Jody Victor : Ohio State (18-9, 8-8) begins their final week of the regular season at Iowa tonight. The game is in the Carver-Hawkeye Arena and will air at 9 p.m. on the Big Ten Network.
Iowa leads the all-time series vs. Ohio State 73-64. Ohio State has won three of the last four games in the series and Thad Matta is 4-4 vs. the Hawkeyes in his five seasons in Columbus. Iowa is 47-19 in Iowa City while the Buckeyes hold the edge in Columbus 43-25 after a 68-65 victory Dec. 31, 2008, to open the current Big Ten Conference season. No current Ohio State player has faced the Hawkeyes more than three times. Jon Diebler leads the Buckeyes veterans with an average of 11.0 points a game in the Iowa series. His seven made 3s vs. the Hawkeyes all came in the earlier meeting this season when he knocked down 7-of-10 treys in Columbus. Freshman William Buford made his series debut for Ohio State with 16 points and five rebounds.
In addition to being a candidate for 2009 Big Ten Player of the Year, sophomore Evan Turner is among 15 finalists nationally for the 2009 Oscar Robertson Trophy, the U.S. Basketball Writers Association announced last week. Turner is the lone Big Ten player of the USBWA finalists. The Oscar Robertson Trophy is voted on by the entire membership of the association, which consists of nearly 800 journalists. The ballot was distributed to the membership Monday. The Oscar Robertson Trophy is awarded to the USBWA's Player of the Year. It is the nation's oldest award and the only one named after a former player. The legendary Oscar Robertson was the USBWA's first player of the year in 1959. The USBWA renamed its player of the year award the Oscar Robertson Trophy in 1998.
Ohio State head coach Thad Matta coached his 300th career game when the Buckeyes took on Purdue Feb. 28 in West Lafayette, Matta is 225-75 overall in nine seasons as a head coach, which includes one season at Butler, three at Xavier and five at Ohio State.