Sloppy Play Late Dooms Buckeyes In Home Loss to Iowa

By Kyle Rowland on January 12, 2014 at 3:40p
73 Comments
Aaron Craft fouled out. Ohio State lost to Iowa. The end is nigh.

As the wintry mix in Central Ohio went through a constant melt in recent days, Ohio State vowed that it wouldn’t let a midweek loss at Michigan State form into an avalanche. But a hungry Iowa team seeking a signature win delivered a clutch performance down the stretch and left the Buckeyes reeling.

Ohio State had only lost back-to-back games twice since the 2008-09 season. Recovering from poor showings has become the norm for a team that’s a yearly contender in the Big Ten championship race. Starting the 2013-14 season 2-2 doesn’t mesh with the Buckeyes’ plans for a sixth regular-season conference title under Thad Matta.

The 20th-ranked Hawkeyes overcame a nine-point second-half deficit to beat Ohio State 84-74. They ended the game on a 22-9 run, erasing a 65-62 OSU advantage with five minutes left.

After a dismal outing at Michigan State, LaQuinton Ross paced the No. 3 Buckeyes with 22 points, seven rebounds and three assists. But during a crucial sequence late in the second half, Ross went air ball, turnover, turnover on consecutive possessions, earning him a seat on the bench.

Amir Williams had 11 points and six rebounds, and Lenzelle Smith Jr. finished with 10 points.

Roy Devyn Marble scored a game-high tying 22 points for Iowa, Ohio native Aaron White added 19, Melsahn Besabe recorded 11 points and 10 rebounds, Mike Gesell scored 11 points and Jarrod Uthoff contributed 10 points. It was the Hawkeyes’ first win over Ohio State in eight games and their first in Columbus in a decade.

Turnovers plagued the Buckeyes for the second straight game. Uncharacteristic mistakes during crunch time contributed to their 17 turnovers. Iowa scored 27 points off those miscues.

“I don’t think you can look at anything in particular with that stat,” Iowa head coach Fran McCaffery said. “We played a lot of zone and Michigan State plays a different type of defense from us.”

Said Aaron Craft: “I don’t think we were talking the way we normally do. There are a few things we need to get corrected and it will not get any easier coming up on the road for us. There is a lot to be learned from this game.”

The Hawkeyes entered the game owning the No. 8 scoring offense in the country, averaging 86.5 points per game. They were held under that mark Sunday, but an 84-point output against Ohio State’s vaunted defense is one of the most impressive offensive performances of the season. Michigan State’s 72 points, which came in overtime, were the most on the Buckeyes all year.

“We tried to utilize spacing as best as we could because we really wanted to keep them spaced,” McCaffery said. “Ohio State is going to take advantage with their quickness and they are really good at getting steals. For us, we wanted a great offense going into this game.”

Ohio State trailed 37-35 at halftime after allowing Iowa to score 30 points in the paint. The Hawkeyes added an additional 14 points in the paint during the second half. What was even more detrimental, though, were Iowa’s four three-pointers. Three of those 3s came when the Buckeyes held a nine-point lead midway through the half. They used a 15-3 spurt to grab the lead. 

It quickly evaporated, with the Hawkeyes scoring nearly 30 points over the game’s final 10 minutes. It outscored OSU 40-21 during the final 12:29.

Trailing in the closing minutes, Craft was his pesky self – creating turnovers. But he missed two of three free throws, which put a damper on Ohio State’s comeback chances. He fouled out with six points, six assists, three steals and six turnovers. The Buckeyes were -19 with Craft on the floor.

Ohio State was outrebounded 40-31 and only forced 10 Iowa turnovers.

Now the Buckeyes must regroup and try to avoid a third consecutive loss after beginning the season 15-0. A trip to Williams Arena to take on Minnesota isn’t what many would call ideal.

“We were in this exact same position last year,” Matta said. “The biggest challenge is making sure our minds are where they need to be in order for us to get better. We’re so far from the end of the finish line and to panic is something I won’t do and have never done.”

73 Comments

Comments

Seattle Linga's picture

Let's give Iowa some credit here - they out played us and took us out of what we do well. They also hit the open shots in the 2nd half when it mattered.

Nutinpa's picture

Agree that Iowa deserves credit.  "Breakthrough" win for them.  Now? Some legitimate concern about a Buckeye team, on National TV at home, played without a lot of excitement. Buckeyes' inability to shoot from outside doomed them.  LSJ reverting to last year's brick laying from the arc.  Craft and Scott (Shannon sleep walked the entire game) combined for 8 points. In the modern game...that won't cut it.
On the one hand, the season is young...no need to over-react.  OTOH....the previously unspoken worries that this team was way over-rated may be coming to reality.

Seattle Linga's picture

Agreed about sleepwalking but I say that is more on the offensive side. Craft still made it a frustrating day for Iowa with his defense

WC Buckeye's picture

Agreed, but his turnovers were fatal.

The only thing that's new in the world is the history that we have forgotten.

Knarcisi's picture

The struggles offensively are not a surprise. The turnovers, lack of blocking out and transition defense are. 

JozyMozy's picture

There'll be better days.

Mute's picture

OSU's offense turns into Indiana whenever anyone plays zone

mr.green's picture

Nice win for the Hawkeyes. (I hate typing that).
 
 

ibuck's picture

The Buckeyes need to figure out how to score against zone defense or they're doomed.
And taking care of the ball too.

Our honor defend, we will fight to the end !

If you can't win your conference, just quietly accept your non-playoff bowl game.

Deadly Nuts's picture

We need another John Diebler.

LEBRON

Seattle Linga's picture

You can add William Big Dog Bufford to that list

InvertMyVeer's picture

Wish Jordan Sibert hadn't transferred could definitely use his sharpshooting skills

Football is complicated...

skid21's picture

Iowa played a great game and I give them tons of credit but I was confused by Matta's sub pattern. The team never got into a rhythm and guys who were taking terrible shots stayed in the game.

allbucksallthetime's picture

Iowa is a very skilled team and played well.  The Buckeyes made far too many mistakes down the stretch.  It's just one loss in the grand scheme of things and the team that wins the B1G will lose 4 or 5 most likely.
The Buckeyes can't afford to slip up this week and get 3 back in the loss column, so the next two road games this week are now must win games.  Go Bucks!

buckeye4life050233's picture

Purely based on the fact Wisconsin only plays us and MSU once and both at home I'd say 2 or 3 losses is going to win the B1G this year

allbucksallthetime's picture

You make a very good point.  I forgot about how the B1G schedules were completed this year, so it is less likely the usual 4 or 5 losses will be good enough and more likely that 2 or 3 losses could get a piece of the crown.  That makes these road games this week even more critical.  Go Bucks!

Buckeye Chuck's picture

I'd call it a rebuilding year, if we weren't starting two seniors and three juniors. 
Time for everyone to recalibrate their expectations for the season. 

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

mh277907's picture

I am not sure what is going on with Lenzelle. He came off the bench in the first half and missed two threes, a dunk, missed an assignment that led to a wide open 3 and missed a box out that led to another Iowa possession all in under 3 minutes.. I also don't understand how a team can be so lax with the ball. Unfortunately, the basketball and football teams are proving everyone outside of Ohio right- OSU is a good team that is not ready to play with the big boys.   

buckeyebobcat

Blackbeards Delight's picture

Reminds me a lot of the football team. The difference being the basketball squad will have a chance to improve with quality in conference opponents (possible the best in the NCAA). Nice too see both have better out of conference opponents in the future, especially football. An early season loss in football to a quality opponent can be overcome and is a better indicator of where your team stands. The same holds true for basketball, look at MSU's schedule since um forever. 

Crunchy Peanut Butter Bitches.

- Me

 

buckeye4life050233's picture

We got smoked in the paint and in transition.....too many times teams aren't afraid of our fastbreak they send 3 and 4 guys to the offensive boards and we give up way to many offensive boards and then that normally leads to an easy bucket one way or another.....Mike Kitts officiating crew didn't help either.  I love Matta but he needs to whine more like Mccaffery, crean, bo ryan and izzo.......they whine and get a ton of ticky tacky calls that effect how the opposition plays defense

ATXbucknut's picture

It's gotten pretty bad when the best thing to happen to OSU athletics over the past month is the women's hockey team's victory over #1 Minnesota. 

BME_Buckeye's picture

Did we rush the ice?

Look closely, because the closer you think you are, the less you will actually see.

 

RedStorm45's picture

Up 53-44 and Slam screws up a 4-on-1 fastbreak.  That opened the floodgates.
 
You'd think we'd know how to run an offense against a zone...nope.  You'd think after the game at Sparty we'd learn to take care of the ball...nope.  After the first half maybe we'd learn to defend the paint...nope.

Nick's picture

The problem was defending the 3 they hit 3 in a row that closed the gap and never really recovered. I thought (despite what others said) Scott & Craft were in the game and everyone else seemed asleep, just like the crowd. I don't know how we get good recruits with that type of environment. 

Nutinpa's picture

And the crowd was supposed to go wild about what?
The sound of a basketball clanging off the rim from a missed 3 point shot....or what the hell, a missed shot from anywhere? 
The house was packed.  National CBS TV audience.  And this team looked about as excited as the football team did against Clemson in the first quarter.  And we blame the crowd.?
To be fair, you're not the only person complaining about the crowd.  But....what are some of you expecting?
A Brazilian soccer crowd? If the refs make a bad call...or if Sammy misses a dunk, the team gets trampled to death after the game.  WTF?

DefendYoungstown's picture

O Brasil são número um!  Ole, ole ole ole! 

What we can't do in the air we'll do on the ground.

FLAMikey's picture

Agree. I was at the game, and other than Craft, there was a lot of sleepwalking. Amir mesmerized by anyone with the ball who is moving at a detectable speed. Q and Loving looked disinterested unless they had the ball in their hands. Iowa's offense was a layup drill the whole first half, and OSU looked like a biddy league team seeing a zone for the first time.

Nick's picture

Get excited about a top 25 matchup? Give the Bucks home court advantage. A good portion of the crowd were old people or kids under 8 and most of them came late and left early.

lax20's picture

The Buckeyes are getting exposed!  No consistent scorer, soft post play and lack of an offense to deal with a zone defense.  Never could play against a zone defense, but the past 2 years we had a post player in Sullinger and a scorer in Thomas.  Defense helps, but need points to win.  This is not football that needs only 2 or 3 scores to win with defense.  Unfortunately, the biggest games for the Buckeyes in football and Basketball to date have resulted 0 for 4.  Pray that this is not a bad year for the programs.  Hoping the basketball team finds itself.

MilitaryBuckeye's picture

Fire Luke Fickell!
But seriously... If past years are any indication, this team will get better and be ready to compete come March. Only worry I've got is the lack of big man depth if/when Amir gets in foul trouble. Also, Amir's hands...

Buckeye Chuck's picture

Is it realistic to expect us to get that much better? We play one sophomore and one freshman.

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

MilitaryBuckeye's picture

I think so, even with the experience, we lost our "go-to" leading scorer from last year, Scott and Q are playing a new role as a starter, so is Thompson coming off the bench. I think the weaker schedule we played hasn't really challenged us enough to figure out who are go-to guys/plays are in crunch situations. More games against quality opponents should help the team improve (I stress on SHOULD). I believe that having an older team will help expedite the process... But the competition and adversity is what will make or break this team.

WC Buckeye's picture

Dude got 11 points today, but looked slow on defense, wasn't working to get open...just bad. Need more.

The only thing that's new in the world is the history that we have forgotten.

Whosisbrew's picture

I don't subscribe to the "Sleepwalking" excuse. This team is solid, and I'm sure they'll have a nice season, and get much better as it moves along. But I don't see the ceiling for this team going any higher than the Sweet Sixteen. The lack of legitimate scoring threats is periodically going to bite this team.

Buckeye Chuck's picture

I see a lot of complaints about the offense, but we allowed 40 points in the last 12:37. Even accounting for the free throws Iowa made down the stretch because we were forced to foul, that's just shockingly poor.
In fact, just doing a quick look through the results of recent seasons, I think 74 points is the most we've scored in a home loss in any game of the Matta era, which should give an idea of how bad the defense was.

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

OSUFlash's picture

Amir Williams is a liability out there. Weak defensively and still cant cleanly catch a freakin pass. McDonald all American is laughable.

osuflash

ibuck's picture

Big Disagree with you Flash. Amir is a lot better this year, and seems to be continually improving. He's playing good D and helping on offense. Without him, Iowa would have won by 20 or more.
The McD AA was a high school honor; it doesn't guarantee you'll excel at the next level, just like other great Buckeyes, like Oden, Lighty, Diebler or the Tank, haven't excelled in the pros. 

Our honor defend, we will fight to the end !

If you can't win your conference, just quietly accept your non-playoff bowl game.

Knarcisi's picture

Disagree. He does NOT play good D. A lot of the easy lane points were rights at him. He is soft. 

Nick's picture

Amir is a lot better this year but he needs to gain about 30lbs and take yoga classes or ballet or something. He makes things more difficult and awkward because he moves like a robot.

Knarcisi's picture

Kid needs a little snarl. They need to throw him in the cage with a pit bull. Either result, you're doing the kid a favor. Tongue in cheek comment, but get what I'm saying. 

FLAMikey's picture

wee-man could get a shot up on Amir if he drove across the lane. Amir has no lateral movement whatsoever.

ibuck's picture

Seems like Buckeyes start to coast when they get up a few points...just like in football. Matta will try to teach them you have to battle for a full 40 minutes, but will they listen?
I'd love to see more pluck in all the Buckeyes, like Scoonie Penn. 

pluck |plək|
courageous readiness to fight or continue against odds : dogged resolution; spirited courage and determination; guts

Our honor defend, we will fight to the end !

If you can't win your conference, just quietly accept your non-playoff bowl game.

BenedictineBuck's picture

I think this team is handcuffed by Williams generally lazy disposition out there. If  we had any sort of depth his ass would be parked on the end of the bench but since he's all we have size wise he kinda has free reign to play without any intensity.

Because we couldn't go for three!!!

ScarletNGrey01's picture

Way too soon to be pushing this ...

The will to win is not as important as the will to prepare to win. -- Woody Hayes

BenedictineBuck's picture

I disagree, TIME TO PANIC.......

Because we couldn't go for three!!!

jaxbuckeye's picture

So as a state employee, did Matta have to put in a request two weeks in advance for the vacation he took today? 

TLB's picture

Thad is one of the 10 best coaches in the NCAA.  

jaxbuckeye's picture

So what does that make Iowa's coach? 
Jerry Sloan was a heck of a coach too.  Think Utah fans would trade 1 year of losing for ONE championship?

MilitaryBuckeye's picture

Respect your opinion but disagree with your comparison. Matta is definitely a coach that can win championships at Ohio State. Matta has turned this program around and made it elite. Multiple B1G champions and B1G Tourney championships. Only thing he's missing is a NCAA championship and those take time, luck, and multiple recruiting classes.. Look at Coach K, Self, Roy Williams and Jim Boehim. All needed a while to get their first and build their programs... It's much harder to win during March Madness! And he's consistently taken our buckeyes to at least the sweet 16.

jaxbuckeye's picture

I agree with everything you said.  He is definitely the best coach I've ever seen at tOSU for basketball.  I give him tons of credit for not only turning the program around but definitely making it one of the consistently best in college.  You are also right.  It is NOT easy to win a NC and you really need two things, time and luck.  In the grand scheme of things, there isn't much to be disappointed about.  They are winners.  But...
I like Matta.  I really do. It's just that games like this one drive me nuts.  I know I'll forget about it in a week and be back to believing they can win it all.  But, deep down, I'm concerned this year is going to end like nearly every one has in the past with the Bucks losing to a team in the tournament that I thought they should have beaten.  Maybe I'm a homer, but going back over the last few years, I think they should have beaten Wichita St, Kansas, Kentucky, Tennessee, Sienna...I even thought they should have beaten the Gators for the NC.  I would argue that last year's path to the championship was about as easy a path as they will EVER see...and they missed it.
It has been and will continue to be a concern for me that Matta's Buckeyes have no problems getting up for the good teams (@ Indiana on Sr night for example) but lay an egg to clearly inferior ones.  I will ALWAYS believe those loses are at the feet of the HC.

MilitaryBuckeye's picture

P.S: didn't DV you there... But here's an UV to counter it.

southernbuckeye's picture

this team simply is not that good. they can improve by the end of the season, but they just don't have a ton of talent on this team. hate to say it.....

TheShookster's picture

You can say what you want about the shot he took at the end of the MSU game, but Marc Loving (along with Craft) seem like they are the only people out there that don't play afraid at the end of the game, or ever.
I watched D'Angelo Russell play yesterday. That in itself makes me less sad about this loss

BenedictineBuck's picture

Yes, help is on the way. Theres gonna be a trade off.... we'll give up a little bit of defensive pressure but with Russell and Kam Williams, this team will have a whole different offensive identity next year. The key is gonna be incorporating a big man who actually gives a shit, seems like Amir Williams is uninterested when hes out there,

Because we couldn't go for three!!!

Bamabucknut's picture

I was stunned at OSU's lack of interior defense. Iowa scored most of its points in the paint.

PittBuckeye's picture

2 game losing streaks are becoming too common all of a sudden.

Deadly Nuts's picture

Fran McCaffery has B1G COY on lockdown.

LEBRON

Bucks43201's picture

I think Ferentz deserves it again.

"You win with people." - Woody Hayes

jaxbuckeye's picture

So let me get this straight.  I criticize Matta for this loss and I get a DV.  Someone else criticizes the players (you know, the 18-22 yr old amateurs that AREN'T being paid millions to show up everyday) and they get an UV? 
 
THAT'S BS!  Thad's a MAN!  He's 46 years old!
                   -Mike Gundy

Bucks43201's picture

You've probably got an downvote troll or two...I've got a few. It's funny, really.

"You win with people." - Woody Hayes

jaxbuckeye's picture

I was just having fun with it no.  No worries. 
I just find it funny that people are so willing to beat up what amounts to kids but say something even remotely critical of Matta(i.e. a grown ass man), and it's sacrilage. 
I like Matta but he needs to man up and state the obvious: this one's on him.  Absolutely no reason for this team to lose at home to Iowa.  They are light years better athletically.
As someone else stated, this team coasts once it gets a lead WAY too much.  Reminds me of Office Space, working just hard enough not to lose...
 

TLB's picture

Totally disagree. Iowa is big and athletic. They will make a nice run in the tourney.

jaxbuckeye's picture

Big and athletic?  I TOTALLY disagree with your disagreement.  They may be tall but they look very slow afoot.  They look like they've never hit a weight room in their lives and plod up and down the court.  Looks like the team that Frankenstein built. 

allbucksallthetime's picture

Iowa is also a very skilled team.  It seems like every player they put on the floor could dribble, pass, and shoot.  They are difficult to guard and played well today.  Go Bucks!

UrbanCulture's picture

Sam Thompsons 4 on 1 fast break fail could have been executed by a second grader 

funky123's picture

Probably the eye-opener this team needed.

RoyMunson's picture

They suck.
We have 2 points guards, neither of which can shoot.
A big man that can't catch a bounce pass and is the softest player on the team.
Sam Thompson whose offensive game has somehow regressed.
The only 3-point shooter is so slow on defense that you can't play him.
Our most skilled offensive player is mentally checked-out for 30 minutes a game.
 

HYDEYOKIDS's picture

The weakness of and ultimately the ceiling of this team was always the interior presence, both on offense and defense. Amir and Q need to up their D in the interior, and we need someone who can score in the post. Otherwise teams can continue to play zone effectively since right now we can only score from 3 and dribble drives to the basket.

ghalephoto's picture

We have no interior anything....offense, defense and if we don't hit 3's the defense simply sags.  We need another shooter opposite Ross and since that isn't happening this is going to be an up and down year.  Wisc will win the reg season based on their sched alone, not playing us and MSU on the road gives them 2 wins (probably) elsewhere.  Good news is in the Big Ten tourn they find a way to lose.

ScarletGray43157's picture

Loving needs to get more minutes.  

In old Ohio there's a team that's known throughout the land...

FLAMikey's picture

He will when he decides to consistently put a body on someone and close out on shooters. He got yanked several times today after not doing one or both.

2002osubuck's picture

The main issue was not playing our bench enough and keeping the rhythm on offense when guys were hot. When we rotated Loving and Della Valle in, they drove to basket gave us great energy and got us big leads twice. Matta kept the starters on the floor so long in the second half, they got tired and it caused a lot of mistakes. When we rotate the bench we play with a lot more energy and our D is a lot better. It also seemed like Ross, Loving and Amedeo were the only ones attacking the basket and getting fouls or easy layups. This team needs contributions from the bench and recognizing each game its gonna be different guys scoring, especially with the style of D we play.

GymClassHyro's picture

Just a thought, is there a reason we don't play zone like other teams do against us that works so effectively? We certainly have the length to do it. Would be very difficult to pass inside against us.