Ohio State gets back into action after taking care of the North Florida Ospreys last Friday, 99-64. The #5 Buckeyes (5-0) host the Maryland Terrapins in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. The Terrapins (5-2) are riding a 4-game winning streak. As an aside, the Ohio State and Maryland women’s basketball teams are also playing tonight at 7:00 PM in College Park, MD. If you want to catch OSU-Maryland basketball, tonight is the night for you.
Here’s a profile on the University of Maryland
School: University of Maryland
Location: College Park, MD
Student Population: 26,487
School Type: Public, coed
Conference: ACC (for now)
Arena: Comcast Center
Head Coach: Mark Turgeon
Here we are, rolling into the holidays and Ohio State hosts the University of North Florida Ospreys this Friday, with the tip-off scheduled for 5:00 PM EST. In the past week and a half, the Buckeyes have defeated the Golden Eagles, the Eagles and now face the Ospreys. This could be a bad month for birds of prey.
Here’s a profile on University of North Florida.
School: University of North Florida Ospreys
Location: Jacksonville, FL
Student Population: 16,357
School Type: Public, coed
Conference: Atlantic Sun Conference
Head Coach: Mathew Driscoll
It was like Christmas for Buckeye basketball fans, as the Buckeyes opened up the season in exhibition play with a 93-63 win over Walsh university. As many would expect in the first game of the season, many questions were answered and many still loom. Most importantly though, the Bucks took advantage of a true tune up game with a top notch D2 program from the GLIAC conference.
Head Coach Thad Matta went with what many expected to be the starting five this season to open up the game. The two seniors, Aaron Craft and Lenzelle Smith started at guard, with Sam Thompson at the three, LaQuinton Ross at the four and Amir Williams at the 5.
Early and often, the defensive intensity was spectacular. The best defensive backcourt in the country lived up to it’s reputation. Shannon Scott came off the bench and got three or four blocks and a handful of steals in the first half to help set the tone. Aaron Craft was simply amazing at pushing defenders off to either Lenzelle Smith, Shannon Scott, or Sam Thompson to allow them to get the steal. Ohio State jumped ahead early in part to the 17 turnovers they were able to force in the first half and finished strong.
Craft led the way with 14 points and 5 assists. Smith finished 15 points and 8 boards, while Shannon Scott had a stat stuffing game — 9 points 7 rebounds and 4 assists.
In the post, Amir Williams showed what seems to be major improvement when it came to spacing and fronting the basket. On defense, he used his better positioning and pure athletic ability to block shots and grab some form rebounds The Motor City big man put together 10 rebounds — seven in the first half and added 8 points. Marc Loving showed early as well why he will be a solid option off the bench for coach Matta as a freshman. The Toledo native had some great offensive moves to the basket. His play will be key if the Bucks plan to play with any type of a larger lineup, where LaQuinton Ross can move to the small forward position. We also saw Loving in at power forward in the second half, paired with Ross at the 5. Loving added 9 rebounds, which was great to see from power forward position. He also dropped five points.
Ross, who might be the biggest x-factor of the season played extremely well on offense. Fans know about his range, but it was evident that he has improved his strength in the paint, with many solid drives to the basket. He made five trips to the charity stripe in the game. His offense is right where you hope for it to be to start the season. He tallied 15 points and really showed that he can take over games as needed.
Amedeo Della Valle showed his range from deep. Afroman drained three treys in the ballgame and finished with 14 points.
The only scholarship player not to see time on the floor was Kam Williams, the freshman guard.
Up next for the Buckeyes, a match-up with Morgan State on Saturday to open up the regular season. You can catch the game on the Big Ten Digital Network or Ohio State Radio Network.
Continued thoughts and prayers to our friends in Cowboy and Sooner land… soundtrack should be obvious for today.
Simon’s contract has a total value of $2.545 million, including a $385,652 signing bonus. The deal includes base salaries of $405,000, $495,000, $585,000 and $675,000.
I couldn’t believe an entire basketball season had passed us by and I hadn’t yet written a Buckeye Basketball Breakdown. It just goes to show you what the final year of a graduate studies program can do to your soul…and your free time. But those are similar really.
Given how the NCAA Tournament wrapped up, I wanted to take the opportunity to talk about what we saw this year from the Buckeyes, and what we might have to look forward to in the future.
I will be the first to admit that I was particularly worried about this team going into Big Ten play. Seeing the Buckeyes meltdown against Duke, struggle with Kansas at home, and generally perform lackadaisically in the first half of every game, I was quite pessimistic on the night of January 4th. I knew the team was growing, I could see their development, but I was extremely worried by what I had seen to that point.
And then the first Illinois game happened the very next day.
Surprisingly, my opinions of the team improved dramatically after that. They fought hard and picked up a pair of wins in that four game stretch, including a huge win against Michigan. They started to clue in to how to play proper basketball, but they were still missing something.
Yes, your eyes do not deceive you, it does indeed say “basketball” up there. While everyone is overloading from the celebration of Coach Meyers first game as the head coach of THE Ohio State university and a W against Miami of Ohio, we thought we’d introduce you to a Tuesday fixture of basketball with tBBC. Myself, Eric, and Gary Russell are going to do our best to keep you updated on the basketball Buckeyes with news as it is ready and a roundtable or maybe even a chat on Tuesday’s with some people in the know.
Who’s the one carryover from last season who needs to have a big off season and why?
Eric – In terms of needing a big off-season, there’s only one obvious answer – Amir Williams. Matta teams tend to under perform when he doesn’t have a top notch guy in the paint to focus the attention on. Amir Williams was supposed to be a huge get for the Buckeyes when we recruited him, but the few times we saw him last season he looked stiff and immobile on offense – though his defense was pretty good. He absolutely needs to have worked on his offense in a big way, both in moving without the ball and in getting a hip into the defender when posting up.
One other key to his offense – he needs to be able to pass back out of the paint. Buckeye fans got very spoiled with Sullinger and his ability to feed guys outside the arc after attracting the entire defense. This offense will work a lot better if Williams can come even half-way towards replicating that trait.
I’m going to give a #2 answer as well, because I can. Lenzelle Smith Jr. needs to have a big off-season. He did a laudable job last season, especially towards the end. He needs to carry that momentum into this season and be a significant scoring option for this team.
It looks like another date has been set in the Tony Parker sweepstakes. According to the Atlanta Journal Constitution’s Michael Carvell, the Four time Georgia State Champion was set to make a decision sometime today. Miller Grove head coach Sharman White told the paper last Sunday that the top 25 ranked recruit is ready to make his decision and end the process.
Yet again though, we’ll have to wait even further than expected.
At this point, Parker and his family say that they will let the world know where to expect arguably the best 0ffensive big man in this class to land on Monday. Many speculate it’s because The Georgia product has soured on UCLA and is looking at Kansas and Duke more and more as his decision looms. High school head coach Sharman White shared this with folks on Wednesday through the Atlanta Journal constitution.
“Tony and his family just wanted a little more time. That way, they will get the weekend to hammer it out. No official time has been set but it will likely be around 3:30 or 4 p.m.”
Parker, who had planned to announce his school of choice at the start of the signing period, has narrowed it down to UCLA, Georgia, Duke, Kansas and Ohio State.
(Today starts a series of updates involving the future of the Buckeyes on the hardwood. Every once in a while, tBBC will get you updated on those that could be future Buckeyes. As the tradition and program prestige grows under the Thad Matta Era, so does the talent that could hit the court. Today we update you on a few blue chip recruits that could be part of the 2013 Ohio State recruiting class.)
It’s amazing what the future holds when things are done the right way. Championship runs give young players a glimpse of what the future holds when they become part of something special. Coaching the right way and instilling values beyond the basketball court has led players to the next level of competition. Success breeds success. Now as we look forward to the future of the Buckeyes on the hardwood, one thing has become clear.
The talent in the current and recent classes has built a customary tradition of excellence on and off the court at The Ohio State University.
The class of 2013 shouldn’t be any different as in-state talent and national recruits have kept their eyes on one of the fastest growing programs in the country. Due to the recent success on the court, and the graduation of players to the NBA, there are many up and coming recruits wondering what it would be like to become the next great Buckeye. Thanks to the help of current players and one of — if not the best coaching and recruiting staffs in the nation.