Monday Skull Session

By Jason Priestas on March 26, 2012 at 6:00a

Rock Chalk, Rematch.

Ohio State will get another crack at the one team to beat them before Big Ten play began and this time, they'll have the services of East Region MVP Jared Sullinger.

The colors and fight songs remain the same, but aside from that, both teams are very different than the teams that met on December 10th in Lawrence.

In addition to having the team's heart and soul available for the rematch, Ohio State has emerged from a midseason funk as trendy pick for the one team that may be able to knockoff Kentucky. The first meeting did serve as somewhat of a coming out party for a still young Deshaun Thomas (15 first half points), but while he emerged as a pure scorer, his presence on the court now means scoring and a tenacious offensive rebounder.

Freshmen Amir Williams and Shannon Scott have both benefited from quality tournament minutes, which from a confidence standpoint, are worth about four regular season minutes each. Likewise, the Scarlet Mamba had not yet emerged for the Buckeyes, and emerge he did, earning a spot on the East Regional all-tournament team.

This being the Final Four and all, Kansas is also surging. At the time of the first meeting, I didn't think the Jayhawks were impressive at all and they validated my belief by losing their next game to Davidson, 80-74.

Since that loss, which dropped Bill Self's squad to 7-3, Kansas gone 24-3, including wins in 13 of their final 14 games. Their second half performance against North Carolina was nothing short of masterful, holding Harrison Barnes, Tyler Zeller and crew to just 20 second half points and zero in the final 3:55.

Like the Buckeyes, they're a much better team now and Jayhawk football coach Charlie Weis is feeling it enough to run his mouth a little:

Jayhawk guard Tyshawn Taylor, with more class at age 22 than Weis at 55, thinks we're in for a treat, "I think it's going to be a good game. The last time we played them they had their best player on the bench and it was a home game, so it's definitely their chance to get back at us. But we feel like we didn't play our best game, either."

Meanwhile, Vegas has Ohio State as early 2.5 point favorites.

ALWAYS BETTER WHEN UNNOTICED. If you're anything like me, you're just now coming down from the high of beating Syracuse to advance to the Final Four.

But, imagine how much more we'd appreciate the win if the referees hadn't decided to take over the game. In all, the crew of John Higgins, Mike Nance and Tom O'Neil called 49 fouls in 40 minutes, leading to 67 free throw attempts.

Although the Syracuse blogosphere, to their credit, are not saying the referees cost them the game and guard Scoop Jardine went out of his way to credit Ohio State instead of the refs in his postgame comments, Jim Boeheim couldn't resist a minor swipe, saying, "The problem wasn't our offense. It was our defense. And I guess we fouled too much."

Just to be clear, future revisionist historians, before Syracuse was forced to fouls seven times in the game's last minute, the foul totals stood at 22 for the Orange and 20 for Ohio State. Pretty evenly terrible.

ENJOY EVERY LAST MINUTE OF HIM. Although we head heard, as recently as two months ago, that Jared Sullinger to the NBA after this season was not a foregone conclusion and that he was very much enjoying the college experience, he may have let the cat out of the bag in the postgame presser when he lavished Amir Williams with praise:

"With Amir, Amir always had talent.  It's just unfortunately he's playing behind me and Evan (Ravenel) at the time, so watch out for him next year."

C'mon, you knew this was coming. It's either that, or Sullinger knows Ravenel is leaving early. Guess we'll have to wait and see.


THIS FOURSOME IS FEARSOME. So, Saturday we have a game pitting the hands-down best team (too soon, Wildcat fan?) in the country, Kentucky, against what may be America's hottest team, the Big East tournament champion Louisville Cardinals (who also own the nation's longest winning streak at eight games).

The other national semifinal will feature a pair of two seeds, each of whom knocked off a one seed and share a staggering 25 Final Four appearances between them.

For you fans of mid-major-free Final Fours, this must be heaven.

Kentucky and Ohio State were also the darlings of Vegas sportsbooks prior to the start of the tournament with the two schools considered the most likely national championship matchup. In fact, if the two schools win Saturday, it will mark the first national championship since 2007 (Florida-OSU) featuring the two pre-tournament favorites.

Ken Pomeroy agrees, with his current chances at: UK 42%, OSU 34%, KU 17% and UL 7%.

As such, the 11W Tournament Challenge leaderboard is packed with nice-looking brackets. "Matt's Bracket" sits in first place with 102 points with "11w fav" just one off the lead. To illustrate just how competitive things are, my bracket is in 20th place, yet is in the 99th percentile overall.

POTENTIAL GROWTH SPURT FOR THE MATTA TREE. The Thad Matta coaching tree is already alive and well, especially for such a young coach. Brad Stevens is the head man at Butler, Sean Miller is running things at Arizona and John Groce is fresh off piloting the Ohio Bobcats to their second deep run into the NCAA tournament in three years.

Which may explain why Illinois is so interested in Groce. Illinois athletic director Mike Thomas had initially targeted Stevens, but Stevens and Butler put out a release saying, "We're cool," leading the Illini to continue discussions with Groce.

If I'm Thomas, this is a no-brainer after whiffing on Shaka Smart. Groce is an amazing talent and he's young, so wherever he lands will have a plan for relevance in the long run.

The position will be the second big hire Davis will make after jumping from Cincinnati to Champaign in August. His new football coach, Tim has extensive Ohio State connections, both to Jim Tressel and Urban Meyer, so why not double-down. It can't be worse than the refugee camp Bill Martin set up in Ann Arbor for wayward West Virginia coaches (though I'll concede Beilein is legit).

JERRY FRANCIS BRINGS IT HOME FOR PICKERINGTON. Pickerington Central captured the school's first-ever boy's basketball state championship over the weekend, defeating Toledo Whitmer 45-40 and the victory had a bonus Ohio State over Michigan University kicker to it.

Not only are the Tigers coached by former Buckeye great Jerry Francis, but the turning point in the game came when Jae'Sean Tate, son of former Buckeye hoopster Jermaine Tate, wrestled a loose ball away from Michigan commit Chris Wormley and scored with 1:13 remaining to put the Tigers up three.


MINOR ANNOUNCEMENTS THAT WILL LEAD TO BIGGER ANNOUNCEMENTS. We are in the final days of our Respect the Basement fundraiser and once again, I'd like to thank everyone that has contributed. I can't say enough about how much we appreciate it.

As I mentioned a few weeks ago, it looks like we'll be going ahead and posting a position to hire a full-time beat writer even though it doesn't appear as if we'll meet our fundraising goal. What will end up happening is that we'll just cut back on travel a bit and see where things take us. Again, thank you all very much. If you would still like to contribute, every little bit will help.

In other purely meta news, we'll be hosting an event after the spring game and we're in the process of locking down the details. We've arranged for a bar in the Short North to take us all in, and to provide discount double-checking drink wristbands for attendees. We'll have a charity component to the event, like a food drive or something similar, so hopefully you can make it out to meet with us, give back a little and have a great time.

We'll have full details shortly.

ETC: Buckeye fencers earn the program's fourth national championship (and third for the school this year)... Heavily recruited power forward Tony Parker will announce on April 11... Malik Zaire verbals to Notre Dame. It's surprising, but early... How the Saints bounty punishment would play in the NCAA (spoiler: not quite SMU, but close)... Minor League Guy is poised for a breakout campaign... There are 18 Starcraft 2 players making over $50 grand... Nice job, KU bookstore... Boston College be pervy.



Comments Show All Comments

buckeyedude's picture

Was saddened to see my alma mater, Whitmer, lose to Pickerington, as Whitmer has never gotten an OHSSA state title, either. 

I think Wies just cursed the Jayhawks. I like our chances.




chitown buckeye's picture

What years did you attend Whitmer? I am a Napoleon grad from 97'. Not sure if the GLL is still a league or not but I do know Napoleon is no longer a member.

"I'm having a heart attack!"

buckeyedude's picture

I'm quite a bit older than you Chitown. I'll just leave it at that.

And BuckeyefanJim, I hear what you're saying about Chris Wormley(MU commit), but I really would have liked to see my old high school finally win a state championship. You know how hard they are to get.

But, with my Buckeyes in the Final Four, I'm not feeling too bad. ;)



toledobuckeyefanjim's picture

As much as I wanted to see a Toledo high school team finally win the boy's D-1 basketball title, I couldn't find it in my mind and heart to root for a Whitmer kid who committed to that school up north of the border. If he was a Sparty or even an Illinois commit, I would have supported the local school.

rdubs's picture

Taco Charlton plays for Pick Central so ttun had one on each team...

FutureBuckeye's picture

I think I may be a bad luck charm. I went to Start High School my junior year & the Lady Spartans made it to the states final four. I went to the game (we had a bus from Toledo to Columbus) & my senior year, I transferred to Whitmer (my family moved). I went to the state championship this past weekend & we lost. /sigh what can I do. As for Groce, I wish him the best in any decision he wishes to make. As for Weis, he guaranteed a victory, looks like we're moving on! /knock on wood

Hasbro's picture

And we get to beat the Buckeyes again!

A statement like that implies he has EVER been involved with a team to beat OSU. Must be referring to the bowl of chocolate-covered peanut butter on his secretary's desk.


buckeyechad's picture

The thought if Ravenel announcing he's leaving early while sully stays makes me chuckle

Ethos's picture

In other news: Buford continues to ride on the coat tails of his teamates, while continuing to cast his "i'm better then I look" spell over Matta to keep his starting job.

"I spent 90 percent of my money on women and drink. The rest I wasted." - George Best

Buckeye in Illini country's picture

Who would you rather have on the court?  No one on our bench can replace him for an extended period of time with the same value.

Columbus to Pasadena: 35 hours.  "We're on a road trip through the desert looking for strippers and cocaine... and Rose Bowl wins!"

Ethos's picture

DT to 3, Amir in DT's spot.  Buford Bench.

"I spent 90 percent of my money on women and drink. The rest I wasted." - George Best

William's picture

Wouldn't you want to put Amir at the 5, Sully at the 4, and DT at the 3?

Ethos's picture

Whatever puts the least effective player currently on the starting roster on the bench.

"I spent 90 percent of my money on women and drink. The rest I wasted." - George Best

Brutus's picture

This.  We need to figure out a way to bury Buford on the bench for less talented and less experienced players.  It's a brilliant coaching move and one that no one would expect, especially during the Final Four.  Hopefully Matta is paying attention.

buckeyedude's picture

I disagree with you Ethos, on Buford. But this made me laugh  -----v

Sherbert is like Dry humping.  It's ok, but i'd rather have ice cream.




Run_Fido_Run's picture

Don't tell the Buckeyes players, but Kansas is the weakest of the Final Four. They were lucky to beat Purdue. They do play excellent defense, but as long as you keep them out of transition, they lack weapons in their half-court offensive sets.

Similar to playing against Syracuse, if Ohio State takes good care of the bball, they should be more efficient running their sets. But Kansas is not as disruptive or as talented as Syracuse, which was 2nd in the nation in turnover margin and one of the best dribble-drive teams you'll ever see.

There are two things that concern me about Kansas, though:

1. How do the Buckeyes guard and/or attack the twin tower combo of Robinson and Whithey? Sullinger will do just fine defensively against either of those two, but will that leave Tank guarding the other one? On offense, Whithey is a very good shot blocker and might give Sully problems. Ohio State's guards/SF probably will have to outplay their counterparts on KU and I think they can. 

2. Kansas has shown that they're great at locking down on D in the closing minutes of a game. Ohio State needs to get in control of the game, step on KU's necks, not get into late-game situations against a team that seems to play better as they game goes along.  

RedStorm45's picture

Would love to see Craft-Smith-Thomas-Sully-Amir for a few minutes each half to mix it up.  Unfortunately, Thad won't move D.T. to the 3 in place of Buford.

Run_Fido_Run's picture

Maybe, but matchup issues often work both ways: how do either Robinson or Whithey guard Tank on the outside?

With both Amir and Sully, they might have to run different offensive sets than they usually practice, etc.

They'd want to use both Sully and Amir when that line-up gives them an advantage both offensively and defensively and I'm not sure that'd be the case against KU.

RC's picture

You are kidding yourself if you think Kansas is the weakest of the Final Four teams.  Kansas would beat Louisville 3 of 4 times.  Also, Kansas is just as disruptive and more talented than Syracuse.  They hold teams to a lower FG % and shoot at a higher % than does Syracuse on the season.  Also, Kansas has a shot blocker in the middle that Syracuse lacked without Fab Melo.  I think this is a pretty evenly matched game, and as a fan of both I will just sit back and enjoy it.  

Run_Fido_Run's picture

I should have been more specific: I meant that Syracuse was more disruptive in causing turnovers. Syracuse was 2nd in turnover margin and caused 591 TOs this year, whereas Kansas was 136th in TO margin while causing 510 TOs. Both Syracuse and KU are most effective offensively when running transition.

Ohio State had only 11 TOs against Syracuse and most of those were not the types that could be turned into transition baskets; moreover, Ohio State out RB'd Syracuse 37-22 and, for the most part, did a good job getting back on D in a hurry. Thus, the Buckeyes forced Syracuse to play half-court and held one of the better dribble-drive teams you'll see to 41-percent shooting (Syracuse was 43rd in FG percentage this year).

KU is even better in FG percentage, but not as good as Syracuse at TO opponents. If Ohio State takes good care of the ball, KU's only opportunities for transition will be off missed shots. KU is a very good rebounding team. But you which other team is as well? Ohio State.

Btw, if you read beyond my first line (above), you'll see that I was concerned that "Kansas has a shot blocker" and I'm fully capable of enjoying the game without believing that KU "would beat Louisville 3 out of 4 times."    

RC's picture

All good points you make.  But I do have a question. If you had your choice of the three other teams in the Final 4 for OSU to play in the first game, would you honestly choose Kansas instead of Louisville?

btalbert25's picture

If you are going to say based on the season would you rather play them, you would pick UofL, if you would say based on how they've played in march, I'd rather play Kansas.  I never am comfortable playing a team on a roll in the tournament, especially when they have a coach like Pitino. 

Run_Fido_Run's picture

Albert is right. He knows, from previous threads, that I would have preferred Ohio State to play Louisville all day compared to KU before the tournament, but then Louisville turned out to play arguably the best defense of any team in the tournament (up to this point), while KU really should have lost to Purdue in the 2nd round, were about par with NC State, and were fortunate to catch UNC at the right time.

When I say that they're the weakest of the F4, though, they're still a very good team that is fully capable of beating the Buckeyes Saturday night and, if it's a close game late, KU has shown great tenacity in end-game situations. Although I feel KU kinda sneaked into the F4, they're still better than all but maybe 5-8 teams in the nation.  

Oakland Buckeye's picture

Thanks for trolling RC - nailed it Fido - I guarantee you the guys were cheering when KU won last night.

RC's picture

Trolling?  What part of what I said was trolling?  You need to learn what trolling means before making stupid statements.  I figured I'd give a unique perspective as a fan of both teams and I don't have a preference for who wins.  You can keep the blinders on and think that Kansas is a better matchup than UNC would have been for Ohio State but if I was solely a Buckeye fan I would have much rather played UNC.  UNC is soft and not as mentally tough and tested as is Kansas.  UNC doesn't play defense the way Kansas does.  That said, I think either way this is a 2 or 3 pt game and can't wait to watch it.

Idot08bojangles's picture

I can't tell you how happy your profile picture makes me.

Scarlet and Grey until the day I die.
idotter: September 27, 2008. OSU vs. Minnesota

Run_Fido_Run's picture

Go easy on Weis, he's just learning how to Twitter and, in his excitement, he made a typo. He meant to write:

Great job across the board. On to New Orleans! Congrats! And we get to eat the Buckeyes [those delicious chocolate and peanut butter treats] again!

Buckeyeneer's picture

Ha ha ha ha ha ha! Mmmmmmmm chocolate covered legumes, aahhhhhhhhhh

"Because the rules won't let you go for three." - Woody Hayes

THE Ohio State University

RedStorm45's picture

KU looked shaky in their 1st three games in the tourney.  Plus they needed a late 12-0 run to put away a UNC team who was playing its 3rd PG.  

btalbert25's picture

I know Carolina is immensely talented but they didn't have a PG.  They lost their backup early in the year and then obviously not having Marshall really hurt.  That game shouldn't have come down to the final 2 minutes.  The names were big, but both teams were lucky to be there, and I think beating UNC to make the final four, this season at least, doesn't mean as much as it normally would.

I would love for Louisville to win, just because it would burn these UK fans asses down here, but last night I was told Kansas was the only team left in the tournament who had a prayer of beating UK.  The same person said UK would beat Ohio State by 30.  I WOULD LOVE THAT MATCHUP.  They are in the final four, I know UK is close, but I still don't believe Cal can win a title.  I hope Louisville gets them, but I'd love to just walk around in my Scarlet and Gray after beating UK in the title game, and listenning to all these fans bitching about how it was a fluke, the refs gave them the game, or Ohio State got lucky.  Those crocodile tears would be tasty.

William's picture

I don't think UK is the juggernaut everyone thinks they are. Anthony Davis can get in foul trouble quickly, and if he does, they have no one to stop Sullinger inside. The one player I'm worried about on Kentucky is Darius Miller, that guy can shoot, and if he goes off I think we'd have a hard time of beating UK. As for Teague, I think Craft would absolutely dismantle him. 

Adamant73's picture

Hold on William! UK looked pretty good to me and I'd put them as the heavy favorite to win it all. They present match-up problems for OSU or anyone. Not sure what you were watching but UK does everything pretty well. OSU would have to get everyone's A+ game in order to beat UK and not saying that isn't possible but not likely. Just my realistic opinion.

William's picture

UK's halfcourt offense isn't nearly as good as their transition game. Secondly they haven't faced a defense as good as ours with the exception of Louisville, which was a 7 point game, and Louisville was suffering from injuries I believe. We wouldn't need everyone's A+ game to beat them. If OSU slows the game down and makes UK play at their tempo, and forces them to run a halfcourt offense, I like our chances. However, if we choose to run with UK, we lose. If Baylor shoots better yesterday, they have a good shot of winning that game. 

btalbert25's picture

I would say Craft is better than Teague, but other than that, at every position UK may have an advantage over Ohio State.  Defensively, Sully will have trouble with Davis, and what happens if Sully gets early foul trouble again in that game?  Thomas won't be able to defend Terence Jones.  I have my doubts that Bufford can handle Gilchrest.  Lamb and Smith may be a push, but Lamb is a better shooter and scorer than Smith.

Quite honestly at almost every position UK has a talent advantage over anyone they play.  Davis, Gilchrest, and Jones are are capable of taking a game over on their own.  Lamb is a great shooter and he can drive to the basket too.  He could be a major contributor.  The only place I'd say Ohio State has a real advantage is at PG.  Every other position, is either a push or leans in UK's favor.  Gilchrest, Jones, and Davis all have a shot to be great NBA players, and honestly may all go in the top 10 of the NBA draft this year. 

All that being said, UK is not unbeatable, and I think Ohio State has the horses to do it, but Kentucky certainly is the Juggernaut everyone has made them out to be, the only team I thought had the same talent as UK was UNC.  Talent alone isn't enough to win though, as they showed 2 years ago when they clearly had more talent than anyone else on the court too.

Ohio States best chance would be for Craft to harrass Teague all night and Sully to get Davis into foul trouble.  If both Craft and Sully are the victims of quick whistles though, it could be a long night.


yrro's picture

As good as Davis is, I'm not that worried about him when it comes to Sully. Sullinger seems to struggle more with width and strength than pure height. I think that he can move Davis. I expect Davis to be more of a force in blocking shots on our dribble penetration than stopping Sully one on one. Whistles would be a big factor in that matchup, though.

acBuckeye's picture

Ummm, let's worry about Kansas first..... You know, they are pretty good.

Adamant73's picture

I agree about the match-ups. I'm not saying we can't beat UK but on paper they have advantages over OSU. I actually think the DT vs Jones match-up is more in out favor but that is about it. Stop UK transition, slow it down and we have to shoot at a high % and we can play with them. Kidd-Gilcrest is the guy that scares me the most aswell as Miller. We have to get by Kansas first but hard not to want to look ahead.

btalbert25's picture

Also, Miller, who you are worried about isn't even good enough to start.  That's right, he's UK's 6th best player.  Lamb is a bigger threat from outside than Miller even is, and Miller is great.  I think Ohio State can win, but let's not downplay what they'll be up against.  Kentucky is the best team in America.  One thing I'm interested to see though, is how Calipar blows it with this team.  He did it 2 years ago, he did it with Derek Rose, which that team was crazy talented, and he's done it with other Memphis teams. 

Nappy's picture

And let's not forget, we have to beat Kansas first.

I never saw a football player make a tackle with a smile on his face

btalbert25's picture

Absolutely, and they have to beat Louisville.  I just have a feeling both will happen.  . 

Run_Fido_Run's picture

I agree that UK is the most talented team and will be tough to beat.

They did, however, come out of the easiest region, while facing three teams that play well offensively but play relatively soft defense. According to Pomeroy, Iowa State rated 58th defensively; Indiana (62); Baylor (39).

Compare to the defensive rankings of Ohio State's and Louisville's opponents, respectively.

Ohio State: Gonzaga (34), UC (22), Syracuse (17).

Louisville: New Mexico (16), MSU (3), Florida (70).

You still gotta like UK to win it all, but they will be stepping up against a much higher level of defense against Louisville (1), possibly followed by Ohio State (2). We have to hope that UK goes into a funk, one time, which is all it takes to go home disappointed. 

btalbert25's picture

whoever they play is going to have to not turn the ball over and let them get out and run.  They are also going to have to shoot well.  Kentucky is a great defensive team.  I'm not disputing their competition, they've had an easy road to the final four.  Their conference was terrible too.  I thought they would be upset by now to be quite honest, but they've responded well and really not had many problems getting to this point. 

I would love for Louisville to beat them, I really would, but I just don't see it.  UK beat Louisville pretty easily last time they played this year, which was way back in December, and things are certainly different now.  You can never bet against Pitino the dude is an amazing coach, but I just don't think they have the horses.  Siva can definitely cause fits for Teague, and Dieng is rapidly becoming a great player and he's quite the load defensively as well.  So if Siva can force turnovers and Dieng stays out of foul trouble they can do it.  Plus they are on a run like UConn was last year.  They can do it, it's just a tall order. 

I really think Ohio State can beat them, I just don't think anyone should down play how good UK is.  They are really good.  They'll have 3 lottery picks and I'm guessing that Miller makes an NBA roster.  Teague one day will be an NBA player and I think Lamb has a shot too.  They have a ton of talent. I wasn't suggesting that no can beat them, or that Ohio State doesn't have a prayer.  Ohio State, more than anyone has the kind of team that can beat them.  I just think people are kidding themselves if they don't think Kentucky is as good as advertised.  

Adamant73's picture

Miller's size and the way he can get to the rim scares me. He plays great defense also.

pcon258's picture

I definitely like our chances. 

and is it just me or does charlie weis look alot like brady hoke. maybe its just because theyre both fat....

LABuckeye's picture

I always thought Charlie looked like the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man...

Run_Fido_Run's picture

Mr. Stay Puft has a much longer shelf-life than Weis.  

rdubs's picture

Weis is at least twice as big as Hoke, I am not even sure Weis can walk.  He may need a golf cart to coach games.  As of last year Hoke could still nip the banner that they touch when they run onto the field for home games.

German Buckeye's picture

So how is it people are making money (appears a pretty decent living) playing SC II?  I have the game, its fun and all, but really, making money at it?

Nappy's picture

Weis should shut his fat mouth.  Last time I checked we curb stomped ND in the Fiesta Bowl. 

I'm pumped for this game.  I think we have a good shot of beating Kansas but we'll need to continue to play suffocating defense.  Craft is unreal.  If we can keep them under 65 points, I like our chances. 

I never saw a football player make a tackle with a smile on his face

RedStorm45's picture

We've scored over 73 in every tournament game so far against a variety of defenses.  Looks like those offensive issues have been straightened out.  There's simply no way to prepare for Craft.  He and LZS up top create a lot of havoc for opposing teams.  We just lack a shot blocker in the middle (Amir?) but D.T. has stepped up this last month on that side of the ball.

Run_Fido_Run's picture

You're right, lately DT has been the Buckeyes' shot blocker, especially when kids named Mike Hart drive into the lane.    

neyvit's picture

I was curious about Groce, so I looked him up - and he is only 4 years younger than Matta (40 v. 44).  I would have never guessed that.

The fact that Matta is only 44 and has had so many seasons of sustained success (in Butler, Xavier, and OSU) is pretty amazing.  It's a damn shame that his back/foot problems will likely keep him from coaching as long as he would like to.

deadbuckeyeinthelake's picture

surfing and  saw this does anyone know this  guy?

"Give me Liberty, or Give me Death!"

NC_Buckeye's picture

He's a long-time commentor at Off-Tackle Empire (B1G football blog) and BT Powerhouse (B1G basketball blog). He's legit.

Don't know him personally though.

acBuckeye's picture

Deep down Boeheim KNOWS the refs didn't cost his team the game. That's why he only made a little "slight" in his comments. He should be thanking the refs for keeping that game as close as it was. TWICE in the first half his team benefitted from two phantom foul calls, the first of which sent Sully to the bench. Totally different game if Sully stays in. The second one nearly sent me over the edge.... where the Syracuse player got hung on the rim and the refs called Thompson for a push b/c they saw the dude crash to the ground like a moron. I can't believe everyone on here is barely mentioning this. If we'd have lost, everyone would have been griping about it. Those refs should be reprimanded for that awful job they did. I know we shot more FT's, but i feel like we still won DESPITE the officials.

Speaking of Thompson.... who else came out of their seats when he had that monster throw down!! Wow!! The freaking play of the game and the yoyo's at CBS almost missed it, THEN don't even bother to show a replay..... WTH?? (thank you, rewind button)

Moving on.... I thought Zaire was a Buckeye lock?

btalbert25's picture

Boeheim had no right to criticizing the officials anyway.  He should be thanking them, if not for terrible officiating, they likely don't advance beyond the first round.

OSUNeedles's picture

That officiating was so bad, it would still be getting attention if we lost, especially with Sully missing so much time. There were plenty of calls where I was pissed off for Syracuse, & obviously plenty for us, but I felt they sucked quite evenly.

faux_maestro's picture

Also, most of the free-throw differential was due to them fouling us under 2 minutes.

Your mom told me she wants a Dicken Cidar.

nickma71's picture

For you fans of mid-major-free Final Fours, this must be heaven.

Nah. But it was nice to see Duke not have a joke of a bracket like they usually do.

buckeyeEddie27's picture

Totally off topic here but.....who remembers the Final Four mini-basket balls pizza-hut used to give out?  My 10yr old self really wants one right now!  Go Bucks!

I know there's a game Saturday, and my ass will be there.

Buckeyeneer's picture

Man, I really want to go search my parent's basement now.

"Because the rules won't let you go for three." - Woody Hayes

THE Ohio State University

Triv's picture

Not saying Sully is staying, but a reporter asked him about that statement about Amir. When asked if that meant he was definitely leaving he said no, and also used the phrase when WE start spring practice. Wishful thinking? Probably. But not 100% out of the picture

Sorry Urban, Woody is still my favorite

btalbert25's picture

I try not to get too excited about comments like this, but honestly another year may actually improve his draft stock.  There are several guys who will play similar positions in the NBA  that may be more attractive to draft than him.  Thomas Robinson and Terence Jones just to name 2.  Honestly, maybe even Deshawn Thomas would get drafted ahead of Sully at this point.  Maybe not, but I wouldn't be shocked. 

I'd also think it would be AWESOME if the guys won it this year and got together and said you know what, we'll be able to win it again next year if we all come back.  Amir could be center, Sully could play the four, Deshawn "small forward" then Craft and Lenzelle at guard.  Then you bring Scott and Ross off the bench, because I believe Ross will be good eventually.  Wow, that would be a scary good team.

Doc's picture

Hey, stranger things have happened.

CJDPHoS Member

The Official DDS of 11W

btalbert25's picture

I don't know Thomas' family situation but Sully doesn't have to go out of neccessity.  I think back to that Florida team a few years back and all but one of those kids really needed to bolt family wise, but he stuck it out one more year too.  It would be great to see both come back, but I won't hold me breath to either one coming back.

Doc's picture

Having them both back would really be great.  DT is gone imho.  He has been a beast in the tourney, much like Mike Conley was when he decided to bolt.  They could fool us, but I'm not going to bet on it.

CJDPHoS Member

The Official DDS of 11W

RBuck's picture

I actually think that Sully has a better chance of staying than Thomas. If he does, I look for a starting lineup of Williams, Sully(4), Ross(3), Smith and Craft. If Sully and Thomas both leave insert Scott instead.

Long live the southend.

Squirrel Master's picture

so if Sully leaves, you are saying the starters should be Craft,Scott,Smith,Ross,williams? Not sure I understand.

I saw a UFO told me to have a goodyear!

Squirrel Master's picture

No way would Thomas get drafted above Sully! Lets not get too overzealous about Thomas. He is a great talent and I personally feel he should be a lottery pick but scouts have looked at him extensively. Thomas is a SF in the NBA, no way he could compete against Dirk, Bosh, Griffin at PF. I think he would fair better against Lebron, Carmelo and such. Sully has a certain skill set as a low post scorer. He is coveted in the NBA and really isn't that overweight plodding PF. I don't agree that Sully is like Glen Davis. I think he is more of a Charles Barkley type of player.

Not sure if Sully leaves or not. I think thomas is gone. I really think the lineup next year if Sully stays is PG-Craft,SG-Thompson,SF-Ross,PF-Sully,C-Amir. Smith is great but Thompson will surpass him with a full offseason after his freshman year. Smith will be that sniper coming off the bench.

I saw a UFO told me to have a goodyear!

btalbert25's picture

I'm not getting overzealous, he's playing really good right now, he's showing that he has a lot of tools, and he has a really high ceiling, where he could get a lot better.  Sully is great, I'm not disputing that, I just wonder how much improving he has left to do.  I honestly, think another off season getting into better shape and working on his game again could put him back as a top 2 or 3 pick like he would of been last year.

I don't think he he'd go top 5 after this season.  I think there are 3 guys from UK who would go before him and maybe a couple off of Carolina.  Just looking at guys who may declare.  I don't think Thomas will go that high either, but I really don't think the difference in draft position would be much.

Squirrel Master's picture

I saw a UFO told me to have a goodyear!

PharmBuck's picture

FWIW Chad Ford has Thomas ranked 41st on his big board that was updated today. If he is looking at a 2nd round pick he would be better served to return next year. Sullinger is 9th or 10th I believe. Buford was somewhere after Thomas.

"You're pissed because we went after a committed guy? Guess what, we got 9 guys who better go do it again," said Meyer. "Do it a little harder next time."

osubuckeye4life's picture

Saturday can't get here soon enough! It's going to be one hell of game. As Woody would say, "Anything easy aint worth a damn!" GO BUCKS!


If Illinois is smart they will hire Groce. Just look at Thad's other disciples. 


It would be great if we can land Parker. 


What happended with Malik?