And minutes after expressing those sentiments, preliminary plans to fulfill that wish were set in motion.
As Allen’s camp was wrapping up, Travis Ford emerged on the GIA floor to greet him. Ford then gave him a grand tour of the new facilities, including the multi-million dollar locker room, which is adorned with pictures of Allen, among other OSU greats.
“It was the first time I’ve been able to spend a good amount of time with him,” Ford said. “He’s really just a great guy. Energetic, really nice, talkative. And what a success story.”
After the tour, Allen stuck around for an extended conversation with Ford and his basketball support staff.
Within it, they mentioned a developing plan to honor the 10th anniversary of Allen’s 2004 Final Four team at one of this season's conference games, with the hope of holding it during the NBA’s All-Star weekend, so Allen can attend.
“I like to see it like this,” Allen said of the state of the OSU program. “And if the schedule opens up, I would love to come back and visit more. I’m glad to see that they are going to be top-five next year, so it’s all good for me. I get to brag in the locker room.”