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Ohio State Basketball Forum

Ohio State men's and women's basketball discussion.

Providing a little hope for our potential matchup with Syracuse's zone

JakeBuckeye's picture
March 17, 2014 at 7:01pm

A lot of the talk that we don't have much of a chance against Syracuse's zone (me included in this talk) is centered around the idea that we don't have the outside shooters to beat their zone.

I looked back at our 2012 matchup in the Elite 8, however, and found the stats surprising. That game we shot 4-13 from 3 point range (30.8%), which is not a very good percentage and one that I think our current team can at least equal.

Even more interesting, did you know who made three of those four 3 pointers? A guy we still have on the team, Lenzelle Smith Jr.! He'll have to step up if Syracuse and Ohio State both advance.

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kevdale86's picture

If we were to shoot the percentages we just shot against Michigan, while making a few free throws at the end, we could totally beat Syracuse. They're far from an offensive juggernaut, so it would be a defensive battle. A game that we could win by getting the ball in the high post against the zone and hitting some intermediate jumpers. Don't just stand out there and chuck up 3's all game long. A month and a half ago I wouldn't have thought that beating Syracuse was possible. We just have to get past Dayton first and then see what happens.

+1 HS
JakeBuckeye's picture

Agreed. For the first time since 2009, we have reason to be nervous for our 1st round matchup.

+1 HS
MacG91's picture

Q is going to have to find a way to slash through that zone. If he can that will make their life so much easier. 


+1 HS
RBuck's picture

I don't think Q is going to have an easy time slashing through their zone.

IMO, Q needs to post up at the top of the key, have the zone collapse on him and dish it off underneath or outside.

Long live the southend.

KBonay's picture

Forget the 3's...this team can't hit 'em.  Q and LSJ were 0-9 combined against Michigan.  As for the zone, i'm baffled as to why this team can get Q the ball at the foul line on a catch & shoot during the D's rotation.  It's the sweet spot and Q can stoke it from there.  And that plays into his strength....catch & shoot.

+1 HS
JakeBuckeye's picture

That was the whole point of this post, to show that we may not need the outside shooting as much as we think against Syracuse's zone. By no means was I implying that this team does anything more from the outside than struggle.

+1 HS
rosycheeks's picture

The Bucks picked apart the Cuse zone last time with a great high-low combo of Thomas and Sullinger. It's questionable whether we have the high now, and we most certainly don't have the low.

+1 HS
The Rill Dill's picture

Solution to beating the zone:  Q


He is heating up, too.

mrspray's picture

Teams are solving the 2-3 zone - they're doing so by getting someone offensively minded and aggressive enough (but not overly-aggressive) in the middle. Deshaun Thomas did it two years ago, and Q is clearly the guy for it right now… Assuming this game actually gets played :)

In case you're curious, it's Mr. Spray

brandonbauer87's picture

I think we're just as much trouble for Syracuse as they are for us. I won't call it an automatic win, but I don't think it's an unfavorable matchup. 

Mortc15's picture

You rarely need outside shooting to beat a zone. It's all about finding the holes in the defense. Every zone has them. But everyone is definitely right, if Q isn't knocking down the 10-15 foot jumpers, it'll be a long game. Cuse has serious trouble scoring at times too though and no one's defense is better than OSU. Assuming both make it there, should be a fun game.


+1 HS
vitaminB's picture

We need to play more press.  When we press we tend to get back into games.  I'd rotate Craft and Scott (Matta plays them together too much for my liking) and keep them fresh and just press for most of the game. Transition layups seem to be our best offensive weapon.

+1 HS