Day 1 Big Ten Tourney Live Recaps

Written March 8th, 2012 by WVaBuckeye

10:15 PM – Make sure to stop back tomorrow for more live coverage from Indianapolis from WVaBuckeye and Gary Russell! A preview of tomorrow’s games will be up shortly to get you ready for all four excellent matchups.

Game 4 Final – #6 Purdue 78, #11 Nebraska 61

10:00 PM – Gary Russell here from Indy finishing out today’s action. The second half started off with a flurry but Purdue really flexed its muscles in pulling away and beating Nebraska in the Husker’s first trip to the tourney by a score of 79-61. Today’s action reminded me of what the Big Ten is all about. While Minnesota’s overtime thriller was the best game of the day, the other games still showed us that the Big Ten has tremendous heart, determination, and class. Here’s to a great first day and an awesome second day.

9:00 PM – Gary Russell from Indy and Purdue is leading Nebraska 39-31 at halftime. Upset minded Nebraska kept it close early but they didn’t seem to have an answer for Purdue on the boards. The Boilermakers cashed in on their second chance points going up by 15 at one point. Bo Spencer hits a three and a lay up at the 2:03 mark shrinking the lead to 8. The teams trade baskets to close out the half putting us where we are at halftime.

Game 3 Final – #10 Minnesota 75, #7 Northwestern 68 (OT)

7:40 PM – Northwestern’s dreams came to an end here in OT.  A hot shooting Gopher squad made their free throws and some timely threes to post a 75-68 win. Shurna and Cobb combined for 45 of Northwestern’s points, while Andre Hollins lead Minnesota and all scorers with 25. Minnesota moves on to face TTUN tomorrow in game three of day 2.

Read More

B1G Tournament: Day 1 Preview

Written March 7th, 2012 by Eric

This is still up for grabs, for whomever can take it.

Welcome to March.

Are you ready? Ready for tournament time?

The coaches are. Some of the coaches don’t usually care about the Big Ten Tournament – particularly Tom Izzo. The tournament rarely changes anything heading into the NCAA tournament, and the Regular Season Championship is considered more precious. But Tom Izzo seemingly changed his mind this season after being forced to share the regular season title with the Buckeyes and Wolverines,

We’re going to go win our championship back.

He’s ready for March. Are you?

You’d better be. This Big Ten Tournament promises to be one of the best yet. The field is deep with teams that want to win. Consider Northwestern, who has never been to the NCAA’s, and Minnesota, who would like to prove what they can do as a young team missing a key player. How about Purdue, with Robbie Hummel’s last go around. And that’s not even including Ohio State, Michigan State, and Michigan who would all love to be able to hold the tournament championship over their co-regular season title holders.

Just to name a few.

JoeD, WVaBuckeye, Dave, and I put our heads together and shared some of our thoughts on the Thursday matchups to get you ready for the first day of action.
Read More

Ohio State Defeats Illinois 83-67

Written February 21st, 2012 by Eric

The student section was rocking the #Hop2theRafters t-shirts.

Coming off their fifth loss of the season, the Buckeyes looked to bounce back at home against the struggling Fighting Illini. Unfortunately for Illinois, they simply did not have the horses to keep up with the intense Ohio State attack, and fell 83-67 in Columbus. Meyers Leonard of Illinois led all scorers with 21 points, while Deshaun Thomas led the Buckeyes with 19. William Buford and Aaron Craft rounded out the OSU double digit scorers with 17 and 11 respectively – a solid game from the Buckeye’s leaders.

The Buckeye Nuthouse was proudly sporting shirts that read “Retire #32″ tonight. The shirts were in honor of Dennis Hopson and his excellent career for the Scarlet and Gray in the mid-80′s. To see the students supporting OSU history so enthusiastically was amazing, and I’m proud of the passion that they have shown for Hopson.

The Buckeyes came out of the gate very determined to earn the win tonight. The team played with amazing energy and intensity from the outset. Their passes were sharp and crisp, and placed where only the intended recipient could recieve it. Even better, the Buckeyes were finding open shooters and making great shot selection. The best was William Buford’s shot fake from above the charity stripe that turned into a pass to an open Aaron Craft for three, putting Illinois down by double digits and forcing Bruce Weber into an early timeout.

Thad Matta mixed up the bench rotations in a big way. Instead of having Shannon Scott come in solely for Aaron Craft as we have seen all season long, Scott came in and played the two for Lenzelle Smith. That allowed the Buckeyes to have a pair of good ball control point guards in the game. We also saw Sam Thompson come into the game for Buford early and get quality playing time, including an amazing one handed tomahawk ally-oop from the aforementioned Scott.
Read More

BBN Basketball LiveBlog: Illinois Part 2

Written February 21st, 2012 by Eric

Happy Mardi Gras! The Bucks are back in Columbus for their rematch with the Fighting Illini! The game tips at 7:00 PM EST on ESPN.

Keep your eyes open on this game. Our own WVaBuckeye put together a set of shirts for the Nuthouse to help promote the #Hop2TheRafters cause

While you wait, go checkout our friends in the Buckeye Bloggers Network! the Buckeye Blog, OSU Silver Bullet, Buckeye House Call, Our Honor Defend, and Men of the Scarlet and Gray. Fox Sports Ohio also joins us as usual. The liveblog will kickoff at 6:30 PM EST.

Go Bucks!

Pregame Glance II: Illinois

Written February 20th, 2012 by Joe Dexter

Game Number two of the season series between the Ohio State Buckeyes and Illinois Fighting Ilini rolls on tomorrow night on ESPN/ESPN3 at 7 PM ET. The Buckeyes look to put two losses in their last three games behind them.

Meanwhile, the struggling Illini look to a repeat performance from Brandon Paul the last time these two teams met.  After a in depth look at Bruce Weber’s fighting Illini earlier in the year, It’s time to get you updated on what’s happening lately.

Can Brandon Paul Do It Again?

It’s Ugly in Urbana:

For Buckeye fans squirming in their seats the last few weeks, remember that at this point of the year, Illinois fans have become accustomed to long, drawn out losing streaks at the end of the season.

Head coach Bruce Weber is yet again on the hot seat, after his squad has lost 8 of the last nine ballgames since beating Ohio State in heroic fashion earlier this season.  Their only win was a one point squeaker against Michigan State. Since that point, the Spartans have shot to the top of the conference standings, while the Orange and Blue are competing with Penn State and Nebraska for last place in the conference.

Of course, by definition, you’re not really fighting for it when you lose to Nebraska by 23.  A continuing sign that the wheels are falling off in Urbana.  In Lincoln, the Illini were statistically out of competition with 9:30 to go in the ballgame.

Read More

Buckeye Basketball Breakdown: Hot Hands

Written January 13th, 2012 by Eric

William Buford defines hot-and-cold shooting.

Many of you probably could have guessed, had you know that a Basketball Breakdown was pending, that this would be the topic of choice for this week. For those that couldn’t, you probably didn’t see the incredible 43 point display that Illinois guard Brandon Paul put on the Buckeyes on Tuesday night. You don’t necessarily want to watch the highlights – it’s pretty gory.

Let me start out from the get-go by saying that scoring 40+ points in a game is an incredible feat. Much applause to Mr. Paul for pulling it off, particularly against the #5 team in the country (at the time). There’s a reason the Buckeyes are ranked so high, and solid defense is one of them. Scoring that many points against a sound defensive team makes it just all the more impressive.

But how can it happen? How can such a sound defensive team allow a player to score so many points? I submit that this had less to do with poor play from the Buckeyes (though that definitely contributed) than it did with some excellent planning and fantastic play on Illinois’ side of the ball. I definitely don’t want to see anyone take anything away from Brandon by saying that it was entirely Ohio State’s fault. He (and his team) had a lot to do with it.

Let’s start by asking how you can tell if a player a hot (or cold) night.  Obviously when you’re watching a game you can see it in the player’s and team’s reactions to him hitting (or missing) a lot of shots.  Statistically, it’s a little more difficult.  You have to look at the player’s averages – preferably over a season, but career can work too – and look at how statistically ridiculous a particular night of shooting is.

Let’s consider William Buford first.  Buford has been accused of having some pretty cold nights and not producing particularly well.  Looking at his averages, Buford is scoring a little more than 15 points per outing this year.  If you consider that he plays on a team with two other lights-out scorers (Jared Sullinger and DeShaun Thomas), and you consider that a good team typically has one guy who averages more than 15 per night, then it’s suggestive that he’s not as cold as people think.
Read More

Pregame Glance: Illinois

Written January 9th, 2012 by Eric

The Bucks continue their road tour by taking on the enigmatic Fighting Illini in Urbana-Champaign. Here’s the data:

The Fighting Illini

School: University of Illinois
Location: Urbana and Champaign, Illinois
Founded: 1867
Student Population: 41,495
School Type: Public
Division: NCAA
Conference: Big Ten Conference
Stadium: Assembly Hall
Seating: 16,618
Built: 1963
Head Coach: Bruce Weber
Year: 7th

Read More

tBBC Radio Hour: 2011 Basketball Season Preview Part 1

Written October 20th, 2011 by Eric

It’s nearly time for the Basketball Bucks to take the hardwood again, and Eric and Joe Dexter are here to talk all things hardwood! The pair reminisces about last years great squad, and looks forward to the things to come – particularly newcomers Amir Williams and Shannon Scott. They also talk about the gains made by Sullinger, Craft, Buford, Deshaun Thomas, and Jordan Sibert, and what that will ultimately mean for this team. Lastly, they spend some time talking about the talent around the Big Ten, and what kind of a challenge the Buckeyes might have in repeating as Big Ten Champs.

Eric and Joe are very excited to chat with Bob Baptist of the Columbus Dispatch during this week’s interview. They discuss all things Buckeye Basketball, and is certainly a conversation you don’t want to miss!

PS – Joe made a little gaffe on this week’s podcast, botching the name of a former Buckeye. The first person to post in the comments with correct answers to all three of the following:

  • The name Joe was trying to say,
  • The name Joe actually said,
  • And, who exactly that person in the second bullet point is,

will win a free T-Shirt from the guys at Time And Change! You can also connect with them at this Saturday’s mega launch party if you’re in Columbus. Read More