Thanks for popping by on a Wednesday morning, even if the news for today probably won’t be as exciting as it was seven days ago. Thanks, too, for your patience with the website this week… the people responsible for the tech glitches have been appropriately dealt with. Given our lead bullet point today, here’s your Wednesday Musical Distraction.
|Not content to only preview Ohio State’s schedule, Patrick is taking a two part look at the B1G for 2014. Here’s a look at the newbies and our Western Division brethren; after lunch the East gets due scrutiny in addition to the championship game predictions.|
When the dust settled on the 2013-14 season, the B1G had a Rose Bowl champion and……another bad bowl record as a conference.
Michigan State and Nebraska were the lone winners (Rose and Gator Bowls respectively) and the conference was 2-7 overall. Yet even after that showing, many pundits feel like the B1G is poised to be a top tier conference this season. When the season opens, they will more than likely have two top 10 teams (Michigan State and Ohio State) as well as a slew of others ranked in the top 25.
The B1G welcomes two new members this season as well. Maryland and Rutgers will make their football debuts in 2014. The B1G received a ton of criticism for the recent additions. Other conferences such as the SEC are adding schools like Texas A&M and Missouri while many people feel the B1G adding “schedule padders” for football. What people won’t tell you is that these two schools gets the B1G into markets (Washington DC and New York) that they haven’t been in since its inception.
The non conference schedules for a lot of the B1G schools is very very good this season. Defending champion MSU will travel west to Eugene, Oregon to take on the Ducks, Ohio State welcomes Va Tech into Columbus, Wisconsin takes on LSU in Houston, Nebraska travels to Fresno for a battle with Fresno St and then back home the following week to take on the Miami Hurricanes, Michigan will try to avenge a loss to Appalachian St (did I really just type that) as well as take on Notre Dame for the last time and welcome the Utes of Utah to Ann Arbor, and Minnesota will travel to Texas to battle TCU. The B1G as a conference will need a lot of wins from these non conference tilts in order to gain some respect from the rest of the country and the national media
2014 will also mark the first year of new conference alignment. Gone are the awful Leaders and Legends divisions and we finally get a traditional East/West divisions.
*2014 will also mark the 3rd year that Penn State will be ineligible for post season play.
Even though the B1G divided up the divisions by east/west location, many feel the west is by far the weaker of the two. Nebraska and Wisconsin should battle for the next few years for the west crown with little challenge. Read More
OK folks, we’re going to try something a bit different this afternoon. Eric is out of town on some Very Important Business so I’ll be holding down the fort:
Assuming Ohio State beats Purdue (I don’t want to think of an alternative outcome), we’ll be back here tomorrow afternoon at approximately the same time. Tomorrow’s format, assuming winter storm Vulcan does screw up Eric’s travel plans will be that I’ll be your host once again. So, I guess we’ll have to show up to find out.
Anyway, today’s game is broadcast on BTN and should tip off around 2:25-2:30, or so. See you there!
The Boilermakers visited the Buckeyes this evening in Columbus for the return match of their two game series. Despite a slow start, and a bit of back and forth play, the game was all Ohio State as the Buckeyes secured the 67-49 victory. Surprisingly, LaQuinton Ross led the Buckeyes in scoring with 17 points, closely followed by Lenzelle Smith Jr. with 16. For the Boilermakers, Kendall Stephens put together 12 points off the bench, while AJ Hammons and Rapheal Davis both earned 11 a piece. The win gave the Buckeyes their third straight in Big Ten play.
Things started from a defensive perspective. Both teams demonstrated good movement against the offensive motion, and forced a number of turnovers early. The first points weren’t even scored until two minutes had elapsed, and Purdue was able to net the first three buckets of the game. The Bucks simply struggled to find good shots on the offensive end, and weren’t able to score until the fifth minute of the game on a Sam Thompson ally-oop.
The momentum changed in a hurry following the first TV timeout. The Buckeyes went on an 8 point unanswered tear to put together a 10-0 run and claim their first lead of the game. It was only ended by a Kendall Stevens three pointer after four minutes had ellapsed. Things had changed as the Buckeyes settled down in their attack, focused on getting the ball low against Purdue’s man defense. OSU also worked harder on the boards and began to balance the rebounding numbers.
With both teams locked into the game, they settled down into a steady back and forth battle. For the most part, it seemed that when one team was locked in defensively, so was the opponent. If one them started to pick up on the offensive end, it was reciprocated on the other end. That said, there wasn’t much in the way of offense through the first twelve minutes. The Boilermakers shot 5-20, while the Bucks hit only 7-18 by the third TV timeout.
Purdue returns the favor this evening, joining the Buckeyes in Columbus for a little Shooty Hoops action.
The game is scheduled to tip off at 6:00 PM Eastern Time on the Big Ten Network. Come chat with all of your favorite Buckeye bloggers and friends! Go Bucks!
Tight End, Loose Cannon? Kyle Rowland of Eleven Warriors broke the news late Tuesday that Buckeye tight end Marcus Baugh had been suspended from the team indefinitely for yet another issue with underaged alcohol usage. While many of us would file this either under “meh” or “college lyfe!!”, it’s important to note that this would be Baugh’s third “incident” while a Buckeye, and his second involving alcohol. He was removed from scholarship last summer, and was removed from team activities in September as well… it will be interesting to see if Coach Meyer believes in a “three strikes and you’re done” policy. Baugh has always been seen as an amazing athlete, but his absence will mean that the other tight ends in the system (Heuerman, Moore, and Vannett) may be asked to bear the burden during the spring and beyond; the 2014 recruiting class does not have a tight end in the mix as of yet.
The Buckeyes kicked off their B1G schedule with a tall order in the #17th ranked Boilermakers of Purdue. Cait Craft, Ameryst Alston, Darryce Moore, Martina Ellerbe and Amy Scullion got the start and they didn’t disappoint the Buckeye faithful in attendance in the first half.
Craft kept her hot streak of three’s on the season going and put the Buckeyes up 5-2 early with her first of the night, the 22nd of her young season.Ellerbe took over midway through the first half connecting on two of two from three point land and put up 8 points early.
The Buckeyes were trailing at the under eight media time-out but Darryce Moore was getting red-hot on the boards with five already to go with six points. The Buckeyes were dominating the boards in the first half. They finished the half only down two 39-37 and riding on the shooting of Ellerbe who finished with ten points at half. Buckeyes killing it on the boards 22-15(9 offensive).
Ellerbe continued her onslaught in the second half and took the Buckeyes on a tear with 16 points, that turned into a great run and the Buckeyes were up 59-50 at the 12:06 mark forcing a Boilermaker timeout and continuing to shoot lights out from the floor and the free throw line. Buckeyes hit their 7th three just prior to the under eight timeout and stay on top 67-54.
KK Houser for the Boilermakers was on fire the entire game and near unstoppable. After trading shots on both ends and hitting back to back threes for the boilers, the Buckeyes answered and Craft(15), Ellerbe(19), Moore(14), and Alston(12) all in double digits scoring leading the way. Buckeyes head to under four media timeout with biggest lead of the night 80-64.
Things turned a little sloppy down the stretch, but Purdue couldn’t hit some free throws and headed into the final minute still down by ten to the upstart Buckeyes at home in the Schott. Adams became the fifth player in double digits with an easy lay-in at the fifty second mark of the game.
The 17th ranked Boilers put up a fight behind 26 from KK Houser, 16 by Whitney Bays and 13 by Courtney Moses but couldn’t keep up with the hot shooting and great rebounding by the Buckeyes on the night. It’s a great win at home for Coach McGuff and staff and served notice the Buckeyes aren’t going away without a fight.
The Buckeyes win the game 89-78 behind 19 a piece from Ellerbe and Alston, 15 from Craft, 14 from Moore and 10 from Adams. The Buckeyes out-rebounded the Boilers 34-14(unofficial) and had 8 more assists on the night 18-10. Raven Ferguson came off the bench to almost score in double digits with 8 points to go with 5 rebounds and 6 assists which was the game high for all players.
After a rough stretch in December losing 4 of 5 to some pretty tough talent. the Buckeyes appear prepared for their tough conference slate and take on the Wolverines this Sunday in the Schott, tip-off is at 5p.m.
It’s time for the B1G Conference season! The Buckeyes are travelling to West Lafayette to take on the Purdue Boilermakers.
The game is scheduled to start at 1:00 PM Eastern. Stop by and chat with us during the game! Go Bucks!