Wildcats claw Bucks 83-72 – Story of 02-24-77 game (link from the Lantern)


Tex Winter was Northwestern’s coach.

It was Eldon Miller’s 1st season as Buckeye head coach.

Jerry Marifke had 20 points and Tony Allen 18.

Marifke was subbing for Wildcat star Billy McKinney, who was out of the game with an injury.

Standout line from the article: “The Wildcats won the game at the free throw line…”


Kelvin Ransey, in what was an excellent freshman season, had 21 points for Ohio State and Jim Ellinghausen scored 18.

The Buckeyes had lost every home game that season up until that point but defeated Wisconsin in OT inside St. John Arena in the very next game to provide Buckeyes 1st year head coach Eldon Miller.

————— _————-

By goodness, Hell must have frozen over today because Northwestern defeated Ohio State in Columbus.

Congratulations to the Northwestern Wildcats.



St. John Arena, February 1990 Buckeye game hosting Louisville propelled Ohio State to NCAA Tournament

The 1989-1990 season was Buckeye basketball all time great Jimmy Jackson’s freshman season in a Scarlet & Gray uniform.

Jackson, Mark Baker, Jamaal Brown and Perry Carter lead their team to the NCAA tournament that season where eight seed Ohio State won a one point game, 84-83, in overtime over Providence in the opening round and then lost a 76-65 2nd round contest to a #2 ranked UNLV, which featured players of the quality of Larry (Grandmama) Johnson, Stacey (Plastic Man) Augmon, and Greg Anthony, who is now a CBS employed basketball analyst. All three of those guys were quality NBA players.

The Buckeyes competed strong in that game but in the end couldn’t hang with the Runnin’s Rebels, the eventual NCAA national champions, after they defeated Duke in championship game 103-73.

I bring this particular season up for it’s similarities, in some respects, to the current challenge this season’s Ohio State team finds itself in.

Midway through the 1989-1990 conference season Ohio State was 8-9 overall and just 4-5 in conference and were in the middle of four game losing streak before defeating Northwestern inside St. John Arena 101-77.

The term “bracketology” wasn’t part of hoops tournament conversation until the mid 1990s but if it was the Buckeyes would have been located on the lower side of the dreaded March Madness “bubble”.

After Northwestern, Ohio State hosted 15-3 & 10th ranked Louisville in St. John Arena on February 4th, 1990.


The Buckeyes won it 91-88 in OT and went on to be invited to the 1990 NCAA Tournament.

That Ohio State win over Louisville was credited with changing the trajectory of the Buckeyes’ season from one destined for the NIT to one who earned it’s way into the Big Dance with a 17-13 overall record that was, also, 10-8 in conference.

There are, of course, differences between Ohio State’s current team and the 1989-1990 squad. The current Buckeyes stand at 12-7 overall and 2-4 in conference, but are on a two game winning streak where three of it’s next four games will be played on home court. All four of those teams in that vein are listed higher in the conference standings with the culmination a home contest against current conference leader, the 5-1 Maryland Terrapins.

Big Ten Standings (January 21, 2017)


The essential fact to know about about this season’s Buckeyes is that it isn’t even on the March Madness “Bubble”

But, like the 1989-1990 team, if it wins inside this quartet of contests it can start to show up on such lists.

Three wins and one loss would get Ohio State to .500 in conference with a 5-5 record.

Starting with Sunday’s game with visiting Northwestern, those four games come and go quickly. Three days separate all four crucial matchups.

(H) Northwestern on the 22nd || (H) Minnesota, the 25th || (A) Iowa, the 28th || (H) Maryland, the 31st.

I’m rooting for Ohio State to play hard and well all four games. Sometimes things don’t go your way. But it helps to make your breaks.

For example, the 1989-1990 team was down 17 points early in the 2nd half after giving up a 10-2 run to the Cardinals. However, they didn’t give up, and finally tied the score won it in overtime.

Ohio State’s defense turned up the intensity and that was the key to the win. PG Mark Baker (15 pts/5 steals), starting his third game in a row, and Perry Carter (20 pts/13 rbs) and Treg Lee (Ten 2nd half pts), supported Jimmy Jackson’s 21 points, who, with 16 seconds left in OT, tipped in an Alex Davis baseline jump shot to provide the final three point difference.

Those Buckeyes didn’t give up despite being down by such a large margin.

The 2016-2017 Ohio State team will see good things happen for it, too, if it  refuses to give in to the challenges it faces.

Go Buckeyes! Beat Northwestern!

___________ _____________


Ohio State 1989-90 season schedule and results

W: 17, L: 13; Big Ten: 10-8/6th (H: 12-2, A: 3-6, N: 2-5)

W/L Opp.  OSU(#)-OPP(#)

11/15 L !vs. DePaul   53-71

11/27 W Mount St. Mary’s   102-63

12/1 L #vs. N.C. St. 54-68(19)

12/2 L #vs. Oklahoma State  59-81(23)

12/9 W American University 74-64

12/18 W Robert Morris 78-51 12/21

W South Carolina 59-46

12/27 L %vs. LaSalle 62-74(20)

12/28 W %vs. New Orleans 74-66

1/4 W Indiana 69-67(9)

1/6 W @Iowa 79-73(20)

1/11 L @Michigan State 68-78

1/13 W Wisconsin  68-53

1/18 L @Michigan  88-90

1/20 L @Minnesota  78-83(22)

1/25 L Purdue 66-78(13)

1/27 L @Illinois 81-92(10)

2/1 W Northwestern 101-77

2/4 W Louisville (ot)  91-88(10)

2/8 W Iowa  98-80

2/10 L Michigan State  75-84(23)

2/15 W @Wisconsin  68-58

2/18 W Michigan   64-61(5)

2/24 L @Purdue  70-75(9)

2/26 W Illinois  86-80(19)

3/3 W @Northwestern  95-86 3/8

L @Indiana  66-77

3/10 W Minnesota   93-83(19)

3/15 W *vs. Providence (ot)   84-83

3/17 L *vs. UNLV  65-76(2) (#) Indicates AP ranking

! Preseason NIT,
# Tournament of Champions, Charlotte, N.C. % Sugar Bowl Classic, New Orleans, La. *NCAA 1st and 2nd Rounds, Salt Lake City

_________________ __________________

Photo by Rebecca Mugler/The Lantern

Picture caption – OSU junior center, Perry Carter, puts pressure on Louisville’s LaBradford Smith during first half action Sunday in St. John Arena. The Buckeyes defeated the 10th ranked Cardinals 91-88 in overtime.



Ghost “Miracle in Nebraska” next morning edition – “We’re starting up a brand new day”

With 0.06 seconds left on the clock, Ohio State’s Marc Loving converts a baseline in bound pass from CJ Jackson into a layup, two points and a Buckeye win.

Photo found here: http://journalstar.com/sports/huskers/mens-basketball/ohio-state-stuns-huskers-on-last-second-layup/article_7fd6b5fb-d1bf-5a47-a9f3-c3f56bbd1da2.html

Thoughts on the 2nd win in a row by the Buckeyes. One game at a time.

  • As Marc Loving has recently stepped into his senior role this season he has really played well. I’m glad he said this:

I believe it was Marc’s way of saying “Back off. I’ve got this.” Leaders have to be willing to be unpopular if they are going to properly do their job.

For him to say that shows Marc Loving cares. Words into action, I think, by Marc.

(I’ve enjoyed Loving’s recent use of the bounce pass. Trevor Thompson got himself a nice dunk last night off of one)

  • Nebraska was without it’s 6’7, 235 pound rim protector, Ed Morrow, last night. The Buckeyes were without Keita Bates-Diop. Call it even.
  • Dave Bell came in and did his job last night. A lot has been said in recent years about the quality of coaching Ohio State provides. But when the 9th player on the team comes into a game and produces on multiple levels, that says a lot. I’ve said it before, Dave Bell is my favorite Buckeye. He’s always ready. I celebrate that. Fans have to give the coaching staff credit.
  • If you haven’t noticed, JaQuan Lyle is turning into a pretty good PG. I’ve noticed lately he’s continuously making the effort to get things done for his teammates. Driving the ball at the defense. Using his eyes to see the court. Making the pass that is there. Taking much better shots and making them. Controlled effort.

Last night I noticed the communication Lyle used to get his team to organized and move in synchronicity. Talking. Hand gestures. Being direct.

I like what JaQuan is doing for his team. In turn, he’s improving as a player.

  • How about that rip steal by Andre Wesson? A sign of things to come.
  • CJ Jackson – The pass.

Is the above statement by Thad Matta what is called basketball IQ?

  • Jae’Sean Tate. Before and during the game, Nebraska and it’s fans loaded up on reminders for him about the floor slap from last season.

Jae’Sean’s answer to all that was to ride back into Pinnacle Bank Arena and help lead his team to victory.

Tate’s late in the game recovery of a missed Cornhusker shot by diving in front of the Nebraska bench, grabbing the ball and calling a timeout was indicative of his perseverance all night.

  • Trevor Thompson likely set a record last night for games with accumulated stats of 10 points and nine rebounds. I kid, but if at the beginning of the season you would have told me a hum drum game for the Indianapolis, Indiana would have shown those numbers I would have taken that at a moment’s notice.

Thompson is capable of more. I’m concerned he might not stay and play next season at Ohio State but think he can only prosper in a large way if he does return for his senior season.

Loved his POWER DUNK from last night and everything else, too. Don’t take Trevor for granted, Buckeye fans.

  • Kam Williams – Give me the aggressive Kam Williams who finishes at the rim a couple times a game and I’m a happy guy. His shot will drop when it does but those layup attempts are something he has to take. Kam delivered on a couple versus the Cornhusker and could’ve have at leat one more that I can think of.
  • Micah Potter is going through an adjustment period to the college game but I appreciate his effort. He’s willing to put himself out there and make mistakes.  His attitude is great. He’s willing to talk to teammates on court.  I feel he’s going to be a really nice player for the Buckeyes as he matures.

Looks like Dan Dakich appreciates Micah Potter.

____________  ______________

I’ll end this by making this observation. This Buckeye team has taken all the criticism leveled at it at the beginning of the Big 10 conference season and continued to work to improve.

Ohio State has improved. This group of players deserves to feel good about itself. Last night’s win at Nebraska affirms Ohio State has made it to the corner and is ready to make a turn.

Sunday’s upcoming game against Northwestern represents the Buckeyes’ right to declare they’ve taken control of this season. Win against this 4-2, currently tied for 2nd in the conference, Wildcat team and suddenly the 2016-2017 Ohio State Men’s basketball season has the ability to turn into a Brand New Day.

“We’re starting up a brand new day” Go ahead and do that, Buckeyes!

“Paying you back for all the faith you ever had in your brain
How could it be that what you need the most
Can leave you feeling just like a ghost?


Brand New Day
How many of you people out there
Been hurt in some kind of love affair?
And how many times did you swear
That you’d never love again?
How many lonely, sleepless nights?
How many lies, how many fights?
And why would you want to
Put yourself through all of that again?
Love is pain I hear you say
Love has a cruel and bitter way of
Paying you back for all the faith you ever had in your brain
How could it be that what you need the most
Can leave you feeling just like a ghost?
You never want to feel so sad and lost again
One day you could be looking
Through an old book in rainy weather
You see a picture of her smiling at you
When you were still together
You could be walking down the street
And who should you chance to meet
But that same old smile you’ve been thinking of all day?
Why don’t we turn the clock to zero honey
I’ll sell the stock we’ll spend all the money
We’re starting up a brand new day
Turn the clock all the way back
I wonder if she’ll take me back
I’m thinking in a brand new way
Turn the clock to zero sister
You’ll never know how much I missed her
I’m starting up a brand new day
Turn the clock to zero boss
The river’s wide we’ll swim across
We’re starting up a brand new day
It could happen to you,
Just like it happened to me,
There is simply no immunity
There’s no guarantee.
I say love is such a force if you should find yourself in it
You need some time for reflection
You say, baby wait a minute, wait a minute
Wait a minute, wait a minute
Wait a minute, wait a minute
Turn the clock to zero honey
I’ll sell the stock we’ll spend all the money
We’re starting up a brand new day
Turn the clock to zero Mac
I’m begging her to take me back
I’m thinking in a brand new way
Turn the clock to zero boss
The river’s wide we’ll swim across
Starting up a brand new day
Turn the clock to zero buddy
Don’t wanna be no fuddy duddy
We’re starting up a brand new day
I’m the rhythm in your tune
I’m the sun and you’re the moon
I’m the bat and you’re the cave
You’re the beach and I’m the wave
I’m the plough and you’re the land
You’re the glove and I’m the hand
I’m the train and you’re the station
I’m the flagpole to your nation
I’m the present to your future
You’re the wound and I’m the suture
You’re the magnet to my pole
I’m the devil in your soul
You’re the pupil I’m the teacher
You’re the church and I’m the preacher
You’re the flower I’m the rain
You’re the tunnel I’m the train
Stand up all you lovers in the world
Stand up and be counted every boy and every girl
Stand up all you lovers in the world
We’re starting up a brand new day
You’re the crop to my rotation
You’re the sum of my equation
I’m the answer to your question
If you follow my suggestion
We can turn this ship around
And go up instead of down
You’re the pan and I’m the handle
You’re the flame and I’m the candle
Stand up all you lovers in the world
Stand up and be counted every boy and every girl
Stand up all you lovers in the world
We’re starting up a brand new day

Ohio State at Purdue/Sunday 3:30 game – A Popeye win is a win is a win.

I might stop watching the Ohio State women play. I viewed the @MSU game from the past week and the Buckeyes were blitzed.

Get a chance this morning to watch this @Purdue game and in the 1st quarter OSU game 3/15 from the field and trail the Boilermakers 20-6.

Buckeyes began game 0-8 from the floor. Kelsey Mitchell starts 0-5.

Now 22-6. Those Boiler shovels are active.

Tori McCoy hits a shot. Purdue 22-8. Mitchell hits a three. 1st points at 12:00 minutes in.

Buckeyes now at 34-29 by hitting 11-12 free throws in the 2nd quarter.

Buckeyes 6 points/7 turnovers in the first quarter & then 28 points/2 turnovers in the 2nd quarter.  Boilermakers lead 36-34.

Buckeyes were way more active in the 1st half. Especially around the basket. I’m enjoying seeing freshman Tori McCoy progress. She looks much more comfortable now as compared to the beginning of the season.

_______  __________

Mitchell hits an on the move two to start the 3rd quarter. Mitchell hooks up with McCoy on a long range assist at the rim. Alexa Hart is active on the glass and puts back a missed Kiara Lewis layup attempt.

Purdue guard Ashley Morrissette has the nickname “Steady Eddy Morrissette”  That’s great.

Purdue gets multiple shots in one possession and eventually ties the score at 40.

Ohio State & Purdue with matching 6 point runs to start the 3rd quarter.

Boilermakers 48 – Ohio State 47 at end of the 3rd quarter.

(Reading the post game stats I see Kelsey Mitchell made just 3-17 shots after hitting just 4-18 shots in the loss at Michigan State.  Mind boggling. But Mitchell is still making a borderline respectable .431 of her shots from the floor this season and is .363 on threes. She has taken 673 total shots this season. Almost 200 more than the next level Buckeye shot taker, Asia Doss, who has taken 477 shots.)

Tori McCoy obliterates two shot attempts by Purdue’s #10 Andreona Keys. McCoy got the 1st one pretty good from behind. The ball dropped in front of Keys. She picked it up. Dribbled once, backed up and banged into McCoy to clear space to shoot. Keys went right up with the ball again and McCoy knocked the shot with extra force that time. Messages being sent in that exchange.

This game resembles bowling. Players are both the pins and the ball. There’s a lot of flying in to the mix going on and a lot of players hitting the ground.

Another remarkable stat connected to Kelsey Mitchell. She has made 34-35 free throws in conference this season. That’s something else. A lot of edges, angles and details are part of Mitchell’s game. Not sure I have a handle on them all.

It’s a 50-50 contest with 7:42 left in the 4th. Mitchell just hit two tech free throws after Purdue’s Andreona Keys complained to the refs about the fouls not called on Tori McCoy on the plays above I just described.

Sad showing by both teams from the land of three. Both teams combined are 3-23 from beyond the stripe.

Tie game at 54 w/3:59 left.

Sierra Calhoun makes a three for the Buckeyes.

Commentator states “This game has the feel of an overtime game.”

Sierra Calhoun with a great rebound for a defensive stop by the Buckeyes. Under two. Now the Boilers ball again.

Purdue with just 18 points in 2nd half which means Buckeyes have only scored 22. A slobber-knocker type of game?

Mitchell to Cooper top of key. Mavunga seals off D in lane. Cooper ignores it. Drives and dribbles ball out of bounds. Wow. Not a good end of a possession out of the timeout.

Buckeyes put Purdue on the foul line. Dominique Oden makes one and then the second. Buckeyes 57-56. Mitchell to Mavunga under the hoops. Two points, for a 59-56 lead. Nice pass. Strong finish. Twenty seconds left in the game.

Morrissette misses a three. Ohio State ties up Purdue on rebound w/7.8 seconds left. Purdue timeout.

Doss with ball out of bounds. Mitchell picks Stephanie Mavunga’s defender at half court. Rest of Buckeyes headed away from the basket. Mavunga breaks free. Recieves the pass. All alone Mavunga hits a layup for the final score of 61-56. A road win for the Buckeyes which is always a precious commodity in the Big Ten.

A win is a win is a win.

I yam what I yam what I yam.



Michigan State at Ohio State 2nd half timeout thoughts

First timeout – Drill Buckeyes did this week after Wisconsin where they practice with no rules seems to have made a difference. Can’t look cool and play basketball hard and well, unless you’re Julius Erving.

2nd timeout – Buckeyes 44-43 – Reffing a game is an impossible task. Nick Ward gets the benefit of the call when Trevor Thompson just whacked an arm on his tip in basket. Trevor did not get the same call first half.

This is a battle till the end. Can the Buckeyes overcome. These kids need a win bad.

3rd timeout – Buckeyes 52-50 A. JaQuan Lyle is playing great on offense. B. Marc Loving is not. TOO many unforced errors. Here’s the ball, take it. He knows he can do better.

Add in game note – When in doubt, back it out. Jae’Sean – No, what was that???

4th timeout –  56-56 Buckeyes have these games where they do not handle fast breaks well. This is one of them.

5th timeout – Buckeyes 64-58 If Jae’Sean Tate makes a deep corner three late in a close game with a rival, it sure feels like a great omen for Ohio State.

In game note – On his foul on the three – Trevor Thompson – You’re really tall. Just be a threat sometimes. Unnecessary foul.

6th timeout – Buckeyes 66-60 Giving credit, T. Thompson is playing very well. Kam Williams came out as aggressive and effective as I’ve seen him at Ohio State in this level of game. Big points early. Kam, have you taken a  shot in the 2nd half? 3:57 to go. Got to have this win.

Note – Miles Bridges is out of his mind shooting the three ball this game.

Note – Nick Ward is a true beast. One of those from the Jabberwocky poem, too.

7th timeout – Buckeyes lead 69-65…1:06 left to play. Ohio State possession. Is it possible Ohio State will win this game? This possession needs to go at the rim at some point. Use the clock. Get off a good shot.

8th timeout – 20.6 left…Buckeyes lead 70-67. Someone on the Buckeyes better make free throws. Can’t allow this game to be a ‘How in the living daylights did the Buckeyes find a way to lose this one?’

9th timeout – Prayers.

Note – Kam Williams is fouled. He is the guy I want shooting these shots.

10th timeout – Make the shots. Handle the MSU transition to offense.

Kam makes one. MSU misses. Tate rebounds. Fouled. Makes one.

Buckeyes win. I’m a grown man about ready to puddle up.

Yeah for the good guys!




ghost the @ Wisconsin 2nd half “When do the wheels fall off the bus?” edition

Wisconsin starts off the 2nd half leading 45-27….

Buckeyes start off getting Trevor Thompson a shot on right block.—>Vito Brown, a Bowling Green, Ohio native, responds with a three.

Lyle misses a shot, Thompson tips but misses—>Vito Brown hits a three…51-27…

Lyle misses a three, Tate strips Nigel Hayes, Loving misses a three…got to keep giving JaQuan Lyle credit here…he’s going to the lane and kicking the ball for OPEN-OPEN-OPEN three attempts and no one is a Scarlet jersey is hitting those shots!

Wisconsin turnover…Loving to Kam Williams right of key, pump fake and rive all the way to rim for two…51-29…

Hayes is fouled by Tate…misses 1st FT & 2nd…Lyle again threatens the lane…fouled on shot attempt…Buckeyes are losing BIG but Lyle has been solid, I think…no FTs, though…inbounds, Williams curls to right FT line elbow and hits the jumper…51-31…17:07…

Buckeyes are playing this game but down 20 they look sand blasted…a powerful force has ahold of them…they can’t get away…wondering what Thad Matta and his staff had to say to them at halftime…what were the expressed objectives in the locker room to try and get back in the game?

Hit shots would be first on my list. Dig in on D the 2nd.

Happ cuts R to L diagonally across lane, catches pass on time, Trevor Thompson stays with it to get the clean block from behind…2nd time he’s done that…Trevor, also, is solid…wish for more from him…he’s had a good season…

Just saw replay of the Kam Williams successful curl jumper…he was way up in the air…no chance to get blocked…another wish, get Kam opportunities like that as much as possible…there’s a player who can make plays offensively…

Wisconsin swings ball left to right, Brown isolated on right FT elbow, drives w/Loving on his hip, and is met at the hoop by Trevor Thompson…an emphatic SWAT of that shot…

Thompson has earned respect this season…congrats Trevor!

Koenig drills a top of the key three….54-31 — 16:32…Showalter ties Lyle up…held ball…to Wisky…Koenig again w/the three…15:46—>57-31…

Definitely have to go there…Third wheel on the Buckeye bus has fallen off after those consecutive threes by Koenig…Ohio State is a brand name every one wants to take on and beat up on, if possible…you think people in Wisconsin, football and basketball fans, aren’t harking back to football beatdowns and hoop wars by and with Ohio State? Teams want to defeat the Buckeyes every single shot they have…Ohio State is huge, successful name…OSU air rifle team? Yep, they’re Buckeyes, take ’em down…Synchro swimming? Yep, take ’em down.

Buckeye hoops wants to stay on top it needs to realize there is no quarter given at all. Bring it or get stung.

Tate picks up two on left hand drive.—>Hayes scores layup and is fouled by Tate…Hayes misses the and one FT…Badgers rebound…entry pass to Happ…passes back out for re-entry try…gets it immediately from D’Mritik Trice on the bounce. Happ baseline around Thompson…Thompson is off balance, am sure he’s not wanting to get that foul, Happ with two…

Wisconsin is up 61-33….Ohio State is methodically being taken to the junk yard by the Badgers…payback, I think…

As Buckeyes bring ball up, I notice there’s no expressed assumption on court that the almost 30 point deficit can be cut down. Off court, on the Buckeye bench, the entire team and coaching staff is sitting down. Nobody’s moving. Every single player and coach has is sitting with linked hands in lap. Absorption.

These kind of games have to stop. This is exactly when all the wheels fall off the bus for me….if there’s 28 wheels on the Buckeye bus they have all fallen off onto the highway surface, even though the vehicle is only moving forward at about 12 miles an hour.

This is the @Maryland game from last season all over again. Ohio State is again doing the opposite of the Energizer Bunny.

As a fan it’s difficult in the extreme to see a team you would walk the Amazon River to watch play as though these minutes don’t matter. I saw this happen @Maryland last season. My one hope this season was not to see that happen again this season. But it has.

Williams misses a three. Buckeyes foul on other. Replay of chicken wing Ethan Happ used to get around Thompson is shown. Call that, ref!

Nigel Hayes bakes Andre Wesson for a baseline dunk. Potter hits two free throws. Hayes and Andre Wesson are talking to each other a little at their foul line spots. Hope Andre is telling him that dunk is not going to happen again.

Ilkainen with a three.—>Lyle to Potter from behind the three line…Potter immediately back to Lyle…Three for JaQuan…good hoops play…Showalter strips Lyle…

Wisconsin 66-35 w/12:56 left. Ilkainen w/another three. Ilkainen’s shot unfolds like a crane heading from his hand to the basket.

Potter answers with a three. He and Ilkainen enjoy some friendly anything you can do I can do better banter heading back up the floor.

Moments like that I enjoy about the players, despite the huge Badger lead. It humanizes the players. Really, they are they just kids on the playground. Only the asphalt is wood and there are 15,000 people in the park watching.

Potter blocks a Badger layup out of bounds.

ESPN shows Nigel Hayes mom, Talaya, sitting in the stands. There’s a lady who dislikes Ohio State and, I think, Thad Matta. I don’t know the entire story but whatever hard feelings were accumulated came through the recruiting process.

Here’s part of how Nigel Hayes ended up at Wisconsin: https://sconniesportstalk.com/2016/03/10/nigel-hayes-family/


Note: Nigel’s brother, Kenny, was a member of the Ohio State football team before ending up at the University of Toledo. The reason why is online.

Showalter with two. Loving is stripped by Khalil Iverson, a late developing player from Ohio who I enjoyed keeping an eye on at Delaware Hayes, HS.

Iverson passes to Showalter who alley oops back to Iverson for a crowd pleasing dunk.

The spare tire has now even fallen off the Buckeye bus. Iverson can fly. Badgers 73-41 and there is still 10:56 left to play. 32 points? I can’t fathom it.

At least Thad is now standing up in the bench area. Everyone else over there is still in the same position.

Kam Williams hits another FT line elbow jumper.

Think I’m just going to watch now. There aren’t any wheels left, anyway.

Get ready for Michigan State in the Schott.

Let’s see if we can get a mechanic to put some of those wheels safely back on the Buckeye bus.

Go Buckeyes!


Part of the future of Ohio State basketball – Kaleb Wesson

Check this out:

ghost the @ Wisconsin 1st half “When do the wheels fall off the Ohio State bus?” edition

The first half of last night’s Ohio State at Wisconsin game featured a slow but sure skid downwards. There are more than a few reasons why the Buckeyes could not compete with the Badgers. But the simple, but mystifying, message I took as a conclusion why is Ohio State didn’t make open shots.

—  —  —  —  —  —  —  — —  —

When do the wheels fall off the Ohio State bus?

I’m at 14-7. Ethan Happ just made a left hand bank on the left block. Loving misses a shot after a diagonal, right to left, drive through the lane. Subsequently, Nigel Hayes scores in the very same spot on the next possession. Wisconsin, 16-7.

A Tate layup and a Lyle three brings the scoring deficit closer at 16-12. Hayes bricks a wide open jump shot at 45 degrees left. Lyle assists Trevor Thompson. Wisconsin 16-14.

7-0 run by Ohio State.

—This game is dialed in to a sleepwalk pace. Neither the Buckeyes or the Badgers are showing much ferocity.—

Potter blocks Happ. Delaware, Ohio native Khalil Iverson picks up the loose, shovels a pass to Huber Heights, Ohio native D’Mitrik Trice, and he slices in a three. Wisconsin 19-14. 12:37 left in the first half.

When do the wheels fall off the bus?

Just saw stat. Trice is making 53% of his three point attempts this season. Impressive.

Tate with an awkward turnover trying to pass out from under the rim. Stat. Wisconsin has nine FGs and no turnovers.

Potter thwarts Happ again at the rim. Buckeye fastbreak. Loving on the move at left half court with ball. Jackson on far side away. Loving splits two defenders in the lane, gets all the way to the rim, and finishes with his left hand.

Wisconsin 19-16. 11:35.

Deep Wisconsin three by Jordan Hill. —->Loving turnover. Wesson miss of a three, left side.

Bronson Koenig, short shot, left  lane for two.—> CJ Jackson, from Lyle, misses open three right corner.

Koenig drive right of lane for two.—>CJ Jackson, after drive and kick from Lyle, misses open rim out three, top of key.

(Lyle is doing his job as point guard. He’s finding teammates for open shots.)

Wisconsin’s Hill misses up close.—>CJ Jackson finds Williams for open three. Kam does not take it. Why? Moves left. Tries fade away, right foul line corner. Miss

Koenig pushes off in lane but Jackson is called for a foul. Laughable call.

Koenig makes two free throws. 6:54 to go. Buckeyes haven’t scored since 11:35. Score is now 28-16.

One wheel has at loosened up and is in the process of falling off the bus.

Thompson is fouled by Happ. Makes two FTs. 28-18.

Both teams still are sleepwalking through this game. Guess what I’m saying is I’d rather see the Buckeyes pushing, shoving and being pissed (although I have the benefit of knowing the final score) than being lulled to sleepy bye land by the Badgers. Wisconsin is used to doing this to teams at home. Don’t respect an opponent in any way. Sling bottles and bricks at them and hide the band aid box when blood is drawn.

Go down swinging, Buckeyes.

When does the next wheel fall off the bus?

Trice misses a foul line jumper.—->Lyle posts on left lane block, gets a entry feed from Williams, a nice new look, BTW, and score on a turnaround jumper. 6:10 left. Badgers 28-20.

Happ airballs in the lane. Why in the Land of Lincoln is ESPN showing a split screen of the game and Thad Matta? C’mon. Stop it.

Tate drives length of court, loses awareness and is picked by Happ for a turnover.

(#12 Brevin Pritzil is in for the Badgers. Isn’t he the same guy from Virginia, #5 Kyle Guy. Oh, it’s the man bun hairdo that got me.)

Loving with a block on Nigel Hayes. Tate with a block on Ethan Happ. Fading to the left, Koenig w/a right corner three. Badgers 31-20. 4:55.

Loving picks up a bounce pass turnover. Koenig drives on break & blocked by Loving at backboard. Buckeyes get two wide open shots at other end. Neither go down. Badger break at other end. Hayes fouled at rim by Loving & scores. FT goes down.

Jim Calhoun credits the Buckeyes for playing hard. Gives example of hustle on defense and blocked shot but also states Buckeyes aren’t making shots on offense. Not turning defense into offense.

Jackson drives baseline, dishes to Thompson. Iverson fouls. Trevor makes two FTs.—>Hill hits three for the Badgers. —->Thompson up fakes on block, spins to lane, left hand hook crawls around rim and falls out.——–>Koenig hits left corner three. 40-22. 3:02.

I’m busy watching the action. But a next wheel has fallen off the bus and I didn’t notice it happening.

The Hayes old fashion three, a Hill three and the Koenig three suddenly pushed the lead out to 18 from what was a 31-20 game.

Buckeyes move the ball. Loving is open left of the key and hits a three. Ohio State hasn’t hit enough of those to stay relevant in the Kohl Center in the 1st half. 40-25. 2:43.

It’s as simple as that. Start hitting open shots Buckeyes and things will get easier. Continue to miss and have troubles.

Not like Ohio State’s players can’t do it, either. Each player has played hoops his entire life. Concentrate and drain ’em.

Hayes tip in. 42-25. Tate airball bricks a three at left top of key. Bruises the backboard.

Iverson travel. Loving turnover. Throws a pass right to a Wisconsin defender while trying to get it to Trevor Thompson. Not a good look at all.

Hill three miss. Badger rebound. Happ drives & is fouled by Thompson. Happ bricks the 1st FT. (Didn’t he have trouble with that last season?) Bricks the 2nd.—->Jackson rebounds, drops it off to Lyle. He drives, bumps defender, dribbles a shot in. 42-25. 42.0

Buckeyes give up three to Koenig on other end. 45-27.

Lyle drives lane and kicks to Tate in left corner. Three attempt misses.

45-27. Wisconsin. End of 1st half.

Two wheels have fallen off the Ohio State bus.










Random Buckeye hoop thoughts – Buckeye men’s recruits

Going to try this…even though thinking it might not be interesting to anyone but me…

I’ve run myself over with a number of local dump trucks in punishment for not setting my recording parameters properly to capture the Ohio State at Minnesota played on this past Sunday night.

The Buckeyes started off poorly. Playing on the road anywhere in the Big Ten is never easy. Minnesota’s Williams Arena, when rocking can, especially, be a most difficult location to get things done in. I’m hoping the team can lower its pulse rate early on at Wisconsin Thursday night.

It doesn’t get any easier at the Kohl Center, a place where Wisconsin rarely loses.

______________  _____________________

I’m going to start out with this so I don’t get accused of burying it…

Personally, I don’t think this is Thad Matta’s last season at Ohio State…unless this year’s squad falls completely apart, which means finishing the Big Ten schedule with a ratio of one win for every two losses, I don’t think Gene Smith will truly consider firing him…

A. The relative ineffectiveness this season, and subsequent loss for the season, of Ohio State’s pivotal talent, Keita Bates-Diop, has to be factored into the equation. Was he ever healthy this season?

B. Whatever any fan’s opinion of the current state of the program is, Thad has given some of the very best years of his coaching career to Ohio State. By any comparable standards, the positive quality of his career at Ohio State is undeniable.

C. IF he will someday step down, or be asked to, from the Ohio State head coaching position, it will be done with great care.

D. Thad Matta has earned the right to determine the future of his involvement at Ohio State.

That’s all I got to say about that.

___________  _________________

Watched the women’s team play at Michigan State Tuesday evening. I can’t recall many times I’ve watched Ohio State play in Breslin where it’s gone well.

I had no idea Spartan Tori Jankoska was anywhere near the all time Michigan State scoring record. She soon had 19 points on the way to 31 in the 1st half and I knew all about it then. The cherry on the top was after she passed the all time record, I think after Jankoska scored her ninth point, she then went on to record the single game scoring record by adding 11 points in the 2nd half for a total of 42.

I can’t recall a player setting two records of that type in the same game ever before. Can you?

__________ ______________________

The MSU game was maddening to watch. I love Kelsey Mitchell’s ability and most of the time she is off the charts with results. Her results on Tuesday reminded me of why I scratch my head about her every so often, though.

It’s hard to define Kelsey’s game. I’m not a coach. Just a long time observer. My observation is Mitchell is a player with exquisite shooting touch. So. How does she have streaks where she looks like the worst shot on the team?

She missed 14 of 18 shots she took Tuesday. At least nine of her attempts were total bricks. Five or six didn’t hit the rim, give or take a few, and came off the backboard at head bashing speed. Or missed everything.

Kelsey’s talent is amazing. When she’s on, and that’s a good bit of the time, Mitchell is as good a scorer as there is in college hoops, whether it’s the guys or the girls.

Just something I think about after she’s had a half or full game like that.

___________-  ______________

Overall, the Buckeyes acted like the basketball was way too hot to hold on to get a decent shot up at the rim. Their shot selection was u-g-l-y. Some of that is due to MSU’s defense but Ohio State badly missed many shots.  They appeared to sometimes just be throwing the ball at the basket. They made 23-74 in total and but eight of 36 in the second half alone. 31% overall.

Definitely wishing the Ohio State women a more effective and easier to watch game on Sunday at Purdue. They are 4-1 in conference so I’ll give them one u-g-l-y game and expect better for the foreseeable future.

——————– ________ —————

Ohio State Buckeye men’s team plays at Wisconsin tonight. The Badgers are 13-3 overall & 2-1 in conference.

Once again the Buckeyes have a shot to change the narrative. If you read this and are thinking there’s no way the Buckeyes can win tonight then I invite you not to watch. I have a prior commitment at 7:00 but I will make sure I get this game taped so I can view it in the morning.

Wisconsin lost 66-55 to Purdue this past Sunday after winning nine games in a row. There may be a bit of angst in Madison that came from the loss to the Boilermakers but it’s nothing like what the Buckeyes feel.

I always hope for the best for Ohio State hoops. This team needs to claw its way out of the hole it has fallen into. One that increasingly is filling with new dirt. After it does that, then we can talk.

____________ ______________

I try to watch as many Big 10 conference games as I can.

Non Buckeye players I’ve seen that I like in the conference so far are Penn State’s post Mike Watkins, Rutgers Mike Williams, Michigan State’s Nick Ward, Michigan’s Moritz Wagner, Purdue’s Caleb Swanigan, Iowa’s Peter Jok, Nebraska’s Tai Webster, Northwestern’s Vic Law, Malcom Hill from Illinois and Minnesota’s Nate Mason.

I don’t have a clear view of any Maryland, Wisconsin, or Indiana players I appreciate. Haven’t had the pleasure of watching much of those squads yet.

I think Watkins is going to be the envy of league post players for the next couple seasons. He’s good around the rim and mobile and lean, yet full of explosion and bounce.

Mike Williams seems to be a steady all round player with stats that reflect it. On a team that’s 0-4 in conference, with athletic talent like a Corey Sanders around, it’s hard to get noticed. But I appreciate the steady play of Williams.

Nick Ward is another player, and I say proudly, a Central Ohio person, who is a quality first year post player. Of the vaunted Michigan State recruiting class, he is the best of that crew. Hands down. Good show, Nick.

At 6’11, Moritz Wagner intrigues me. He can get some things done for you on offense, inside-out, outside-in. As a sophomore, he’s taken positive steps forward and exhibits a good attitude.

Neither Caleb Swanigan or Peter Jok need me to say too much about them.

Swanigan has gotten so much better this season. If you followed him through high school it was understood he had immense ability. I think what I’ve been most impressed with is the effort he’s put in to conditioning his body. It makes a big difference to be able to go, go, go when you start off with the large body he did.

Jok is a wonderful offensive talent to watch. He’s smooth as can be. A good leader.

Nebraska’s Tai Webster sometimes makes me think of former Ohio State all-time great, Jimmy Jackson. I’ve watched him motor down the court a number of times this season with the ball in hand and it’s been difficult for opponents to knock him off course. He’s powerful and fast and knows how to use those attributes. Another player who has made a leap.

Vic Law is long and athletic and is a hard matchup. He can go over or around you and is good on offense and defense. I’ve been waiting to see him play well on a consistent basis and this season he’s getting it done. (Honorable mention to Ohioan’s Dererk Pardon amd Gavin Skelly)

Malcom Hill. Another in a line of Illinois scorers who erupt with points. Fun to watch.

Nate Mason is a great point guard for Minnesota. Think I like the fact his speed is different from everyone else’s. Not his foot speed, although, he’s plenty fast. It’s his ability to change gears to get where he wants to go that impresses.

_____________ ____________________

Buckeye recruits are having good seasons, thus far, it seems.

Darius Bazley had to sit out 11 games I think when he transferred from Finneytown to Cincinnati Princeton. He should start playing within the next week. Looking forward to getting a few views of his ability in the high school setting.

Versailles Justin Ahrens apparently started the season off a bit slowly but has turned it on in a big way recently. He recently scored his 1,000th high school point and games I’ve read about lately he’s scored in mid 20s all the way up to 36. As just a junior Ahrens seems to be getting his feet set pretty well.

Upper Arlington’s Dane Goodwin has led his team to an 8-1 record and is near the tippy top of Columbus area scoring leaders. He was second on the list last time I looked at 27 points plus per game. Each season he’s played Dane has gotten better. This season he has the pressure of being the well known veteran on the Golden Bear team, who also committed to Ohio State a long time ago.

Hargrave Military Academy’s Braxton Beverly is in the midst of an excellent team season. He starts at point guard for Hargrave, often competing against top level competition. He is the snake in the weeds {A good snake : ) } that will strike you, if you aren’t paying attention, in terms of being a known quantity. Braxton is credited for his exemplary attitude off and on court. On court he is also credited for having a tenacity, and touch and feel for the game that will be a benefit for him at Ohio State when he is deployed by Thad Matta.

Kaleb Wesson’s Westerville South team has experienced two losses in a row, one to the Columbus area’s number one team, Pickerington Central, and the latter to an excellent and road seasoned Reynoldsburg squad. Versus Reynoldsburg hit an off balance three as time expired to win by a single point in regulation. Kaleb is scoring, rebounding, blocking shots, playing defense, and passing for assists not many big players can attempt. Wesson appears to continue to get in better and better shape.

Last thing on Ohio State recruits and Buckeye recruiting. Why is it that the Ohio State staff offers some deserving local/Ohio young players early on? Others, just as deserving, in Central Ohio/Ohio, aren’t offered in the same manner?

As an example, the one player in the Central Ohio area I think should have an offer by now is Pickerington Central point guard, 2019 class, Jeremiah Francis.

I know recruiting is far more complex than I can imagine. But I think the Buckeyes need to offer Francis soon.


 Change Duck to Badgers! Go Buckeyes.

Purdue 76 Ohio State 75 – Reaction

Last night’s one point Ohio State loss to Purdue was both excruciating and a certain type of fun.

Excruciating because every small movement within a portion of each play registered as a heavy plus or minus disturbance moving through the medium of the entire Ohio State season schedule.

A certain type of fun because, although, many might think the game was a waste to watch when the final score favored Purdue, I live to watch the players and team spill their guts on court representing The Ohio State University.

Since I was 10 years old it’s been that way and I watched Ohio State basketball games with my family even before that, too.

Ohio State hoops fans feel like we have some kind of understanding of what it must be like to compete at the level these guys are at. But in reality, unless a person has laced up basketball shoes, put on a collegiate level uniform and had to contend with some of the very best athletes in the world, it’s impossible to know how difficult it is.

Even people ultra dedicated to Buckeye hoops, like me and a few others I know of, are on the outside looking in where tangible evidence of the size, strength and speed, skill level, and basketball IQ are concerned.

But win or lose I watch every second of every game possible and last night’s Purdue game reminded me again of why hoops is my favorite collegiate sport.

It was an exciting game to watch. Even though the Buckeyes, despite many instances of excellent stretches of play, lost.

The very first collegiate basketball game I watched in person was a game between Ashland & Defiance held inside Marion (Ohio) County’s Veterans Memorial Coliseum.

Ashland had a bunch of little guys. Defiance a bunch of bigger guys. The little guys won. It was a battle but speed and skill overcame size and strength. Those same variables have come into play in my mind ever since.

I’ve learned a basketball player is a basketball player no matter what their appearance might seem to divulge about them.

The Boilermaker program has always had it’s share of sizable people to represent it’s men’s basketball teams.

Joe Barry Carroll, Steve Scheffler and AJ Hammons are good examples.

This season’s Purdue team meet those standards. Isaac Haas is one of the biggest human beings I’ve ever seen play the game. At 7’2, it’s not only his height. It’s his size, strength, and shooting touch, too. He has some favorable physical advantages but he has some limitations as well.

At 6’9 250 or so, Caleb Swanigan is another big, strong Purdue player. He just happens to also have unusually large portions of skills, too.

On the other hand, Purdue’s freshman guard, Carsen Edwards, isn’t exactly huge. But he’s fast, quick, athletic and skilled.

Purdue, as a team, is put together pretty well. While not a top 5 team nationally the Boilermakers appear to have almost everything required to make a strong run at the conference championship and a deep run in the NCAA tournament.

To make the NCAA tournament this season, Ohio State needs to beat a few teams like Purdue in conference. Indiana, Purdue, Wisconsin are a few of the teams that would fit nicely in that category, given the Buckeyes could earn a win against any combination of them. There are other in conference wins that would, also, be beneficial.

The Buckeyes coming so close last night to getting a win of that magnitude overwhelmed me with adrenaline I didn’t need in order to sleep after the game. I’m thinking the coaching staff, at least, and maybe the players, although they were probably worn out physically, faced the same battle to rest afterwards.

Sleep would have come much easier if the Buckeyes had won by a point, instead.

Back tracking a little, as last season trudged along pressure on the program built along the way. The team could never quite meet expectations. A crazy off season kept that pressure in place. The questions about this team picked right up as Ohio State stepped on court against the Naval Academy in November 2016.

Coach Matta’s ability to effectively coach at this stage of his career is a part of the conversation within that pressure. I have no idea what will happen this season if he cannot lead his team to an undisputed good showing when all is said and done.

But personally, I’m for Coach Matta all the way.

Then, last night after the game, more pressure was added when the news was announced Keita Bates-Diop will sit out the remainder of the season to have surgery on a leg stress fracture and to recover.

I didn’t know that during the game. I realized somewhere along the way he likely wasn’t going to play at all. But I had missed the pregame news he was out versus Purdue and now out for the season.

That’s awful news. It stinks. For Keita and his teammates.

Nevertheless, the season continues. Not much has changed.

Without Bates-Diop the Buckeyes played well enough to defeat Purdue. Ohio State has largely been without an effective KBD the entire season, anyway.

Near the end of last night’s contest and, especially, after Trevor Thompson picked up the loose ball under the rim at the end of the game and converted a shot to tie it up and was fouled giving Thompson a free throw chance to put the Buckeyes ahead, I thought Ohio State was finally going to add a very big win to its resume.

But it didn’t work out that way. There’s nothing for the Buckeyes to do except to travel to Minnesota and try to win on the road in The Barn/Williams Arena.

I have no reason to say it but I think Ohio State will walk out of The Barn with a win. The team has raised the level of it’s play. Minnesota is very good but Ohio State will play desperate with a lot of energy. The Gophers like an uptempo game, which I feel is a favorable style for the Buckeyes.

Sometimes desperate works.

Go Buckeyes!