One of the most interesting human interest stories of last weekend’s regional finals was that of Ohio State point guard Aaron Craft and his family.
Older brother Brandon, a member of the U.S. Army, was deployed to Afghanistan on Saturday for his second tour.
Brandon found out by way of their mother than the Buckeyes knocked off Syracuse, but that’s as much as the family knows at this point.
“All I know is he left Saturday,” Craft said. “He knows that we won (against Syracuse in the East Region final) because he posted on my Facebook with excitement and joy. After that, he has yet to tell us where he is, and I don’t think he is allowed (to tell), either.
“I am sure he is over there and safe.”
This isn’t the first time that Aaron has had to deal with this while playing, and he’ll have a good support group around him in the Crescent City this weekend.
In addition to his family, Ohio State head coach Thad Matta and the rest of the program have done their best to help Aaron when needed and keep his focus on what he can control.
“I think for Aaron, he knows that the No. 1 thing he can do is go out and play his best basketball,” said Matta. “That’s going to make his brother happy.”
Aaron’s got an important task to deal with on Saturday night as his match-up with Kansas’ Tyshawn Taylor will go a long way towards determining the winner.
He’s shown himself to be more than capable of focusing on the task at hand while between the lines.