was hired by Ohio State last Friday. He replaced Thad Matta, who served in that role for 13 seasons. Holtmann, 45, was the head coach at Butler the past three seasons, compiling a 70-31 (34-20 Big East) record with three trips to the NCAA Tournament.