Bucks Demolish Michigan to Earn Spot in Title Game

By Chris Lauderback on March 10, 2012 at 6:13p
AP: Michael ConroyALL DAY: Sully went off for 24 points on 9/14 shooting

Again looking like a completely different team in Indianapolis than what we saw for a large chunk of February, Ohio State jumped on Michigan early and never looked back in a 77-55 victory to earn a spot in the conference tournament championship game tomorrow afternoon against Michigan State.

The win improved the Buckeyes to 16-3 in the last 19 matchups with That Confidence Booster Up North and was their 8th straight W in conference tournament action.

Jared Sullinger and Deshaun Thomas flat out dominated the Michigan front line. Sullinger poured in 24 points in just 27 minutes on 9/14 shooting while Thomas got loose for 22 points on 10/15 from the field.

William Buford had 10 points and Aaron Craft chipped in six points, four dimes and three steals while demolishing Trey Burke. In the PG matchup everyone wanted to see again, Craft limited Burke to five points on 1/11 shooting with eight turnovers. Burke’s first bucket was a meaningless one that cut Ohio State’s lead to 58-38 with just under seven minutes left in regulation.

The Buckeyes shot 49% from the floor and outscored Michigan 40-24 in the paint. 

At the other end, Michigan was busy hitting just 31% from the field including a 4/25 effort (16%) from distance.

Burke’s backcourt mate, Tim Hardaway Jr., was held to 13 points on 3/10 shooting meaning the two big guns for UM combined to miss 17 of 21 FGA’s.

The win propels Buford to his 4th conference tournament championship game, a feat no other conference player has ever accomplished.

Overwhelming Michigan early, the Buckeyes raced out to a 16-3 lead as they hit eight of their first 13 shots while holding the maize and blue to 1/10 from the floor with three turnovers.

Sullinger attacked Jordan Morgan hitting four of his first six shots for eight points during the run and Deshaun Thomas added six points on 3/5 shooting. Showing the same crisp ball movement they flashed against Purdue, the Buckeyes consistently had wide open looks from high percentage spots on the floor.

Meanwhile, the perimeter defense was dialed in as Craft and company fought exceptionally well over high ball screens. The relentless effort out top kept Michigan scoreless for an early 8:16 stretch.

A Stu Douglass triple cut OSU’s lead to 21-12 at the 6:59 mark but the Buckeyes answered with a 9-2 spurt featuring a feathery tip-in and a patented spin move from Sully complemented by a triple and an under control spinning lay in from Buford pushing the margin to 30-14 good guys with 4:09 left in the half.

When the dust finally settled on the Buckeye blitzkrieg they were up 34-21 at intermission thanks to holding Michigan to 28% on 7/25 from the floor. The perimeter defense can’t be overstated as Burke was held to 0/4 shooting with three turnovers while Tim Hardaway Jr. hit just 1/4. Even better, the D helped hold Michigan to 1/13 (8%) from downtown in the opening 20 minutes.

At the offensive end, Sullinger (16 pts, 8/10 FG) and Thomas (8 pts, 4/7 FG) dominated the action combining to outscore the Wolverines by themselves. In fact, Sully had more FG’s than UM as they headed to the locker room. 

The 2nd half was simply more of the same as "Ohio" opened with a 10-3 spurt pushing the lead to 44-24 with 15:49 left in regulation. Showing mercy, Thad soon began massaging the bench allowing nine Buckeyes to enter the scoring column. 

The bottom line is this group looks like a totally different team than what we saw from mid-late February. They look focused, confident and are generally playing within their individual skill sets. 

A win over Sparty could actually very well earn the Buckeyes the final #1 seed so get ready for a fiercely physical game slated for a 3:30pm tip. 


Comments Show All Comments

ThirdLegLouie's picture

Loved watching this game. Given the limited talent our rival has, and how easy they were to beat today, it really shows how embarassing that loss in AA really was. 

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

FortMeyer's picture

And shows the value of home court in the B1G. We beat them by fifteen at our place.

bucknut24's picture

We smashed them bitches!!

autohustle's picture

that was fun. more of that team plz

Jack Fu's picture

Reading the commenters on the excellent MGoBlog's MGoBoard complaining about charging calls that went in favor of OSU may have redefined comedy for me. "Ironic" does not even begin to describe it.

FortMeyer's picture

Just had to take a look there myself during the game and the range of excuses went from foul calls to the team being tired (OSU played yesterday as well) and on and on.  Many just saying eff Ohio, Sullinger, Matta and on and on. When compared to what we do here they are classless. Sorry if it offends anyone but I would be embarassed of what they present there if I were a fan of UM. Oh yea, they got another Ohio commit. CB Gareon Conley out of Massilon, the best CB to ever play the game (according to the experts there).

3 Yards And A Cloud of Dust's picture

TTUN looked like the 13th team in MAC...LOL...yes, I'm laughing at you.


M Man's picture

Outcoached.  Outplayed.  I'd say, "Outhustled," but I don't think Jared Sullinger broke a sweat.

To say that this was Michigan's worst game of the year is inadequate, to the team that did the dominating.

What a disappointment, in that it wasn't even a good game to watch.

Congrats to the Buckeyes, and if they play like that tomorrow, I'd expect them to win.  If they put on another effort like that, and win handily over MSU (I'd be perfectly happy to see that), I'd change my mind and give them a 1-seed.

J.Mo's picture

It was a great game to watch.

Orlando Buckeye's picture

Burke spent all his "outstanding" last night.  

Kalamazoo Steve's picture

This is what recruiting does. Have fun with Meyer as well.

Run_Fido_Run's picture

M Man, you're a class act. Far more magnanimous statement than I'd make if I were in your shoes.

Michigan will again be a tough out in the NCAA tourney, especially if they hook the right types of matchups, and this time they won't have to face a 1 seed in the 2R.

Unlike some of my brethren, I'll be rooting for 'em, barring the unlikely scenario they run into Ohio State (or Purdue) later in the tournament.  

M Man's picture

I've seen all but a few of Michigan's games this year.  That was very near to being our worst.  I've seen 8 or 10 of your games this year.  I think that was very near to being your best.  I hope tomorrow is another great one for you guys.

buckeyedude's picture

That was just an old fashioned, take-'em-to-the-shed azz whippin'. From beginning to end. Once this tourney is over though, I am with you Fido, I want all B1G teams to do well n the Big Dance.

Although OSU played very well yesterday, I think the win vs. Duke was much more impressive. But thanks, M Dude. ;)



JakeBuckeye's picture

We are hitting our stride right when I said we would. Our strength of schedule and talent is being rewarded.

Baroclinicity's picture

Still smelling a Final Four?

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

LadyBuck's picture

Never in doubt. Good job for keeping faith.

D-Day0043's picture

That's what happens when you write checks with your mouth your a** can't cash. When you want to get cocky and start talking smack, don't expect us to show any mercy on you. Still shooting 3's up by 20 with 2 minutes left. As far as football is concerned, wait until November and Urban Meyer hangs 60 on you. Brady Hoke should have enjoyed the win and kept his mouth shut. If you thought getting dominated for a decade was bad, it is about to get worse.

I am D-Day0043 and I approve this message.

funky123's picture

Well said D-Day0043.

pcon258's picture

thats what a basketball game should look like. it was such a pleasant watching experience. provided some much needed solace from studying for finals

buckeye76BHop's picture

Amazing how much different this team has looked in the last two games (reminicent of the Duke and Indiana games at home).  Loved watching OSU pound TTUN...it was FANFKINGTASTIC!  One more guys and on to the Big Dance...GO BUCKS!

"There's nothing that cleanses your soul like getting the hell kicked out of you."

"I love football. I think it is most wonderful game in world and I despise to lose."

Woody Hayes 1913 - 1987 

Seabass1974's picture

Thanks for pointing out the MGOLOSEBLOG webby for me. Those posts were hilarious and quite enjoyable. Especially this one:


Ohio threes (Score:1)
Joined: 10/19/2011
MGoPoints: 4
Are all the three point attempts by ohio at the end necessary?



Yes, yes they were necessary. You will call us Ohio State. Next time remember you are playing Ohio State not Ohio. They are the Bobcats not the Buckeyes.

The harder you work, the harder it is to surrender. - Woody Hayes

FortMeyer's picture

They made a big deal out of words exchanged between Matta and Beilein. It was obvious Beilein was saying something about the steal from Sibert by his sub when Sibert was trying to dribble away the last twenty seconds out by the half court line. They lost, they're pissed and trying to make something out of nothing. Just like everything else on that blog. Read about the latest recruit and how they are blowing him up if you want another chuckle.

M Man's picture

The thinking, that I agree with, is that Jim Beilein was saying to Thad Matta that he had tried to call off Michigan's subs from playing such a pressure defense in the last futile minutes; Matta was saying 'that's okay,' and they were both laughing about it.  If somebody knows better, I'm all ears.

Kalamazoo Steve's picture

As a salesman I feel I can get a read on folks. I read the hand shake as Beilein telling Matta that his squad is crazy talented and that they are coming together at the right time. He is a classy guy, just like all the other coaches in the BIG . Except for Crean.

buckeyedude's picture

Unlike most of us, I don't get my undies in a bunch over the "Ohio" thing. Really.  Is it that big of a deal? One should expect a little of that from their rival, no?

 Winning is the best revenge.

And the second and third teamers want their chance to shine too, even if it's just "mop up duty."



mclovin's picture

The Ohio thing is pathetic. Woody came up w the whole thing by never saying michigAn and referring to them as the state up north. Woody was an oh guy, born and bred, with a lifelong hatred of Michigan. Hoke, who is from oh, tries to rip woody off by not directly referring to osu by using the name of a school in Ohio that already uses that name. It is weak and lame. The only people bothered by this lame copycat attempt to be cool are those who attend Ohio university.

mastermiind's picture

anytime zack novak gets exposed, i have to smile. he probably should have been thrown out of the game today after kicking ravenel when they were on the floor together (i would estimate with about ten minutes left in the 2nd half.) same old, same old from the scrub who was suspended for elbowing buckeye guard pj hill in the mouth during 2009.


billjones's picture

Deshaun Thomas was a badass in this game.  First round may be callin' 

For the love of God, please let us beat them in football in a similar fashion this fall.

thatlillefty's picture

We are certainly coming together at the right time. Undefeated in March?

What i find most encouraging... Willy Bu isn't hasn't gotten many looks these past two games. But it doesn't seem to bother him! It's looks like he cares more about the team's success than his own points. That's the kind of attitude you want from your senior leader.

This is a special team. Love these guys.

ShowThemOhiosHere's picture

I loved what I saw today.  Michigan put in their place.  But more importantly, OSU playing their best basketball of the year.  These last 2.5 games have been the best 2.5 games worth of basketball played by OSU against Big Ten opponents.  I wonder what my buddy who said OSU is "not a top 15 team", Michigan "absolutely deserved to be in the Sugar Bowl", and Danny Coales "definitely did not have possession" has to say about this. 

Class of 2010.

M Man's picture

One thing only.  Danny Coales definitely did not have possession.  If Coales had possession, then we beat Iowa.  (On an identical call.)

LTRAIN's picture

Looks like tourney champ tomorrow will pull either 4th number 1 seed or first 2 seed. Does that mean winner ends up out west?


painterlad's picture

"That Confidence Builder Up North." That made me laugh because they say that every joke has truth in it.


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

Doug Funnie's picture

Since we had a 3 way tie for regular season this championship match is a litmus test for who is the real B1G champion IMO. Will be a fun game to watch.

JakeBuckeye's picture

Yeah. Michigan obviously didn't belong with us and Sparty. Now let's let the big boys battle it out tomorrow in what hopes to be an instant classic.

FLBuckeye's picture

It's 10:43 pm and... TTUN still sucks!!! GO BUCKS!!!!

JakeBuckeye's picture

CBS' bracket guy Jerry Palm has us out West as (presumably) the last number one seed. Not that that means anything though, as Joe Linardi is obviously the guy to go to for bracketology. I just thought it should be noted.

Buckeye Chuck's picture

My guess: Missouri gets the western #1 seed, and the winner of our game is the #2; while the loser of our game is #2 the regional with Syracuse. The other 2s are Kansas (UNC) and Duke (Kentucky). I don't think there's much question Duke is the weakest of those 8 teams, and I will call shenanigans if the committee separates them and Kentucky.

For obvious reasons, I hope the committee finds a way to match up Michigan and Ohio (Lunardi's last projection had the Wolverines paired up with Akron in the first round, and the Bobcats ended up with that bid).

The most "loud mouth, disrespect" poster on 11W.

FortMeyer's picture

That would be funny, BChuck, for them to talk about Ohio (Bobcats) and have some smart ass reporter keep asking if they mean OU or OSU. Let them be embarassed by their own words.

cdsperr's picture

I wonder how Brady Hoke feels about Ohio stomping Michigan and somehow winning the MAC in the same night

Bucks's picture

Was very pleased to see this team continue on that extra pass or two so much earlier. We've lamented poor shots, early shots & selfish shots. Plenty of examples in this outing of a unselfish team. Loved it. Hopefully they see the dividends as well.

baddogmaine's picture

Where was this team in February? Waiting for a starring role in the sequal to THE CONNECTICUT 2011 STORY? Two comments, because even in the euphoria of crushing your rival like a grape there are always at least two comments.

1.  It wasn't just that Buford was missing, it was that he looked bad doing it. They were bad shots - shots that should have been made and shots that should not have been taken. 4 of 12 was basically the movie that played last year, and there is no reason to think that the sequal to that one won't end the same way. WB can and does contribute in huge ways, but we continue to be at high risk of him contributing to an early loss.

2. As Stewart Mandel would say: a small story but I'm sure you're following it. Jordan Sibert is not the first high school kid to discover that D1 ball plays faster and meaner than he was ready for. He might not be getting much practice time at this point and so might not get better at playing at speed till next year. But there is no reason why even a late-rotation scrub can't practice free throw shooting on his own. He didn't just miss both his freebies, he looked like he had never attempted a shot before. Note to Siebert - a guard who can't play without turning it over,  hit from the floor or the charity stripe is going to have a very unrewarding career.

Bucks43201's picture

great victory for the Bucks....2 Michigan observations:

1. Zack Novak really likes to jump on people, pigpile style. Somehow he got a jump ball call or 2 out of that, when it should have been a foul.

2. Also, man alive - Trey Burke pushes off to create space. He did that all game back in Ann Arbor in February.

"You win with people." - Woody Hayes

Arizona_Buckeye's picture

Good to see the team playing with some attitude for a change!!!  For pretty much the entire month of February, they played uninspired and lacked the fire in their eyes.  Whatever happened, I am elated because it now appears they are playing pissed off and with a ton of aggression and a huge chip on their shoulders!  They came out and absolutley destroyed Michigan from the start and never let up!  Keep it up guys - starting with unleashing an ass kicking assault on Sparty in 4 hours!!!

The best thing about Pastafarianism? It is not only acceptable, but advisable, to be heavily sauced

VestedInterest's picture

Yeah the Bucks played pretty well, but it should not be understateed how poorly UM played, they were horrible.

osubuckeye4life's picture

True, though how much of that was TTUN having a bad game or just flat out getting outplayed by tOSU?

VestedInterest's picture

Not easy to make the distinction, but in applying the way I analyze the Bucks performance to them, I would have been really pissed at the squad lol...a lot of missed bunnies, ill timed poor shot selection, blocking out Thomas and Sully on the boards...I mean they were terrible and did not look like the #10 team in the country...at all. I'm not taking away from the Bucks performance any, as you take what is given.

cwerph's picture

That Confidence Booster Up North - - -

appropriate reference and excellent writing!

BuckGuy003's picture

That awkward moment when michigan thought they were good cause they beat us once...this will also go for football come november.