Buckeyes, Hoosiers End 2011 in Bloomington
Indiana native Deshaun Thomas
Dec. 30, 2011
Dec. 31, 2011
No. 2 Ohio State Buckeyes (13-1, 1-0) at No. 13 Indiana Hoosiers (12-1, 0-1)
Site: Assembly Hall (17,357)
Game Time: 6:05 p.m. ET
Talent: Dave O'Brien (play-by-play), Dan Dakich (expert analysis)
Radio: OSU-IMG Sports Network (56 stations)
Satellite Radio: Sirius OSU 112/IU 128, XM-191
Local Radio: WBNS FM-97.1 AM-1460
Radio Talent: Herb Howenstine (play-by-play), Ron Stokes (expert analysis)
100 Years in Big Ten
Ohio State celebrates 100 years as a member of the Big Ten Conference in men's basketball in 2012. The Buckeyes finished in the No. 6 spot in the 1913 conference standings, the first season of league play. Over the 99 previous seasons, Ohio State has earned 19 Big Ten regular-season titles with 23 NCAA tournament appearances, one national championship (1960) and nine trips to the Final Four. Eight former coaches and players are members of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame while nearly 50 student-athletes have been drafted by National Basketball Association teams, including 22 in the first round.
The Buckeyes on New Year's Eve
Ohio State is 17-5 all-time in games played on New Year's Eve. The Buckeyes have won five of the last six on this date, including two of the last three vs. Big Ten opponents. The Buckeyes have been ranked among the nation's Top 25 in each of the last four games on this date and have played the last three on the road. As a ranked team, Ohio State is 5-1 on New Year's Eve.
Date W/L Opponent, Score
12/31/12 W @Toledo St. Johns 36-27
12/31/15 L @Detroit YMCA 11-20
12/31/19 W @Toledo 33-20
12/31/20 W Cornell 33-22
12/31/23 W Yale 43-30
12/31/24 W Butler 34-25
12/31/26 W Cornell 41-20
12/31/27 L @Pittsburgh 32-50
12/31/29 L @Pittsburgh (ot) 33-38
12/31/30 W Cornell 38-24
12/31/31 L Vanderbilt 27-28
12/31/34 W @Xavier 31-28
12/31/36 W @UCLA 48-39
12/31/42 W @Pittsburgh 48-44
12/31/60 W vs. St. Bonaventure 84(1)-82
12/31/62 W BYU 97(2)-91
12/31/63 L @St. Louis (2ot) 89-91
12/31/65 W West Texas 78-53
12/31/04 W St. Joseph's 72-61
12/31/07 W Louisiana State 78(21)-76
12/31/08 W Iowa 68(24)-65
12/31/09 L @Wisconsin 43(15)-65(23)
12/31/10 W @Indiana 85(2)-67
Buckehes Open 100th Season in Big Ten
This is the 100th season of Big Ten membership in men's basketball for the Buckeyes. Ohio State is 52-44 (.542) in conference openers, 66-30 (.688) in league home openers and 33-62 (.347) in the first road game of the season in Big Ten play. When the Buckeyes open the Big Ten season at home, there record is 37-16 (.698). When Ohio State begins Big Ten play on the road, the record is 16-28 (.364).
W L OSU W%
Big Ten Openers 52 44 0.542
Big Ten Home Openers 66 30 0.688
Big Ten Road Openers 33 62 0.347
Open Big Ten at Home 37 16 0.698
Open Big Ten on Road 16 28 0.364
Ohio State vs. Indiana
Indiana leads the all-time series with the Buckeyes 99-74 with the Buckeyes winning each of the last six meetings, including three in Bloomington. Overall, the Hoosiers are 60-23 vs. the Buckeyes in Bloomington. Ohio State is 50-34 over the series in Columbus. Ohio State is currently on its longest win streak in the series. The teams will meet again Jan. 15 in Columbus. Game time will either be 1:30 or 4:30 p.m. and will be televised by CBS. The Buckeyes enter the game No. 2 nationally in the most recent Associated Press Poll. As a ranked team, Ohio State is 18-11 in the series. Against ranked IU teams, Ohio State is 16-31. When both teams are ranked, the Buckeyes own a 5-7 record in the series. William Buford is the most experienced Buckeye in the Indiana series with six career meetings vs. the Hoosiers. He averages a team-best 19.8 points per game to go with 4.7 rebounds. He's made 94 pct. of his foul shots (17-18) and 54 pct. of his field goals (44-81), including 14 of 25 3-pointers (.560). As freshmen, Jared Sullinger (12.0 ppg.) and Deshaun Thomas (15.0 ppg.) contributed double digits offensively. Sullinger added 8.0 rebounds a game while Thomas was 8-12 from the field (.667) and 12-14 from the foul line.
OHIO STATE VS. THE BIG TEN
Ohio State is 725-662 vs. current members of the Big Ten Conference. The Buckeyes are playing their 100th season of Big Ten Basketball this season. Nebraska and the Buckeyes will face each other for the first time as conference members Jan. 3 in Columbus.
OSU vs. The BIG TEN
Michigan State 51-58
Penn State 27-12
Last Time vs. Indiana
Deshaun Thomas, the 2010 Indiana Mr. Basketball, came out of a slump with 22 points to lead No. 2 Ohio State past Indiana 82-61. Thomas scored all the points during a 14-3 first-half run that spanned 3:36. He had managed just 13 points in the previous seven games. William Buford added 15 points and Jon Diebler and David Lighty each had 11 for the Buckeyes. The defeat was Indiana's sixth in a row to Ohio State. Verdell Jones III had 14 points for the Hoosiers. Jared Sullinger, leading Ohio State in scoring (17.8) and rebounding (9.9), picked up two fouls early and was limited to five points and seven rebounds in just 13 minutes. Ahead by 15 at the break, the Buckeyes scored 13 of the first 17 points against the Hoosiers in the second half. Thomas was the story for the Buckeyes in the first half. He gave them a lift after starters Sullinger, Lighty and Dallas Lauderdale each picked up two fouls. Indiana led 8-7 after Derek Elston scissored through the lane for a layup at the 16:35 mark, but didn't score again for almost 8 minutes, until Elston scored again on a short jumper. Then Thomas took over, hitting two foul shots, then swishing back-to-back 3-pointers. He took an assist pass from Lauderdale for another bucket inside, then spun in a reverse layup and ended the run with another reverse move off glass.
Craft A Candidate for Cousy Award
Sophomore Aaron Craft is among 60 initial candidates for the Bob Cousy Award. The annual honor, named for Hall of Famer and former Boston Celtic Bob Cousy, recognizes the top point guards in college basketball. This original list of candidates will be narrowed down to a final 20 by Jan. 1, final 10 by Feb. 1 and final five by March 1. Craft currently leads the Buckeyes in assists (75) and steals (38).
Thomas Named Big Ten Player of Week
Ohio State sophomore Deshaun Thomas made 17-consecutive shots from inside the 3-point line in games vs. South Carolina Upstate (Dec. 14) and at South Carolina (Dec. 17). He made his last six attempts against S.C. Upstate and then all 11 2-pointers in the road win at South Carolina. For the season he is shooting 63 percent from 2-point range (64-102). He was 19-21 from short range the week of Dec. 12 while shooting 74 percent overall (23-31), including a 13-16 shooting effort at South Carolina, where he tallied a career-high 30 points. He averaged 26.5 points in the two games. His efforts earned him the Big Ten Player of the Week honor. The last Ohio State player to earn the honor was Jon Diebler March 7, 2011. Thomas was named the league's freshman of the week once last season.
Matta Reaches 300, 200 at OSU
Thad Matta has a career record of 305-89 (394 career games) over 12 years as a head coach, which includes a 203-58 record in eight seasons at Ohio State. Matta coached for one season at Butler and three at Xavier before taking over the Ohio State program for the 2004-05 season. In his time with the Buckeyes, Matta has four Big Ten regular season titles and three Big Ten tournament crowns. The Buckeyes have been to five NCAA tournaments with Matta at the helm. He has taken nine teams to NCAA tournament play and won the 2008 National Invitational Tournament with Ohio State.
The Third to 200 as a Buckeye
Two previous coaches have reached the 200-win plateau at Ohio State. Thad Matta became the third with the 74-66 win at South Carolina Dec. 17. Fred Taylor recorded 297 career victories from 1959-1976 while also earning 158 Big Ten Conference regular-season victories. Harold G. Olsen tallied 259 all-time wins from 1923-46. He accumulated 154 Big Ten victories. Matta has 203 wins as a Buckeye over eight seasons with 86 wins in Big Ten regular-season play. His winning percentage of 78.1 overall and 71.1 in conference play are tops among the 13 head coaches in Ohio State history.
Ross Returns to Ohio State Roster
LaQuinton Ross, a 6-foot-8-inch freshman forward from Jackson, Miss., was been added to the Ohio Stare roster for the remainder of his freshman season. Ross attended classes and worked out with the Buckeyes over the summer before leaving the team just prior to the start of official practice in October to work on meeting NCAA academic qualification requirements. He met those requirements and joined the team Dec. 11. He officially became eligible Dec. 9. He dressed for the first time in his No. 10 Ohio State uniform vs. South Carolina Upstate. His first game action came against Miami (Ohio) at Nationwide Arena Dec. 22. He knocked down his first career field goal attempt, a 3-pointer, and finished with 5 points in four minutes of court time.
NCAA Stats Update (as of 12/18/11)
Ohio State rates among the Top 10 in several NCAA statistical categories after nine games. The Buckeyes are No. 2 in scoring margin (+23.2 ppg.), No. 2 in turnover margin (+8.0), No. 5 in assist/turnover ratio (+1.58), No. 7 in assists per game (18.6) and No. 10 in field goal percentage (.503). The Buckeyes have the third longest home win streak in the country at 34. Duke and Kentucky are tied at 40.
Buford Stands Tall vs. the Ranked
In wins vs. No. 7 Florida and No. 3 Duke along with the loss at No. 13 Kansas, senior William Buford has led the Buckeyes in scoring (20.7 ppg.), minutes (39.7 mpg.) and free throw percentage (11-12, .917). Four players have averaged double figures with Jared Sullinger (18.5 ppg.), Deshaun Thomas (17.3 ppg.) and Aaron Craft (13.7 ppg.) all over single digits. Sullinger led the way on the boards with 7.0 rpg. Craft has delivered 21 assists and recorded six steals.
Ohio State No. 2 in AP, Coaches Polls
Ohio State moved up to No. 2 in the Associated Press poll released Nov. 28 and has remained there in the polls since. The Buckeyes are 41-9 all-time as the second-ranked team in the AP poll and 34-30 when both teams are ranked in the Top 15 after the loss to No. 13 Kansas. In the most recent poll seven Buckeyes' opponents are among the Top 25.
Buford 17th to Reach 1,500 Career Pts.
With 23 points against VMI Nov. 23, senior William Buford surpassed 1,500 career points to become the 17th Buckeye in history to reach that mark. Over 120 career games, Buford has averaged 13.8 points for a total of 1,657. He also became the 16th player all-time to reach both 1,500 points and the 500-rebound mark (532) with five boards vs. Duke Nov. 29.
Sullinger Moving up Career Double-Double Charts
Sophomore Jared Sullinger has recorded at least 10 points and 10 rebounds in two of the last three games he played for a career total of 25. He tied the Ohio State freshman record with 18 double-doubles a season ago. His career total 13th-T all-time with Larry Huston (1957-59). Evan Turner was the most recent Buckeye to reach 20 or more career double-doubles with 27 from 2008-10. That total is tied for No. 11 all-time with John Havlicek (1960-62). Through 14 games, Sullinger is averaging 16.6 points and 9.6 rebounds a game. He tallied 17.2 points and 10.2 rebounds a game as a freshman.
Buckeyes Opened with Eight at Home
The Buckeyes played the last of their first eight games at home, the longest streak of home games to start a season since the 1909-10 team began the campaign with 10-consecutive games in Columbus, vs. UTPA Dec. 3. That run was the longest to start a season since the opening of Value City Arena for the 1998-99 season. The Buckeyes opened with six at home (6-0) in 2006-07 at VCA and seven games (5-2) at St. John Arena in 1997-98. The Buckeyes made their first road trip of the season this year to Kansas Dec. 10.
Noting the Northwestern Game (Dec. 28)
• The win vs. Northwestern was the 34th-consecutive victory at home for Ohio State dating back to the game vs. Michigan on Feb. 27, 2010. The streak is the third-longest in the country behind Duke and Kentucky.
• The 34-consecutive home game win streak is the second-longest in Ohio State history. The Buckeyes won 50 in a row from 12/1/59 - 12/11/64.
• In its 100th year as a member of the Big Ten, Ohio State improves to 66-30 in conference season openers. The mark moves to 52-44 overall in Big Ten openers.
• The Buckeyes move to 110-45 all-time vs. Northwestern, having won four in a row in the series. The 110 wins are the most victories by Ohio State against any opponent in team history.
• In Columbus, Ohio State owns an impressive 64-14 mark vs. the Wildcats, including a 28-game home win streak. Northwestern's last victory in Columbus was an 83-72 win in St. John Arena on 2/24/77.
• As a ranked team, the Scarlet and Gray is 33-2 vs. Northwestern. Ohio State has won 13 consecutive as a ranked team in the series.
• The game vs. Northwestern was the 68th sellout in Value City Arena history. The Buckeyes own a 55-13 record in those contests, including a 44-9 mark vs. Big Ten opponents. They are 2-0 this year (Duke, 11/29/11). The 19,049 capacity will be the largest crowd of the year because students occupying the remaining home games decrease capacity to 18,809.
• The 33 point win was the largest vs. Northwestern since a 102-62 win in Evanston, Ill., on 1/10/91.
• Ohio State improves to 725-662 overall in the Big Ten. They are 34-7 in their last 41 Big Ten matchups, dating back to 3/8/09.
• Ohio State has won 106 of its last 107 games against unranked opponents in Columbus, including 55 in a row, the longest active streak in the nation.
• Ohio State is 50-1 in its last 51 games at Value City Arena, dating back to Feb. 24, 2009.
• The Buckeyes have now won by double figures in 11 of their 13 victories this year. Ten of their wins have been by 22 or more points.
• As a ranked team, Ohio State is 408-109 overall and when ranked in the AP Top 10, the Buckeyes are 287-60.
• When ranked in the Top 3 of the Associated Press, Ohio State is 144-21.
• As the AP No. 2 ranked team in the nation, Ohio State improves to 41-9 overall.
• The Buckeyes own a 115-2 record vs. unranked opponents at home since the 2004-05 season.
• Since the start of the 2008-09 season, Ohio State has accumulated 96 victories which is the fifth most during that period (Duke-105, Kansas-103, Syracuse-97, Kentucky-97, Ohio State-96, Pitt-95).
• This is the 274th-consecutive game Ohio State has made at least one 3-point field goal (1/10/04 vs. Penn State was the last game with zero made).
• Three players scored in double figures for Ohio State. So far this season, seven Buckeyes have scored in doubles figures a total of 45 times.
• The Buckeyes outshot Northwestern from the free-throw line 30-19. On the year, Ohio State is +120 in free throw attempts.
• The starting lineup of Buford, Craft, Smith, Jr., Sullinger and Thomas is 11-0 this season.
• Ohio State has had a player record a double-double in 831 games. The Buckeyes are 572-259 in those contests (.688). Jared Sullinger had a double-double (17 points, 14 rebounds) vs. Northwestern, the 25th of his career.
• Ohio State went on a 28-10 run over 11:53 late in the second half to increase their lead heading into halftime.
• The Buckeyes are No. 2 in average turnover margin in the country with +8.2 per game. Ohio State was +2.0 vs. Northwestern.
• The Buckeyes had 15 team assists vs. Northwestern. They are averaging 18.6 apg, which places them No. 7 in the country.
• The win vs. Northwestern was Coach Thad Matta's 203rd win at Ohio State.
• Matta's career record moves to 305-89 overall and 203-58 at Ohio State.
• With the win, Matta moves to 12-1 vs. Northwestern and 103-41 in the Big Ten.
• Matta's .781 winning percentage at Ohio State is the best among Big Ten coaches since Matta became the Buckeyes' head coach in 2004.
• Ohio State is 49-7 in December under Coach Matta.
• Ohio State is now 134-23 overall at Value City Arena and 130-10 under Matta.
• Ohio State is 188-5 under Matta when leading with five minutes to play, including 13-0 this year.
• The Scarlet and Gray are 122-17 when grabbing more rebounds than the opponent, including 10-0 this season (OSU outrebounded Northwestern 49-30).
• When shooting a better percentage than the opponent, Ohio State improves to 180-18 under Matta, including 13-0 this season.
• The Buckeyes improve to 172-46 when limiting themselves to under 15 total turnovers (Ohio State had nine turnovers vs. Northwestern).
• With 87 points, Ohio State is 11-0 this season and 139-11 when scoring 70 or more points in a game under Matta.
• The start was William Buford's 112th donning the Scarlet and Gray, passing Kelvin Ransey for ninth place in career games started at Ohio State.
• Buford is just the fourth Buckeye in recorded history to reach 1,000 points, 500 rebounds and 300 assists. Buford's current totals are 1,657/532/307.
• Buford scored a career high 28 points for the Buckeyes, improving his career total to 1,657, which is eighth all-time in Ohio State career scoring. He is 99 points behind Jay Burson (1,756) for seventh place.
• Buford had nine rebounds to push his career total to 532. He is one of 17 former Buckeyes in the prestigious 1,500 point and 500 rebound club.
• Buford had four assists. He now has 50 this season and 307 for his career.
• Buford finished 5-5 from the free-throw line. The 80 percent shooter has made 23-consecutive shots from the stripe.
• Buford is on pace to become the fifth player in Ohio State history to join the 400 (made field goals) and 4,000 (minutes played) Club. After the Northwestern win, Buford has now tallied 624 made field goals and 3,857 minutes played in 120 career games (J. Diebler, D. Lighty, J. Butler and H.Williams are the other Buckeyes to achieve this feat).
• Buford connected on 5 of 7 3-point field goals. His 177 made career field goals from behind the arc are third-most in Buckeye history.
• Jared Sullinger had 17 points for the Buckeyes. It is the 11th time this season and 45th time in his career he has scored in double figures.
• With 17 points and 14 rebounds, Sullinger earned his seventh double-double of the season and 25th of his career. It is also the 12th time vs. a Big Ten opponent and second time vs. Northwestern (20/18, Ohio State def. Northwestern 67-61, 3/11/11).
• Sullinger had 14 rebounds, pushing his career total to 492.
• Deshaun Thomas finished with 16 points. It is the 24th time in his career he has scored in double figures.
• It is also the 13th-consecutive game Thomas has scored in double figures. The 13 times this season are a team high.
• Besides the season opener, Thomas has scored double figures in every game this season.
• Craft had one steal. He has 110 for his career. He has had at least one steal in all 13 games this season.
• Craft had three assists to push his season total to 75 and his career total to 253. He has had at least three in every game this season and seven games with five or more.
• Jordan Sibert had a career high with four made 3-point field goals (3 vs. Jackson State, 11/18/11).
• Sibert's 12 points were a career high.
Buckeyes win Global Sports Event
The first four games of the regular season made up the Global Sports Shootout on the Ohio State schedule. Home games vs. Wright State (W 73-43, Nov. 11), Florida (W 81-74, Nov. 15), Jackson State (W 85-41, Nov. 15) and North Florida (W 85-50, Nov. 21) made up the event. Ohio State won a similar event a year ago with a 4-0 record beating North Carolina A&T, Florida on the road, UNC Wilmington and Morehead State in the Global Sports Invitational.
Matta Looks for Another 20-Win Season
For each of the last 11 seasons, all as a head coach, Thad Matta has guided teams to at least 20 victories. Only Mark Few, among active coaches, has more consecutive 20-win seasons to start a career (12). Matta set the Ohio State record for consecutive 20-win campaigns in 2008-09 with a 22-11 record and extended it with a 34-3 campaign in 2010-11, the seventh-consecutive Ohio State season with 20+ victories. The previous record was four held by the 1960-63 teams under legendary head coach Fred Taylor. Matta also has won at least 10 Big Ten regular-season games in each of the last six seasons. That effort eclipsed Taylor's mark of 10+ league wins in each of the seasons from 1960-64. Those were during 14-game regular-season slates. The Big Ten played a 16-game schedule in Matta's first three seasons (8, 12, 15 league wins) and an 18-game schedule the last four (10, 10, 14, 16). Ohio State also is the two-time defending Big Ten regular-season champion. The last time the Buckeyes won three or more consecutive titles was from 1960-64, a string of five-consecutive conference crowns.
400 And 4,000 Club
Senior William Buford has scored 624 career field goals and logged 3,857 career minutes in 120 games. He is on pace to join a small group of former Buckeyes with more than 400 field goals and 4,000 minutes played. David Lighty was added to an exclusive club following the game vs. Illinois Jan. 22, 2011. The former Buckeye reached 4,000 minutes played with more than 400 field goals in the Illinois win in Champaign. Lighty made 516 career field goals and logged 4,582 career minutes during his 157-game career. Lighty's classmate Jon Diebler had 473 made baskets (374 of which are 3s) while playing a total of 4,687 minutes in 144 games. He reached 400/4,000 with a triple and 36 minutes vs. Iowa Jan. 19.
Herb Williams and Jamar Butler also logged 4,000+ minutes at Ohio State. Williams made 834 career field goals over 114 games and 4,216 minutes. Butler connected on 420 FGs (242 3FGs) over 139 games and 4,213 minutes played.
Buford Joins Turner, Jackson, Lighty
Evan Turner (1,517 pts., 682 rebs., 414 asts.) became just the second player in recorded history to reach 1,000 points, 500 rebounds and 300 assists with eight helpers vs. Northwestern Jan. 19, 2010. Jim Jackson was the only other Buckeye to do so with 1,785 career points, 552 career rebounds and 372 career assists from 1990-92. David Lighty joined the duo last season. He finished with 1,458 points, 577 rebounds and 374 assists to his credit. Only 22 players in Ohio State history have scored more than 1,000 points and collected 500+ rebounds. Lighty was added to the list with five rebounds vs. Iowa Jan. 19. William Buford currently has 1,657 points, 532 rebounds and 307 assists. He handed out four assists vs. Miami (Ohio) to join the quartet.
Double Digit 3s
Ohio State has made 10 or more 3-pointers in a game 79 times since the shot was instituted for the 1986-87 season. The Buckeyes are 68-11 in those games after knocking down 10-of-20 treys vs. Northwestern Dec. 28. Opponents have made double-digit 3s 91 times and are 36-55 in those games vs. the Buckeyes. Matta's Ohio State teams are 53-9 when making 10 or more 3s in a game. Opponents are 8-29 against Matta-coached teams when making 10 or more treys.
Buford on Preseason List for 2012 Lowe's Senior CLASS Award
Senior William Buford follows David Lighty (2011) as a candidate for the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award in 2012. Lighty was among the Top 10 finalists a year ago. Buford is one of 30 senior men's college basketball student-athletes on the 2012 preseason list. The field will be narrowed to 10 finalists midway through the 2011-12 regular season. The finalists, recognized for excellence in community, classroom, character and competition, will travel to the 2012 Final Four in New Orleans, where the winner will be announced.
Sullinger Earns All-America Honors
The Associated Press is the latest (Oct. 31) to select Ohio State sophomore Jared Sullinger as a 2011-12 preseason first team All-American. The Columbus, Ohio, native was a 2011 All-American as well after averaging 17 points and 10 rebounds as a rookie. Those numbers helped earn Sullinger the 2011 National Freshman of the Year award following Ohio State's 34-3 overall record a year ago.
Big Ten Media Pick Buckeyes, Sullinger
Ohio State was picked as the preseason favorite to win the league regular-season title by a vote of the conference media (Oct. 27). Sophomore Jared Sullinger also was tabbed as the favorite to earn conference player-of-the-year accolades. He also was selected to represent Ohio State on the preseason all-conference squad. Ohio State has won back-to-back league titles and is in position to win a third-consecutive title for the first time since the Buckeyes won five-consecutive titles from 1960-64. The last Buckeye to enter the season as the player of the year selection was guard Scoonie Penn before the 1999-2000 campaign.
Jent Returns to Ohio State Sideline
Chris Jent left the professional ranks to return to his alma mater as an assistant basketball coach. Jent, who played and coached at the NBA level, played for the Buckeyes from 1988-92 and coached most recently for the Cleveland Cavaliers. As an Ohio State player, he helped the Buckeyes to back-to-back Big Ten titles and three-consecutive appearances in the NCAA tournament. He spent 10 seasons in the professional ranks overseas, in the CBA and NBA. He was an assistant and interim head coach with the Orlando Magic before most recently coaching with the Cavaliers.
2011-12 Schedule Among Best Nationally
Several Ohio State non-conference games have garnered national attention this season there is more to come in the always rugged Big Ten slate of 18 regular-season contests. Ohio State faced Florida (W 81-74, 11/15/11) and Duke (W 85-63, 11/29/11) at Value City Arena with key non-league games at Kansas (L 78-67, 12/10/11) and South Carolina (W 74-66, 12/17/11). With the addition of Nebraska to the conference schedule, league teams will play seven foes twice and four teams once during regular-season play. Ohio State plays host to Penn State and Purdue and will travel to Iowa and Minnesota. The rest of the league will compete against the Buckeyes both home and away.
Buford Working on Record Season
William Buford is the lone senior on the Ohio State roster this season. In fact, he is just one of two upperclassmen and the only player with more than a year of experience in an Ohio State uniform. After transfer Evan Ravenel, who transferred to Ohio State from Boston College and sat out the 2010-11 campaign, there are 11 freshmen (5) and sophomores (6) on the Ohio State roster. Buford has 1,657 career points over 120 career games (13.8 ppg.). Dennis Hopson (1984-87) is the all-time leading scorer in Ohio State history with 2,096 points over 125 career games played (16.8 ppg.). Buford is currently No. 8 spot on the Ohio State all-time scoring list.
Paulus Leaves Navy to Work for Matta
Greg Paulus, who served as an assistant coach at Navy during the 2010-11 season, joined the Buckeyes last May to handle the program's video needs. He replaced Kevin Kuwik, who left Thad Matta's staff to become an assistant coach at Dayton. Paulus played basketball at Duke from 2006-09 and then a year of football at Syracuse.
Titles Mounting for Matta, Buckeyes
Thad Matta's teams have won four Big Ten regular-season titles and three league tournament crowns during his seven-year tenure at Ohio State. Ohio State has won each of the last two regular-season and tournament titles. The Buckeyes have not posted three-consecutive Big Ten Conference crowns since winning a conference record five-consecutive titles from 1960-64 under the direction of head coach Fred Taylor. Taylor led Ohio State to seven league championships from 1959-76. Harold G. Olson win five Big Ten titles as coach between 1923-46.
Buckeyes Return Plenty
Despite the loss of three senior starters, the Buckeyes return the majority of the offensive production from a year ago. Seven 2010-11 letterwinners return nearly 63 percent of the team's points (1,783 of 2,854), rebounds (805 of 1,277), assists 370 of 587 and steals (169 of 263) entering this season. Five incoming freshmen along with increased roles of the returning Buckeyes will attempt to make up for the losses of David Lighty (12.1 ppg.), Jon Diebler (12.6 ppg.) and Dallas Lauderdale (4.2 ppg, 54 total blocks). Four of the top six offensive players return in Jared Sullinger (17.2 ppg.), William Buford (14.4 ppg.), Deshaun Thomas (7.5 ppg.) and Aaron Craft (6.9 ppg.). Sullinger added 10.2 rebounds a game while Buford tallied 61 3-pointers while making 84 percent of his foul shots (59-70). Craft led the team in assists (177) and steals (73). Thomas was solid off the bench a year ago and is expected to have an increased role both offensively and defensively this year.
Scott, Williams Add to Ohio State's 17-Player McDonald's List
Ohio State incoming freshmen Shannon Scott and Amir Williams were selected Feb. 10, 2011 to represent the East (Scott) and West (Williams) teams in the 2011 McDonald's All-America game. The game was played March 30 at the United Center in Chicago. Scott led both teams with five steals. The East won the game 111-96. Scott also had four points, two rebounds and two assists over 12 minutes. Williams had six points, three rebounds and a steal in 11 minutes for the West squad. The Buckeyes will have five All-America game participants on their roster in 2011-12 in Jared Sullinger (2010), Deshaun Thomas (2010), William Buford (2008), Scott and Williams. Four McDonald's All-Americans were a part of Ohio State's 2006-07 squad that finished 35-4 overall, 15-1 in Big Ten Conference play, won the league regular-season title outright and played for the NCAA national title vs. Florida in April of 2007. Ivan Harris (2003), Greg Oden (2006), Mike Conley Jr. (2006) and Daequan Cook (2006), all former McDonald's All-Americans, played for the Buckeyes in 2006-07. Previously, B.J. Mullens (2008), Kosta Koufos (2007), Clark Kellogg (1979), Perry Carter (1987), Treg Lee (1987), Jim Jackson (1989), Charles Macon (1992) and Greg Simpson (1992) all played for Ohio State after playing in the McDonald's All-America game before joining the Ohio State program, a total of 17 all-time.
Five Mr. Basketball Honorees on Ohio State Roster
Ohio State's contains four players who have combined to win five Mr. Basketball awards in their respective home states. Jared Sullinger leads the team with two Mr. Ohio Basketball accolades, achieving the distinction both in 2009 and 2010, while playing at Northland High School. Deshaun Thomas, a native Fort Wayne, Ind., and Bishop Luers High School, captured Mr. Indiana Basketball in 2010. Senior William Buford claimed 2008 Mr. Ohio Basketball with his performance at now-closed Libbey High School in Toledo. Freshman Shannon Scott brings the recognition of being named 2011 Mr. Georgia Basketball to Columbus after starring at Milton High School in Alpharetta, Ga. Freshman Amir Williams finished third in the 2011 Mr. Michigan Basketball voting.