Buckeyes Dismantle the Dookies

By Chris Lauderback on November 29, 2011 at 11:48p
Getty: Joe RobbinsHe's Crafty: 17 points, eight dimes, five floor burns

Playing in front of a raucous sellout crowd featuring the likes of Greg Oden, Evan Turner, Mike Conley, LeBron James and Dwyane Wade tonight in the Schott, Thad Matta's Buckeyes heel-stomped the Duke Blue Devils 85-63 in the most impressive display of colllege hoops seen so far in this young season. 

Coach K summed it up succinctly afterward when he offered, "Sometimes you get your butt kicked. I've had my butt kicked and we've kicked butt. Tonight, my butt is sore."

The Buckeyes placed four in double figures led by 21 from Jared Sullinger and 20 from William Buford. 

DeShaun Thomas had arguably his best game as a Buckeye scoring 18 on 8/12 from the floor, featuring a solo 9-0 run to end the first half and 14 of 17 Buckeye points overall as Ohio State extended a 38-26 lead to 47-28 at the half and 55-32 at the 16:28 mark of the 2nd. 

Aaron Craft was also in beast mode with 17 points (7/11) and eight assists in 38 minutes of action. 

The game was defined by runs in a hectic first half. 

Fueled by the electric atmosphere in VCA, Ohio State jumped out to a quick 13-2 start behind a triple from Craft, two layups from Buford sandwiched between a patented hesitation slash from Craft and finally two buckets from Sully in the paint as Duke played him straight up. 

The Buckeyes then allowed a 15-5 blitz by the Blue Devils cutting the lead to 18-17 at 9:49 until intermission. Austin Rivers (6) and Mason Plumlee (7) paced the Dookie comeback but poor shot selection by OSU was largely to blame. In six trips, the Buckeyes committed a turnover (Sully), took four triples with only one in rhythm (1/4) and an 18 foot jumper from Ravenel. 

Keeping in theme, the Buckeyes then went on another spurt to end the half, this one game-deciding 29-11 blitz, to take a commanding 47-28 lead into the locker room. 

Thomas was absolutely outstanding during the run scoring 13 points in about every way possible including a bunny in the lane, a leaner featuring some nice body control as he slashed through the left side of the lane, a triple from the right corner, a floater in the lane off a good look from Sully as he exploited a soft spot in the Dookie zone, a putback of a Craft miss in traffic and finally a 16 footer on the right baseline to end the half. 

The dominating first half performance saw the Buckeyes shoot a scorching 61% from the floor while holding Duke to 44% overall and just 1/7 from downtown. Ohio State also controlled the glass 18-11 and turned five offensive rebounds into 10 points. 

The Buckeyes committed just four turnovers in the opening 20 minutes while turning eight Blue Devil miscues into 10 points. 

After a Plumlee bucket to start the 2nd half, Thomas was back at it hitting a trey before putting back a Sully miss a few possessions later making it 55-32 Buckeyes with 16:28 left in the massacre. 

A mini-run from Duke cut the lead to 17 at 58-41 with 13:06 left but OSU responded with a modest 8-2 run to put the game on ice at 66-43. Craft started it off with a pretty bank shot in the lane, Buford then exploited a mismatch by taking Plumlee to the rack for two and Sully closed it out with a pair of free throws and a bucket off the glass from the right block. 

The Buckeyes were content to hold serve from there and Matta finally turned to his bench with OSU up 20 around the 2:16 mark.

Lenzelle Smith Jr. had another decent outing with three points (1/1) and five boards in 25 minutes before taking a nasty spill underneath the hoops as he snatched a defensive rebound in traffic. He stayed on the ground for close to five minutes before eventually walking off favoring his left side. Thad said Smith got the wind knocked out of him and dinged his tailbone but he's fine. Though Austin Rivers had his moments, Smith battled the dude pretty well on defense.  

Sibert (15 min) and Ravenel (13) were the only two subs to see the court when the game was competitive. Sibert chipped in four points and three boards while Rav tallied a board and an assist. It seems clear Matta will go no more than eight deep once LaQuinton Ross gets acclimated by the end of December as I'm guessing he becomes a double-digit minutes factor.

For the game, Ohio State shot an impressive 59% from the floor including 8/14 from distance (57%) while holding Duke to just 3/15 from downtown (20%). They also won the glass 33-27 and held a 15-1 advantage in 2nd chance points midway through the 2nd half. 

Rivers was impressive in defeat with 22 points on 8/18 shooting. Plumlee added 16 as the only other Dookie in double figures. 

The blowout was certainly a convincing statement that will rightfully earn some 1st place votes but with favorable factors such as playing at home while Duke was coming off the Maui trip, I'm much more interested in seeing how this team looks when they take their show on the road at Kansas on 12/10.  

Before the showdown in Lawrence, the Buckeyes play host to Texas Pan-American this Saturday at noon in the Schott. 


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Conroy's picture

Was at the game.  Never seen the Schott get close to like that before.


Why did they stop the game forever with ~8 to go in the second half?

Chris Lauderback's picture

There was an issue with the game clock. 

buckeyes763's picture

The wisonsin game on senior night last year was pretty close, if not better atmosphere IMO, we were angry that game and stomped em. but this was the first real statement this team made too and the game was a blast

aznchipmunk's picture

I attended today's Duke game, and I was also at the Wisky "Deal With It" game last year.  I think both games were equally as loud.  The Arena erupted uncontrollably several times despite the fact that we had huge leads in both games. Go Bucks! I'd like to see this team make the Final Four.

Side note: Does anyone know when the last time Coach K/Duke lost to a team by a margin of that magnitude?

Go Bucks! Roll-Tide!

builderofcoalitions's picture


Because we couldn't go for three.

Muss_15's picture

1995 for a regular season non-conference game.  2009 Clemson I believe was a blow out

M tots's picture

Ditto about the atmosphere.  That 9-0 run (or was it 11-0?) clearly set the tone for the entire night

Chris Lauderback's picture

11-0 then 13-2. 

njc2o's picture

disagree... Wisconsin last year was better. (last night was still great though)

TLB's picture

Clocks are automatic these days, stopping with the whistle and that apparently was not working.

BuckeyeChief's picture

Who has the complete list of former players in the crowd?

Also cool to see LBJ and DWade there even though I hope they fall flat again.

"2014 National Champions...deal with it!!!"

Kalamazoo Steve's picture

I remember Penn, Redd, Oden, Cook, Conley and Turner. And the ghost of Trill.

BuckeyeChief's picture

Thanks. Would've loved to have been there.

"2014 National Champions...deal with it!!!"

Baroclinicity's picture

Dear Buckeye Hoops:  Bottle that up, then bring it out come tourney time.  Thanks in advance.

When you're holding a hammer, everything looks like a nail.

ThirdLegLouie's picture

The Ohio State team that took the floor tonight played on a level that would beat any team in the country.  I can't think of a single team in the NCAA that would have beaten them given the way they played tonight. Impressive to say the least. 

If you ain't a Silver Bullet, you're a target

Seth4Bucks's picture

The trick is getting that team to show up for the NCAA tourney. I don't want to dominate the regular season only to get bounced again. Time to get that NT!

Bobcat04's picture

Absolutely awesome.  No two ways about it.  It's rare that Krzyzewski gets his ass handed to him.  Love it.  

  I will say this, though.  I live in constant fear of transfers with Matta.  I agree with Chris above that maybe Ross cracks the lineup, and those eight will be the only non-garbage time players.  So that means that you're telling two Mc Donalds All-Americans that they won't see minutes that matter all year.    Can't argue with the starters' production, but I just hope that Matta is able to sell these kids on the long haul.  We've been able to bring in some real talent, and I would hate to see it walk away.  Especially in basketball, when you have to plan positions in recruiting so far in advance.  

  However, I am loving this to no end.

Bucks43201's picture

I watched the game on tv --- awesome atmosphere...especially with the former Buckeyes who are NBA stars in attendance

Got me wondering --- did we have any official visits (hoops or football) to that Duke game?

Would have been a great game for a prospect to come soak OSU in for...but, I know those visits are usually on weekends if they are officials.

If not -- I'm sure they saw the game on tv

"You win with people." - Woody Hayes

Bucks43201's picture

p.s. I have NEVER see Duke get their a*s beat that bad from start to finish...ever

"You win with people." - Woody Hayes

nickma71's picture

Did you miss UNLV doing far worse in the championship game? 1990. Not a UNLV fan, but a great night for me.

Bucks43201's picture

I was just a baby then

"You win with people." - Woody Hayes

Jeremy Birmingham's picture

Just a heckuva game to watch. Can't wait until next Saturday in Kansas to see what we're made of on the road.

painterlad's picture

They showed a stat on tv that said the worse Duke loss ever to a Big Ten team was to MSU by 25.

To err is human. Really sucking requires having yellow stripes on your helmet.

buckeyedude's picture

It's good to see the Buckeye b-ballers kick butt against a quality, non-conference opponent. I think this tells us a lot about how good this team is, and how well we should do come tourney time.



nickma71's picture

On the tube, Duke play by play man Dick Vitale was suprised to see Duke turn to a zone defense. They were noticably over matched in athleticisim. Craft deserves the credit for the win. His defense set the tone more than anything.

flipbuckeye's picture

Hell of a game. Never seen the Buckeye basketball crowd that crazy (didn't get to watch the Wisky game last year).

Rivers was quite the baller, but obviously nowhere near enough to match what we had on the court. Just a completely dominant game. This team is HUNGRY.

Seth4Bucks's picture

They had one player playing lights out, we had a whole team playing with their hair on fire.

O-H-I-Owe-U's picture

I think Thad really wanted a dominate win, but he's gotta go deeper on the bench this season. 

RBuck's picture

Great job by Sully staying out of foul trouble...my biggest worry coming into this game.

Long live the southend.

builderofcoalitions's picture

My hat goes off to Deshaun Thomas. Dude is playing out of position, has given up scoring opportunites to be on this team, and is always improving on defense. His 18 points against a Duke team were huge and he took over at points last night.

Because we couldn't go for three.

Tommy's picture

Am I the only one that thinks this game may have been a dangerous aberration?  It's clear that Duke was still hungover from the Hawaii trip, and it seems like it was just one of those nights that our shots were falling.  Thomas is notoriously streaky, and Craft had a 3 bank in for goodness sakes.

We are a national title contender no doubt, but I hope these guys realize they still have a lot to work on.  In my opinion, we aren't yet close to being the well oiled machine that last years team was, and they still found a way to lose too early in the tourney.

Great win.  Still a long way to go.

Moses Cleveland's picture

Brady Hoke is fat.


BucksfanXC's picture

Welcome to the basketball bandwagon everyone! And before December?! I'm pleased.

“Any time you give a man something he doesn't earn, you cheapen him. Our kids earn what they get, and that includes respect.”  - Woody

Craft to the Rafters's picture

Tommy - 

everyone knew the team had a lot to figure out, fans are just excited that we are seeing things start to click this early.

and to anyone at the game - 

did Urban Meyer make it out to the Schott? I hope he was there to enjoy the BuckNut's energy

Seth4Bucks's picture

He was out recruiting or so I heard.