No. 8 Buckeyes Fall 63-60 in Home Finale to No. 16 Wisconsin

Jody Victor : Here’s some Buckeye basketball news from and

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) – Jared Berggren scored Wisconsin’s final five points – including a go-ahead 3-pointer with 31 seconds left – and the 16th-ranked Badgers beat No. 8 Ohio State 63-60 on Sunday.

Jordan Taylor had 19 points and Ryan Evans 10 for the Badgers (21-8, 10-6 Big Ten), who made up for an earlier loss at home to the Buckeyes.

With Ohio State (23-6, 11-5) up by a point, Berggren swished a shot from beyond the arc on the left wing. When the Buckeyes called timeout to set up a play, the Badgers and a small contingent of fans celebrated.

Deshaun Thomas had 23 points for Ohio State. William Buford had 15 and Aaron Craft 13.

The loss gave Michigan State a share of the Big Ten title.

The Badgers improved to 6-3 in Big Ten road games and 9-4 overall away from Kohl Center. Since Bo Ryan took over as head coach, Wisconsin has the most road wins and best road winning percentage among all Big Ten teams (62-60, .508).

Still, they had lost their last two road games and appeared to be in danger of stretching that skid until Berggren’s late shots.

Ohio State broke free from a halftime stalemate to build a small lead midway through the second half.

Trailing 42-41, Jared Sullinger – averaging more than 17 points a game but limited to just eight by the Badgers’ stifling defense – retrieved his own miss and put it back in.

Craft then forced a turnover by Taylor and Buford hit a finger roll in transition and was fouled for a three-point play. Evans then missed a jumper under pressure and Buford was fouled by Mike Bruesewitz, his fourth. Buford hit both shots.

Rob Wilson misfired on a 3 for the Badgers and Craft made a fallaway 12-foot jumper in the lane to expand the lead to 50-42 with 8:14 remaining.

But the Badgers weren’t going away.

Berggren’s 3 bounced high off the iron before falling through and Taylor got open for another 3. After a Buford miss, an odd sequence pulled the Badgers within a point. Berggren missed a 3 and Evans grabbed the rebound, tossing a pass as he was going out of bounds that was deflected by an Ohio State player to Gasser for a bank shot to pull Wisconsin to 51-50 with 4:27 left.

Taylor and Craft traded buckets before Craft fouled Taylor late in the shot clock and he hit both shots with 2:53 left to put Wisconsin on top 54-53.

Sullinger muscled in a spinning shot from the block over Berggren with 46 seconds left. But Berggren popped out and hit a wide-open 3 with 31 seconds remaining for a 61-59 lead.

After a timeout, Ohio State settled for a Thomas jumper from the top of the key but Evans closed fast in defending the shot and caused him to double clutch it. Berggren grabbed the rebound after the ball kicked off the back of the iron and was fouled. He hit both free throws with 14.2 seconds left to push the lead to four.

Craft hit a late free throw to close the scoring.

The Badgers played their usual gritty defense – they came in leading the nation in points allowed at just 51.7 per game. But they also had just seven turnovers and held their own on the boards.

The teams were deadlocked at 29 after a strange opening 20 minutes in which the Buckeyes shot over 70 percent most of the way – they missed their last six shots from the field to finish at 55 percent – yet could not pull away. The biggest culprit was their own mistakes with the ball. They had 10 turnovers, twice as many as the Badgers, who shot 39 percent.

The turnover total matched their highest in a half all season. The first time occurred during a 74-71 loss at Indiana on Dec. 31.

In their 58-52 loss at home to Ohio State on Feb. 4, the Badgers were just 5 of 27 on 3-pointers. But in the rematch they were 8 of 21 – including the pivotal shot of the game.

Go Bucks!!!

Jody Victor

Buckeyes In The News

Jody Victor: Here’s some great Buckeye basketball news from and

Sullinger, Buford Closing on 600 Rebounds
Jared Sullinger and William Buford each are within 11 rebounds of reaching 600 for their respective careers. Sullinger, in 60 games played, has 590 boards for an average of 9.8 a game. Buford has played 131 games and has 589 rebounds (4.5 rpg). A total of 17 Ohio State players have recorded 600 or more rebounds in their careers. Jerry Lucas owns the Ohio State record with 1,411 career rebounds over three seasons (1960-62). The last player to reach 600 as a Buckeye was Evan Turner with 683 from 2008-10.

USBWA Names Sullinger to Watch List
The United States Basketball Writers Association named Jared Sullinger to a list of 20 student-athletes in consideration for the 2012 Oscar Robertson Trophy, given annually to the organization’s national player of the year honoree. The award will be presented March 30 in New Orleans. The USBWA selected Sullinger as its Wayman Tisdale Award winner in 2011. The award recognizes the national freshman of the year.

Sullinger Paces Buckeyes at Home
Sophomore Jared Sullinger averages a double-double in games played this season in Columbus. He contributes a team-leading 17.4 points and 10.2 rebounds a game on Ohio State’s home court. He also is leading the regulars by scoring on 55 percent of his shots from the field (103-186). Senior William Buford averages 15.6 points and has made 88 percent of his foul shots on familiar turf (44-50). Sophomore Deshaun Thomas is the third Buckeyes averaging double figures at home with 13.4 points per game. Ohio State is outscoring opponents by 23.3 points per game with an 8.2 rebounds per game advantage in Columbus.

Academics and Athletic Awards for Craft
Sophomore Aaron Craft was selected to the Academic All-District 5 First Team Feb. 2. He now advances to the Capital One Academic All-America Team ballot, where first-, second- and third-team Academic All-America honorees will be selected later this month. Craft is majoring in excercise science (pre-med) with a GPA of 3.89. Craft also is among 11 remaining candidates for the Bob Cousy Award after the list was trimmed from an initial pool of 60 candidates. The annual honor, named for Hall of Famer and former Boston Celtic Bob Cousy, recognizes the top point guards in college basketball. This current list of candidates will be narrowed down to the final five by March 1. Craft currently leads the Buckeyes in assists (116) and steals (54).

Matta Earns Another 20-Win Season
For each of the last 12 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 (13). Matta set the Ohio State record for consecutive 20-win campaigns in 2008-09 with a 22-11 record and extended it this year (21-4), the eighth-consecutive Ohio State season with 20+ victories. The previous record was four held by the 1960-63 teams under legendary head coach Fred Taylor. The Buckeyes also own the second-longest streak of 20-win seasons (8) in Big Ten history. Illinois owns the record with nine from (1983-1991). 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 five (10, 10, 14, 16, 9). Ohio State 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.

Ten NCAA men’s basketball student-athletes who excel both on and off the court were selected as finalists for the 2011-12 Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence – community, classroom, character and competition. An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School®, the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities. The winner of the fan vote will be announced at the 2012 Final Four in New Orleans. To vote for Buford visit
Buford Reaches 100 Wins as a Buckeye
Senior William Buford reached career win No. 100 as a Buckeye at Iowa Jan. 7. David Lighty (2007-11) holds the Ohio State record for wins with 129. Walk-ons Mark Titus and Danny Peters were part of Ohio State’s program for 110 victories over their careers (2007-10). The four-year record for victories by scholarship players was originally set by Jamar Butler and Matt Terwilliger from 2005-08 with 105. The 2009 team had 107 wins from 2006-09 but there were no four-year seniors on that squad.
Wins    Seniors    Yr.-by-Yr.
129    David Lighty (2007-2011)    35,24,7,29,34
110    Danny Peters, Mark Titus (2007-10)    35,24,22,29
109    Jon Diebler, Dallas Lauderdale (2008-11)    24,22,29,34
107    None (2006-09)    26,35,24,22
106    William Buford (2009-12)    22,29,34,21    105    Jamar Butler, Matt Terwilliger (2005-08)    20,26,35,24

Go Bucks!!!

Jody Victor

Ohio State Begins Road Stretch at Minnesota Tonight

Jody Victor®: Here’s some great Buckeye basketball news from and

No. 6 Ohio State Buckeyes (21-4, 9-3) at Minnesota Golden Gophers (17-8, 5-7)
Date: Feb. 14, 2012
Williams Arena (14,625)
Game Time: 9 p.m. ET
Television: ESPN
Talent: Mike Tirico (play-by-play), Dan Dakich (expert analysis), Samantha Steele (Sideline)
Radio: OSU-IMG Sports Network (56 stations)
Satellite Radio: Sirius-91, XM-91        
Local Radio: WBNS FM-97.1 AM-1460
Radio Talent: Paul Keels (play-by-play), Ron Stokes (expert analysis)

Ohio State VS. Minnesota
Ohio State owns a 78-55 advantage in games played in the Minnesota series and is 29-37 in Minneapolis. When Ohio State is ranked in the Associated Press poll, the Buckeyes are 24-3 vs. the Golden Gophers. Ohio State has won 11 of the last 12 and each of the last four games when ranked vs. Minnesota. Overall, Ohio State has won five of the last six games and four consecutive meetings vs. Minnesota. William Buford averages 13.9 points in seven career meetings vs. Minnesota. Jared Sullinger scored 33 points (16.5 ppg.) and grabbed 25 rebounds (12.5 rpg.) in two games last year in the Minnesota series.

The Buckeyes in the Big Ten
The Buckeyes rank No. 2 in both scoring offense (75.8 ppg.) and scoring defense (56.7 ppg.) after a 21-4 overall start. Ohio State’s scoring margin of 19.1 ppg. leads the league while the .482 field goal shooting pct. rates in the No. 2 spot. Led by Jared Sullinger, Ohio State is among the Top 2 teams in rebounding offense (36.7 rpg., No. 2) and defense (29.6 rpg., No. 2). Overall, the Buckeyes are No. 2 in rebound margin (+7.1 rpg.). Behind Aaron Craft, Ohio State is No. 1 in turnover margin (+5.4).

Ohio State vs. the Big Ten
Ohio State is 733-665 vs. current members of the Big Ten Conference. The Buckeyes are playing their 100th season of Big Ten Basketball this season.

Go Bucks!!!

Jody Victor®

Boilermakers Battle Buckeyes in Lone Meeting Tonight

Jody Victor: Here’s some great Buckeye basketball news from and

No. 3 Ohio State Buckeyes (20-3, 8-2) vs. the Purdue Boilermakers (15-8, 5-5)
Date: Feb. 7, 2012
Value City Arena (18,809)
Game Time: 9 p.m. ET
Television: ESPN
Talent: Mike Tirico (play-by-play); Dan Dakich (expert analysis); Samantha Steele (Sideline)
Radio: OSU-IMG Sports Network (56 stations)
Satellite Radio: Sirius-91 , XM-91        
Local Radio: WBNS FM-97.1 AM-1460

The Buckeyes vs. The Ranked
Ohio State leads the nation in wins vs. opponents ranked among the Top 25 with five victories in seven tries this season. The Buckeyes own wins vs. No. 7 Florida, No. 3 Duke, No. 7 Indiana,  No. 20 Michigan and No. 19 Wisconsin. Losses have come to No. 13 Kansas and No. 13 Indiana, both on the road. The Buckeyes have five players, all starters, averaging in double figures in games vs. ranked opponents. Jared Sullinger leads with 17.5 ppg. He is joined by William Buford (15.0 ppg.), Deshaun Thomas (13.7 ppg.), Aaron Craft (10.9 ppg.) and Lenzelle Smith Jr. (10.3 ppg.). Sullinger (7.8 rebounds per game) and Smith Jr. (5.9 rpg.) lead the team on the glass. The Buckeyes outscore ranked foes by 7.4 points per game and own the edge on the boards by 3.0 rpg. Notre Dame also has five wins vs. Top 25 teams this season.

The Buckeyes in the Big Ten
The Buckeyes rank No. 2 in both scoring offense (76.5 ppg.) and scoring defense (55.4 ppg.) after a 20-3 overall start. Ohio State’s scoring margin of 21.0 ppg. leads the league while the .489 field goal shooting pct. rates in the No. 2 spot. Led by Jared Sullinger, Ohio State is among the Top 2 teams in rebounding offense (37.0 rpg., No. 2) and defense (29.6 rpg., No. 2). Overall, the Buckeyes are No. 2 in rebound margin (+7.5 rpg.). Behind Aaron Craft, Ohio State is No. 2 in assists (16.0 apg.), No. 1 in turnover margin (+6.0) and No. 2 in steals (8.0 spg.) on the year among Big Ten teams.

Ohio State vs. Purdue
Purdue is 83-76 all-time in games vs. Ohio State, but the Buckeyes own the edge in Columbus 51-28. When Ohio State is ranked nationally in the Associated Press Top 25 poll, the Buckeyes are 22-4 against the Boilermakers. Ohio State enters the game today ranked No. 3 nationally. Purdue is unranked. The last time Ohio State lost to an unranked Purdue squad was March 6, 1991, a 72-67 setback for the then-No. 2 Buckeyes. The teams have split the last eight overall meetings, 4-all. William Buford, Ohio State’s lone senior, averages 14.1 points a game in seven career meetings with the Boilermakers. He has scored 99 points and grabbed 33 rebounds (4.7 rpg.) in the series. He has scored on 55 percent from the field (36-66) and 58 percent from long range (12-21) while knocking down 15 of 17 foul shots (.882). Jared Sullinger averaged 21.0 points and 6.5 rebounds in two games vs. the Boilermakers last season. He made 16 of 26 shots from the field (.615) and 9 of 12 foul shots (.750). Purdue is 1-7 vs. Ohio State at Value City Arena. Ohio State is 67-18 vs. Big Ten foes at VCA.               

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.

Go Bucks!!!

Jody Victor