Well Buckeye Nation that was a tough on to lose on Tuesday night. I know I was very upset at the no call in overtime, and I know most of you were as well from the reactions on Twitter. Some of us actually ending up in Twitter Jail because of our reactions. I’m normally not one to complain about officiating but there were a lot of missed calls in this game on both sides. The most crucial being all the contact that Aaron Craft received running the ball down court and then getting mugged at the rim by Tim Hardaway Jr. who played well above his means. But the Buckeyes played very well and I was very impressed with them, as you should be as well. This was a big test for this team because they haven’t played well on the road this season. My only gripe about the game besides the officials swallowing their whistles at times was that Deshaun Thomas (DT) didn’t shoot the ball at all in overtime. The leading scorer in the B1G not touching the ball was head scratching to say the least. Plus Mike Tirico shouldn’t have been calling this game, he lives in Ann Arbor and he always seems to be biased towards TTUN. Any ways enough about that game, just thinking about it makes me want to drive to the Detroit Zoo jump in the wolverine cage, punch the animal in its face and make a hat out of its fur. So on to the next one.
Sunday the Buckeyes get to take on the Nation’s #1 ranked team, the Indiana Hoosiers (20-2, 8-1 B1G). I still don’t know exactly what the hell a Hoosier is besides, the fact that it’s the term that people from Indiana call themselves. The game is Sunday on CBS at 1:00 PM so at least we will have some decent announcers, although I miss Gus Johnson calling games on CBS. It’s a home game and it should be a good game, with a lot of great individual matchups to watch. Craft vs. Victor Oladipo will be the best matchup to watch in my mind. These two have great defense and are good at capitalizing on the other team’s mistakes. Oladipo is longer than Craft is and that could bring about some problems. I don’t know how often this matchup will take place because of Oladipo’s size, so I see Lenzelle Smith Jr. taking on this responsibility. Cody Zeller is going to be a big problem for the Buckeyes to deal with. Amir Williams and Evan Ravenel are going to have to play tough defense and try to deny Zeller the ball. Another matchup that is going to be exciting to watch is Indiana’s Christian Watford versus DT. The Buckeyes matured Tuesday night not relying on Thomas the whole game and sharing the basketball and I hope Sunday it’s the same.
Mully’s Key’s to Victory.
Craft-y Defense. This is a key every game, Craft is our best defensive player and I believe the rest of the team feeds off of his intensity. So the team needs to step up and play consistent defense again.
Clean up the Boards. Indiana is one of the best rebounding teams in the country, thanks to Zeller and Watford. So the guys on the inside are going to have to box out those two and everyone is going to have to chase down long rebounds as well. Because the Hoosiers like to shoot the three ball as well.
Let IU get LaQuainted with LaQuinton. LaQuinton Ross has played great for the Buckeyes the last few games, especially on Tuesday night he was a spark off the bench scoring 16 points. If he has another big game I like our chances on Sunday.
I predict a very close game, with Ohio State squeaking out a victory only if they come out and they are ready to play. Indiana is not going to want to lose their #1 ranking so they are going to come to play as hard as they can. I hope Mattaritaville and the student section are ready to bring the noise, and that they’re going to keep Value City Arena rocking all game long. The crowd could have a big impact on the game, and the team can always use your help.
I am anxious to see how the Buckeyes will respond after a controversial loss in Ann Arbor, because the next few games are going to be a rough stretch. With three of the next 4 games against Wisconsin (16-7, 7-3 B1G), #18 Minnesota (17-6, 5-5 B1G) and #12 Michigan State University (19-4, 8-2 B1G). MSU and Minnesota are both home games but we have to travel to Wisconsin. These are all tough games for the Buckeyes so I hope they are ready to lace up their shoes.
Until Next week Buckeye Faithful, stay safe and always remember MUCK FICHIGAN!