LeBron James' 'open door' with the Ohio State Buckeyes

LeBron James' 'open door' with the Ohio State Buckeyes
July 12, 2014, 1:00 pm
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Vinnie Duber

LeBron James has always said he would have gone to Ohio State had he not foregone college for the NBA.

But he probably didn't mean he would have played football there.

Regardless, Urban Meyer is going to make it work if the newly returned King wants to ever hit the gridiron.

"He's got an open door," Meyer told cleveland.com's Doug Lesmerises. "If he wants to catch a pass, we can probably figure that out, too."

The Ohio State head coach was probably joking about that last part — though fans have always wondered if LeBron would make a good tight end — but the first half of that quote nicely sums up Lesmerises' interesting look at King James' enduring fandom and relationship with the Buckeyes. Meyer and head basketball coach Thad Matta have welcomed LeBron into their locker rooms and onto their sidelines in recent seasons — even after he became public enemy No. 1 when he left Cleveland in 2010. LeBron was on hand at Ohio Stadium for last year's Ohio State football game against Wisconsin, and he to this day has a locker in the Buckeyes' basketball locker room.

[MORE BIG TEN: It's Badgers' Sam Dekker vs. LeBron at Vegas camp]

"I got to meet him several times and he's been very generous with his time and he came to a game and spent time with our team, and on several occasions, he talked about his appreciation for all the people that helped him along his journey growing up in Northeast Ohio and Akron," Meyer said. "So I don't want to say I'm not surprised, but he's a great person that has a lot of respect for his home state."

"I just think the things he has said about our program in the time that he's been gone (in Miami), it does show you that he had a lot of loyalty to Ohio State and to Ohio," Matta said. "I'm excited about the news. I was jacked up when I heard it."

That news is obviously LeBron's return to the Cavaliers, something that set the basketball world and beyond on fire Friday. Meyer took to Twitter to welcome back Ohio's native son.

Everyone's happy to have LeBron back in the Buckeye State. Or maybe Meyer's just trying to recruit a guy who never used his NCAA eligibility.