The #3, for now, Ohio State Buckeyes (15-1, 2-1) return to the friendlier confines of Value City Arena Saturday afternoon to play the #20 Iowa Hawkeyes (13-3, 2-1). Ohio State is coming off an exciting, roller coaster overtime loss at Michigan State 68-72, while on Thursday, Iowa demolished Northwestern 93-67.
Here’s their Profile
University of Iowa
The #20 Hawkeyes (13-3, 2-1) are in their 4th year under Fran McCaffrey, are off to a very good start this year, and have shown significant improvement each year under McCaffrey. Iowa’s performance has improved form 11-20, (McCaffrey’s 1st year) to seasons of 18-17 and 25-13 and an NIT bid last year.
Coach McCaffrey runs the traditional 2G/1C/2F lineup with Roy Devyn Marble (6’6”) and Mike Gesell (6’1”) at the guard positions, Adam Woodbury (7’1”) at center, Aaron White (6’9”) and Melsahn Basabe (6’7”) at the forward spots. Marble (16.0) and White (13.4) lead the team in scoring, while White and Basabe lead the team in rebounding, each with 6.6 per game.
Note: Player and team stats courtesy of statsheet.com
Here are the University of Iowa Hawkeyes:
Ohio State University Buckeyes
The #3 Buckeyes (15-1, 2-1) lost a heartbreaking ebb and flow overtime game at Michigan State on Tuesday. The game was notable for its ebbs (MSU 11-2 run to end 1st half) and flows (OSU 20-3 run to end regulation). Astoundingly enough, the Buckeyes outrebounded the Spartans 42-28. Equally astounding, OSU was an abysmal 22% (4-18) from the perimeter, while MSU made an unbelievable 58% (11-19) of their 3-point shots.
And, here are your Ohio State Buckeyes:
|32||L. Smith Jr.||6’4″||G||12.4||48.9||37.3||76.8||5.1||1.6||1.4|
|33||A. Della Valle||6’5″||G||5.2||38.0||36.7||61.1||2.1||0.4||0.6|
Iowa brings some good height, rebounding and scoring to this game. This game will be a multi-part challenge for the Buckeyes. The Ohio State frontcourt needs to neutralize the Iowa front line, so I’d expect to see McDonald and Thompson to get substantial playing time. Of course, Thad could go with his “small” lineup (Craft/Scott/Smith/Ross/Thompson) to try to run Iowa to exhaustion. This is a possibility, only if LaQuinton has one of his usual games, not his “MSU” game.
The other challenge as I see it is to play solid perimeter defense. I watched a bit of the Iowa-Northwestern game Thursday, and Iowa had no trouble hitting their open 3-point shots at a 57% clip (8-14). Ohio State’s defense is a good bit better than Northwestern’s, but an open look is an open look.
Interestingly, Iowa gets to the foul line a lot more than Ohio State (30 attempts per game vs 24 per game) and is a bit better foul shooting team. Fortunately, the “opponents” numbers are vastly different, with Iowa opponents are shooting 24 foul shots per game while OSU opponents only get to the line 15 times per game. This foul call/shooting aspect should be an interesting subplot to the game.
|PPG O||PPG D||RPG||APG||TPG||Pos/G||PPP||A/T|
The game is scheduled for this Sunday, tipping off at 1:30 PM EST in Value City Arena. Television coverage will be provided by CBS, check your local listings. Live chat coverage will be provided by tBBC, check back here. Please join us for our live chat approximately 30 minutes before tip-off.