Ohio State Can't Overcome Poor Shooting in Loss at Indiana

By Kyle Rowland on March 2, 2014 at 6:00p
Hey Thad, who's in charge of teaching this team how to shoot free throws?
130 Comments

What happened? That’s the question being asked by many in Columbus and inside the Ohio State locker room. It seemed as if all was well after a lull in January.

  1 2 F
INDIANA 33 39 72
#22 OHIO STATE 25 39 64

Five losses in six games followed 15 consecutive wins. But then the Buckeyes won six of seven, patching up its resume and reputation. How quickly that’s all been forgotten. Losses at Penn State and Indiana have put Ohio State back in the crosshairs of critics.

Sunday’s 72-64 defeat to the Hoosiers dropped the Buckeyes to 9-8 in the Big Ten and out of fourth place in the standings. The top 4 receive a first-round bye in the conference tournament. Ohio State is now sixth, behind Nebraska and Iowa.

Lenzelle Smith Jr. and LaQuinton Ross led the 22nd-ranked Buckeyes (22-8, 9-8 Big Ten) with 19 points apiece. No other Ohio State player reached double figures. Aaron Craft tied the Big Ten career steals record, but finished just 2 of 11 from the field with three turnovers, six rebounds and four assists.

Indiana’s now beaten three ranked teams at home this season.

In the age of one-and-done phenoms, a missing freshman can make a significant impact on a game’s outcome. Indiana (17-12, 7-9) learned that Sunday afternoon in the beginning stages of its must-win contest against the Buckeyes.

Player MIN REB AST STL BLK TO PTS
WILLIAMS 22 7 0 0 2 2 6
ROSS 28 3 1 1 2 4 19
THOMPSON 33 2 0 0 2 1 4
CRAFT 40 6 4 3 0 3 7
SMITH JR. 31 5 0 1 0 1 19

The Hoosiers are approaching the NCAA Tournament bubble with a late-season surge, while the Buckeyes are once again mired in a slump. But without its first-year sensation Noah Vonleh, the Big Ten’s leading rebounder and a projected NBA lottery pick, Indiana’s chances seemed to diminish greatly before the opening tip.

It looked justified when Ohio State roared out to an eight-point lead in the first 10 minutes. The Buckeyes got the ball inside where Amir Williams didn’t have to worry about Vonleh and created offense off four Indiana turnovers in the opening four minutes.

The turning point came on a harmless missed shot and rebound midway through the first half. LaQuinton Ross and Austin Etheridge became tangled up going for the ball when Ross shoved Etheridge, drawing a technical foul. Ross sat the rest of the first half – a little more than four minutes – which coincided with a 21-5 run.

Ohio State converted two of eight field goal attempts, one of seven free throws and had three turnovers during the spurt. Indiana scored 16 straight points and led 33-25 at the half.

Williams and Trey McDonald were both on the bench with two fouls as well, nullifying any advantage Ohio State obtained with Vonleh’s absence.

The Buckeyes never led or tied the game in the second half. They pulled to within two on two occasions, but never scored the tying basket. Ohio State turned the ball over 14 times.

Threeless

Ohio State did not make a 3-point field goal against Indiana, going 0-11 from downtown.

The last time the Buckeyes failed to make a three in a game was Jan. 10, 2004, or 367 games ago.

Ugh.

Yogi Ferrell paced Indiana with 20 points, while Will Sheehey contributed 19.

Ohio State missed all 11 of its three-point attempts, the first time since January 2004 that the Buckeyes failed to make a 3, a span of 367 games. The Buckeyes were 14 of 23 from the free throw line. They had 14 total points from the three-pointers and free throws compared to 38 for the Hoosiers. Ohio State shot 42.4 percent from the field. But it had three prolonged field goal droughts totaling more than 12 minutes.

Offense was at a premium early. The teams started the game a combined 1-of-8 shooting from the field. Ohio State comically lost possession of the ball on the opening tip even though Williams had a sizable height advantage over Sheehey. Williams batted the ball over Craft’s head out of bounds. Two airballs and a missed dunk followed.

The Buckeyes missed more than 10 shots from point-blank range.

The loss is the second in a row for the Buckeyes, both coming on the road. They close out the regular season next Sunday against Michigan State on Senior Day at Value City Arena.

130 Comments

Comments

LABuckeye's picture

I just don't even know what to say at this point...

+4 HS
Seattle Linga's picture

Kind of like holding a 2, 5, 7, 8, and a 10 in poker - JUST FOLD 

+8 HS
Seattle Linga's picture

Sorry Bucks - you will always be my favorite College Basketball team - but you didn't bring it today

+1 HS
hodge's picture

At least Star Wars is on Spike, so the day's not a total loss.

+5 HS
TheShookster's picture

Thank you for this information.

+1 HS
gwalther's picture

Star Trek on BBC. 

Class of 2008

+1 HS
Bolt's picture

Bad Santa on Starz

-1 HS
Bolt's picture

Also, paint drying on the house next door.

+7 HS
AndyVance's picture

This is why I have my DVR set to record every episode of The Big Bang Theory on TBS. You always have 20-30 episodes in the can when you need a pick-me-up.

+1 HS
BHT's picture

Agreed. I am watching it right now. Episode 6 has just started.

ShowThemOhiosHere's picture

WWE Network. 'nuff said.

Class of 2010.

HolyBuckeye1093's picture

Ohio State has broken A LOT of really bad records this year.

+2 HS
Buckeyebrowny919's picture

Not a single 3... horrid FTs... horrible bball IQ. I keep thinking this team will wake up and I feel enraged every time I watch them. What a horrible swan song for Craft..who by the way can't help himself bc he can't put a basketball through a hoola hoop sized net.

To give anything less than your best, is to sacrifice the gift - Steve Prefontaine

+2 HS
740Bucks's picture

you can't polish a turd...

"My idea of a good hit is when the guy wakes up on the sidelines with train whistles blowing in his head." - Jack Tatum

+1 HS
SeattleBuckeye20614's picture

This team at the FT line...

 

+7 HS
TheNorthernBuckeye's picture

Clearly there were many missed opportunities in this game but if I was a player or coach I would've dropped the f bomb on every official on the final buzzer.  The piece of shit they call "officiating" was just embarrassing to watch.  Throughout the entire game our guys got raked, and jumped on through and over.

"You're an angry football team, and I'm proud to be your coach." - UFM

+4 HS
Bolt's picture

Very inconsistently called as well. At times they were letter people get hacked, slapped, etc. and at other times were calling touch fouls. That's the worst thing you can ever ask for from a bball official is inconsistency. No way to adjust your style of play accordingly.

tressel12's picture

The officiating was indeed horrendous in my opinion. I feel as if with the rule changes referees are anticipating calls against the defense which slows down the tempo of the game which hurts this Buckeye team in particular because they are the best when they can get out and run. One foul in particular that I recall is Craft's second foul where Craft "fouled" Yogi Ferrell when he drove to the sideline. It looked like to me that Craft was there doing what looked like fundamental defense with his hands up, moving his feet, and using the sideline as another defender. What more does a defender have to do?! Just terrible......

Because I couldn't go for three. -- Woody Hayes

+1 HS
harleymanjax's picture

I'm glad I didn't waste a sunny 76 degree Florida day watching that crap!

"Because I couldn't go for 3"

+2 HS
Arizona_Buckeye's picture

Seriously - does anybody, at this point in time, honestly believe this team deserves a spot in the NCAA tourney? 

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

+6 HS
bucksfan92's picture

Absolutely not!  They might get in due to their name, but this team does not deserve a bid in any way shape or form.

+1 HS
mr.green's picture

Not today, but over the course of the season? yes.

+1 HS
mr.green's picture

I mean, Sparty just lost to Illinois. 

Chief B1G Dump's picture

For the first year in a long time, I am not forced to take the Buckeyes all the way in my brackets.

Go Shockers?

+1 HS
Mute's picture

but they beat Iowa and Wisconsin when they went a combined 6-37 from 3! Clearly there must be something on this team!

+1 HS
Bolt's picture

I really, truly don't think we belong. Been so hard to watch this team this year. I know this is a down year for the program and we'll have better days to look forward to. It's not even just that they aren't that good, they're just so ugly doing it. Constant boneheaded plays every game, horrid shooting, underperforming players, etc. It's just been a season to total frustration. This team should be much better than this.

+2 HS
Arizona_Buckeye's picture

Exactly - as much as I want them to be as good as the beginning season hype and W/L record showed - it just isn't happening.  If we played quality opponents in the OOC run, I think we'd have several more numbers in the Loss column.  I really don't want to see them get their asses handed to them in the 1st round of the NCAA because the way they're playing - it would happen.
 

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

Zimmy07's picture

They're a lock for the final 4.  Of the NIT.

Seattle Linga's picture

So many thing to work on before the next game

bigbadbuck's picture

I think they can work all they want to on pretty much all and its not gonna get better.

 

Gentlemen, you can't fight in here its a war room

+2 HS
Tkebuck1's picture

Refs schemers...bucks plain suck. Craft is going out in a horribly pathetic fashion...really feel for the kid. Embarrasing performance almost every fame.

+2 HS
ibuck's picture

Craft's assist numbers would be a lot higher if he had teammates who could shoot.

I think these players have decent physical skills, but their psyches won't let them show it. Their atrocious shooting is a cause and a byproduct of this, and according to Matta, lingering thoughts of this cause lack of focus on the rest of their game.

Our honor defend, we will fight to the end !

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

Nutinpa's picture

I agree.  To complain about the officiating in this game is the ultimate in dishing out blame when you have nothing else to say.   

It entirely possible that this B-ball team has already won its last game of this season. 

TheNorthernBuckeye's picture

At least Craft can salvage himself on the football field after the season is done. ;)

"You're an angry football team, and I'm proud to be your coach." - UFM

bucksfan92's picture

Honestly when we lost at home to Iowa following the frantic comeback at MSU this season was doomed.  Clearly this is a very mentally weak team with no leadership.  I know people want to fawn all over Aaron Craft, but the dude just cannot lead a team.  He looked like a bad high school player out there the last 2 games.  He and Smith talked all off season about how this was their team and they were going to lead.  Well, you led the team to it's worst finish in the Thad Matta era.  Congratulations.  I will not be sad to see those 2 guys leave the program.  Let's just get the next 3 losses over with as soon as possible and move on to next year.

-4 HS
WC Buckeye's picture

 

In order to be a leader, one must have followers. No one is following Craft's or Smith's leadership, whereas in years prior, they did. Too many people focused on individual contributions this year = poor teamwork = inconsistent team. Amir Williams in particular needs to get his ass on the pine for the rest of the season. And where the hell was Sam Thompson yesterday?

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

-1 HS
3cent's picture

Nothing is ever Craft's fault 

-2 HS
3cent's picture

Oh oh, didn't you know Craft is off limits from criticism 

-1 HS
WC Buckeye's picture

That's definitely not what I said - he's turning the ball over, forcing bad shots, and has taken 10 steps backward in his offensive efficiency overall. I am saying, though, that in years past, either the mindset was different (Deshaun and Jared sure both seemed to pay attention, whereas it seems like the guys this year are just going through the motions) or it's all Craft's and Scott's fault this year. I don't think it's as much the latter as the former. The chemistry is lousy.

 

Oh, and of course we have a big with hands of stone. He's a liability when he's in there, and McDonald's still developing.

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

BSTP DeCon's picture

It has been a long time since I've seen a high school basketball game. Almost glad I broke that spell.

+1 HS
TheNorthernBuckeye's picture

On a real positive note: Kirk loved is visit in Cbus and I think I love him just as much.  Also everyone knows spring ball starts in less than 72 hours!!

"You're an angry football team, and I'm proud to be your coach." - UFM

+2 HS
ScarletGray43157's picture

Bucks cannot shoot the ball.  A decent zone defense will shut them down every time.  Have to play defense like mad to have a shot at a win.

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

topgun67's picture

craft maybe a good guy, smart and all, but i won't miss him.  he can't shoot.  no matter what else he brings, when you can't shoot the ball (which is name of the game), what else can i say. I won't miss Smith either.  Ross - indifferent.  he surely is smooth in some parts of the 40 min game.. key being some spots and not entire 40 min.  in recent years, OSU BB has never been this boring and frustrating.  Perhaps it will change in a couple of years.  I don't see how we can be top tier next year - w/ all the freshmen....

 

+3 HS
el duderino's picture

Yeah, you're right. There's never been a top tier team with lots of freshmen. (With apologies for the last link... Just proving a point, not saying anything about liking the team...)

"This is a very complicated case: a lot of ins, lot of outs, lot of what-have-yous."

youngcroc's picture

The year we went to championship was majority freshman.

rosycheeks's picture

It's only right that this team broke the 3 pointer steak. Jon Diebler has heartburn right now. Geez, even Tony Stockman has heartburn.

+2 HS
GoBucksOSU's picture

This team is just way too hard to watch. How can a team not make a single 3 pointer in 40 minutes of game time?

+2 HS
Youngbuck85's picture

Enough is enough! I'm damn tired of letting luke fickell play our corners so far off the ball! Where's the aggressiveness on defense! Braxton and Carlos can only do so much!

+8 HS
BeijingBucks's picture

Ha. Go back to delivering pizzas…

 

 

None can love freedom heartily, but good men; the rest love not freedom, but license. ~ John Milton

+1 HS
BeijingBucks's picture

Ha. Go back to delivering pizzas…

edit: mobile platform never seems to like me and too easy double post 

 

 

None can love freedom heartily, but good men; the rest love not freedom, but license. ~ John Milton

TheShookster's picture

Maybe this team makes a deep tourney run and shocks everyone. But seriously, next year can't come soon enough. Even PJ Hill and Jeremy and fricking Anthony Crater never shot the ball THIS BAD. It's frustrating man...but gotta keep the faith

+2 HS
ScarletNGrey01's picture

 

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

+4 HS
TheSpiteHouse's picture

Tom Petty approves.

+3 HS
Seattle Linga's picture

It's 6:50 PM EST and .........................

BME_Buckeye's picture

Michigan won the Big Ten. 

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

 

+2 HS
Bolt's picture

We still suck?

+2 HS
jaxbuckeye's picture

I love how all these comments tear into Craft, a guy that may not be able to shoot but who brings it every single game and leaves it all out there on the court.  You have the nerve to blame him for every failure when he is but one player in a team sport.  Not one single person mentions the guy who is paid MILLIONS to recruit the players, teach the players, develop the players, develop the scheme, and coach the players during the game.  Clearly he is not to blame for the product on the court.  You people are pathetic.

-10 HS
Buckeyebrowny919's picture

And the award for easiest downvote of the day goes to....

To give anything less than your best, is to sacrifice the gift - Steve Prefontaine

+2 HS
jaxbuckeye's picture

Why is it the easiest downvote?  Because I don't like people who are saying things like "can't wait for him to go" when he's give four years to this program?  I don't like people criticizing his one weakness when they likely couldn't make it two times up the court with him?  Because I think it's wrong to criticize an amateur when you have a professional coach that gets zero criticism from the kool-aid drinking fan base?  Fine, vote away.  But, I know there is a minority that agrees with me.  Unfortunately the rest bully them into silence.

+1 HS
Bolt's picture

I've seen like one or two people harshly criticize Craft and only one say he can't wait for him to move on prior to your post (I haven't yet read any further below). If anyone in this equation takes a beat down regularly from the vocal minority it is Matta, unjustified or not. You were easy to downvote because we all love Craft and you made it seem as though you were attacking us fans generally for the remarks of one or two people and being aggressive and calling people pathetic. Rest assured though my man, the majority is indeed with you, not the minority.

Mr. Slick's picture

Because you called them pathetic.

 

Your point is a good one - make it (as you did) and don't make it personal. 

+2 HS
jaxbuckeye's picture

Yeah I didn't exactly come across the way I intended. My apologies to all! We are all on the same side (and FRUSTRATED!!!!)

+2 HS
jaxbuckeye's picture

I agree there weren't THAT many digs on Craft but even one is one too many. 

-1 HS
Bolt's picture

For sure. I don't think I can have a serious conversation with anyone who says they can't wait for Craft to be gone. 

+1 HS
Buckeyebrowny919's picture

No one in their right mind should want Craft gone. Should they consider he work on his shooting? Absolutely. As it has been stated, your point was solid, but it was the way you approached it.

+1 on another of your comments to balance out your rageface post.

To give anything less than your best, is to sacrifice the gift - Steve Prefontaine

Bolt's picture

The hell are you talking about? Who all is tearing into Craft? 

 

signed,

us people, who are apparently pathetic.

-2 HS
jaxbuckeye's picture

Maybe you need to learn to read.  I am referring to posts that say Craft can't lead a team, pathetic way for him to go out, he may be a good guy but not going to miss him, etc.  Again, reading comprehension.  My "pathetic" comment was directed at THOSE people.

-7 HS
Bolt's picture

I think I saw maybe one person say anything along those lines...in a thread fullll of dozens of posts in which 99% of people we not making disparaging remarks toward Craft. Maybe if you knew what you were doing you'd reply directly to THAT person. Classic burn with the "maybe you need to learn to read" though. Maybe you should go elsewhere or at least figure out how to click the reply button if you disagree with an individual.

+2 HS
jaxbuckeye's picture

Bolt, apologize for the tone and content of my post. It was immature and condescending. I need to learn to control my emotions and stop with the hyperbole. We are all on the same side and root for the good guys!  Next year's talent will help tremendously.  Myles Turner come on down!!!!

+1 HS
Bolt's picture

aw, hell nothin' personal. I was being a smart ass myself. My apologies as well, we're all frustrated after a game like that. We can most definitely chalk this up as a frustrating year and a down year of the Thad era...just hoping they can pull something magical out of their asses to send Craft and Lenzelle out in style this March.

TLB's picture

We all know you don't like Thad, you let us know after every loss.  But the records don't lie. He is the best thing to happen to tOSU basketball since Fred Taylor.  If you want him replaced, offer up some realistic suggestions.

 

+5 HS
jaxbuckeye's picture

That's the thing. Everyone equates criticism for not liking. In fact I DO like Matta and am glad we have him. But when you are untouchable you fail to self critique. He needs to feel some heat so ultimately HE solves the problem instead of taking the easy way out and blaming the players. 

Of course it's the players. But he's the one that put together the team and he's paid millions to develop them. So develop them. As much as I hate the Wisconsin coach, he gets a lot out of players far inferior to Matta's McD all Americans. Coaching is more than recruiting. 

 

 

TLB's picture

One less than elite year after 2 early departures the past couple of years doesn't warrant panic.  There have also been several assistant coaches leave the in the past few years so there is a loss of continuity.   If we see the same next year, then more scrutiny will be warranted.  Until then, enjoy the only team to make the sweet 16 the past 4 years.

ibuck's picture

the Wisconsin coach...gets a lot out of players far inferior to Matta's McD all Americans. 

With lesser players, a coach is less likely to have to chip away at the wall of entitlement the highest ranked players sometimes have. That time can be spent better at moulding them into concepts, better techniques, team play and their roles. 

Our honor defend, we will fight to the end !

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

+1 HS
jaxbuckeye's picture

I get what you're saying and there is truth to that. Dealing with players leaving early has to suck, but this is when Matta earns that salary. I'm frustrated to watch half the first half gone before we attack the free throw line.   Frustrated to watch a 7 foot center bring the ball down before he shoots over and over. Frustrated to watch a 6'10" guy pump fake from the 3pt line as if someone is going to block his shot. And above all, frustrated to watch this team play soft and disinterested. While I would never say I could do better than Matta, I see a number of things that he could change forthw better but doesn't. BUT, just so there is no confusion, I have NEVER wanted Matta fired.   I don't know him but he seems like a great guy. I painfully want him to succeed. 

ibuck's picture

I feel that pain & frustration too. Yes, I would like Matta to do some things differently too, especially since I don't have to live with the consequences of things I wish, as he clearly does with his actions. What Matta does not only affects the players he has now, but the ones he's trying to get to OSU. And none of us, media included, know all the things going on with that team—in practice, in the locker room, in coaches offices, etc. And based on Matta's teams' past performances (B1G Championships, Sweet 16's, Elite Eights, Final Fours, etc), I'm willing to give him a lot of leeway this year.  Especially when it's so obvious these Buckeyes are not doing even the basic things needed to win, like blocking out, grabbing rebounds, getting your feet ready to shoot before you get the pass, moving on offense, getting back on D—vs Indiana they allowed a fast break basket after a made OSU free throw! This seems like the athletes are not listening / accepting coaching. And the team's leaders are not setting an example for others to follow. For instance, is Q still shoving opponents & getting technical fouls ? Are the starters shooting free throws consistently and well?

Our honor defend, we will fight to the end !

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

TossTrap's picture

I agree with much of what you say. 

Who do we blame for a team that does not improve during the season? What skills do they practice? I think Matta's skill set is recruiting and teaching defense. But offensively it seems this staff is happy just giving players freedom to develop on their own game.

That said, I have seen some pretty good Izzo talent that laid an egg too.

First and goal at the five and Arch is getting the ball.

OSUFlash's picture

At this point I'd be happy with a win against MSU to give Aaron and Lenzelle a win at home for the last time and getting bounced early in the tourneys is fine by me. Seriously people its time to stop throwing these guys under the bus after every loss. It's not just Aaron or Lenzelle or the lack of a bench, a big man, shooters, leaders, rebounders etc.....it's all those things.

Unfortunately they are playing about as well as they're capable which is average or slightly better. Same as the secondary and LBers on the football team. But fear not Matta will right this ship and next years recruits is a step in the right direction.

osuflash

+1 HS
Mr. Slick's picture

Disagree - They have certainly played better than they did in their two games this week.

+1 HS
D-Day0043's picture

Turrible......

I am D-Day0043 and I approve this message.

TLB's picture

Not sure who was worse today, this team or the weather forecasters.

+4 HS
AndyVance's picture

No kidding. We went from "THE WHITE DEATH IS COMING!!!!" to "Oh look honey, the snow is already melted off the sidewalk" in about six hours.

+4 HS
RuGettinIt's picture

This year has been the worst coaching job that I have seen from Matta.   No personnel or strategy changes game in and game out and he expects different results.  Need a 3 call ADV.  There is talent on this team and they shouldn't be losing to the likes of PSU, Nebraska, and a down IU team.  NCAA pfft, this team couldn't even win the NIT with the way they play.

+2 HS
Bolt's picture

There's athleticism, I'll give you that. Not a lot of offensive talent though. They had open looks and missed them today (and throughout the season). They had shots at the basket and couldn't finish. I'll be happy to put part of the blame on Thad for sure...but at some point some of it needs to fall on the players as well, the ones that actually go out and execute (or don't execute). As with most things in life, it's not so much black and white or his or her fault...but some sort of combination in between.

Basically, there's a lot of ingredients that are going into making this turd what it is today.

AndyVance's picture

...and the Lost Season continues. Sigh.

+1 HS
TLB's picture

Should be in. Lots of mediocre teams this year

+1 HS
Sportpaco's picture

We've gone from aspirations of a Final Four appearance to hopes of a First Four invitation. 

+2 HS
vball10set's picture

8/30/14 can't get here soon enough...GO BUCKS!!!

+1 HS
BeijingBucks's picture

Every loss folks lose their minds...

chill honeybunny!

 

 

None can love freedom heartily, but good men; the rest love not freedom, but license. ~ John Milton

wyatt's picture

Those 15 cup cake teams we beat early in the season proved worthless.  When will moron AD Gene Smith wake up? When you get beat by Yogi, it's a bad day.  My daughter could make more than 1 of 7 free throws......blindfolded.

+1 HS
oshow68's picture

Practice should be just shooting the basketball.

Marc Odoms

+3 HS
ShowThemOhiosHere's picture

After February and the 6-1 run, I thought this team could extend the Sweet 16 streak, with a small chance of extending the Elite 8 streak. This team will be in he tourney, but honestly, not sure they'll win a game in it.

Class of 2010.

Tkebuck1's picture

8-9 seed. Bounced in first round. ...Regroup. Recruit. Come back next year and kick some serious Big ass.

DLJad's picture

I am disappointed, but not surprised.

Although he kept the Bucks in the game, I wish Thad had kept Q on the bench for the remainder of the game.

Only Q and Loving have sound shooting mechanics.  (Loving is not quite ready for prime time.)

+1 HS
tressel12's picture

Q really needs to get his &@$* together. These ill-advised pushes creating technical fouls which turn into 3 to 4 to possibly 5 point plays, momentum for the home team, and fuel for the home crowd NEED to stop. Matta needs to somehow make it clear to him that this behavior won't be tolerated.......

Because I couldn't go for three. -- Woody Hayes

+1 HS
thatlillefty's picture

For all those screaming the sky is falling, so ready to criticize our players and coach - please jump off the bandwagon now. Because we don't need you.

We still have a regular season finale against Mich State next week. And I for one will be devestated to see Craft and Lenzelle play their last game at the Schott.

Let's keep this all in perspective. Sure, losing sucks. But this team was never expected to compete for a national title. And they have been a lot of fun to watch this season.

Go Bucks! I'll never stop believing in this team.

-1 HS
NoVA Buckeye's picture

I have a crazy theory, and I know it'll be unpopular among many of you. Bear with me.

I have a strange feeling that a lot of our inconsistencies lie within the coaching staff, now bear with me, just keep reading.

We have Aaron Craft, who can't shoot a jumper to save his life, but plays terrific defense for the most part. So terrific, you might add, that he may be the greatest defender Ohio State has ever had. Now, going back to that jumper, he hasn't been hot once this year once conference play began. That's not good. Which has led me to believe that there is a lack of accountability on Craft. He isn't being told to stop shooting so he keeps putting those jumpers up. Even if they may be falling in practice, a coach has to recognize that practice points don't count in games. That could be the problem. Or maybe...

Maybe woes of the seniors are being pushed onto the other players. Maybe Amir is being blamed for not getting enough offensive boards or Shannon Scott is being blamed for not moving around enough to give Craft a good lane.

Maybe we're putting Shannon Scott in an awful position by making him a 2 guard when he is clearly meant to run the offense instead of being a scorer.

Maybe we aren't moving Lenzelle enough and aren't recognizing that he isn't a spot up shooter like we expect him to be.

Maybe Sam Thompson is getting a free pass for not taking shots even though he has the skills to make them.

Maybe LaQuinton Ross is given a free pass to not play defense since they don't want to lose him

Maybe this team is a mess and the season just needs to end right now.

I love the seniors and all they did. Really, I do. However, this team needs change because what's going on isn't working. I don't want to get rid of Thad because we aren't getting Coach K or Jim Boeheim walking through those doors anytime soon. He's seriously the best we'll get for a long time. There's an old saying that winning is the best mascara (or something along those lines) in that it covers up any problems you may have. We never really saw the problems until Michigan State and Iowa in the beginning of 2014. At this point, new leadership in the players is something we need. I'm not looking forward to losing in the 1st round of the B1G tournament or the 1st round of the NCAA tournament, but both are extremely likely to happen, and that's unfortunate. I don't want it to happen, as crazy as that sounds, and you shouldn't, either. I will cheer for this team until everything is said and done and then I'll move on to next season, just like the players should and will.

Whether we win or lose, I will remain a Buckeye with joy which death can still.

The offseason begins when your season ends. Even then there are no days off.

+5 HS
Diseased Leg's picture

Is it just me, or are our players not developing? We have these kids for 3-4 years and they fail to get any better in any aspect of the game.

+3 HS
Shangheyed's picture

Being from Cleveland this season is easier to take... I imagine for others there is total dispare.  BUT rest assured, as we say up North... there is always next year!

+1 HS
FROMTHE18's picture

Welp, team is what they are at this point. Its March, can't exactly figure out how to shoot, rebound, or have your big men realise who to play inside now. Just ride this wave until it ends and start focusing on football. 

jamesrbrown322's picture

Sadly, for this first time since I can remember, I am almost looking forward to the season being over. I am holding out hope that they can shock us all and get to the Sweet 16. However, a loss to MSU and an early exit from the B1G Tourney remain distinct, and unfortunately a fall to anywhere from a 7-11 seed seems likely. This has been such a disappointment.

 

"Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts." - Winston Churchill

gm3jones's picture

If they lose the next two (Home vs Sparty and first round of tourney), I don't see how they can even be an 11 seed. I was thinking 12 or 13.

There is nothing more remarkable as learning to think better.

shizawn9415's picture

This team just isn't very good, plain and simple. But look at the bright side, they could lose the next two and still make the tourney!! Maybe Ross catches fire and they make the sweet sixteen for crafts last year. If not, oh well, next year is going to be better

RedQueenRace's picture

But it had three prolonged field goal droughts totaling more than 12 minutes.

That seems so unlike them.  Don't they usually do it in one fell swoop?

+1 HS
Zimmy07's picture

Can they start televising Buckeye Hockey in place of Buckeye Basketball until most of the players on the basketball team actually seem to care about winning the dag gum games?

buckeyeEddie27's picture

My thoughts of this team in January were that they were playing with 1 legit starter (Craft) and at any given time 4 "sixth men" type guys.  Guys just haven't developed as hoped and the difference makers are gone.

Now it's March and it sucks to say I feel no different.

Thad got his 20, Craft set some records and Sam made some Highlight dunks and blocks but I think this season goes quiet into that good night very soon.

I hope I'm wrong.

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

3cent's picture

Craft isn't a legit starter either

-3 HS
buckeyeEddie27's picture

Please explain.

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

Heisman Dog's picture

I'm going to throw this out here: if they make, say, 2 treys and a few FT, they would have been in the game at the end while still having deplorable stats.  They're a poor shooting team, but that can turn around if a few guys get on a roll.  Anything can happen in the tourney.

With that in mind, I'm more concerned about Matta's "stubbornness" sometimes with regard to who should be on the floor.  e.g. I felt like LSJ should have played all 40 at IU if possible, or Ross should have been left in with 3 fouls, since he was hot at the time. Or during the final 5' of the PSU game Craft should have stayed on the bench, as Scott was doing well at PG.  This team so rarely clicks - I feel like Matta just needs to keep playing whoever is hot, regardless of fouls, fatigue or some predetermined value.

Zimmy07's picture

I remember thinking "there goes the only guy on the floor who is capable of scoring right now" when Ross went to the bench as well.

I think if we had a 3rd big man things might be very different.  I think IU went on a 21-5 run to end the half with both Amir & Trey on the bench.

OldColumbusTown's picture

I'm as frustrated as anybody with this team.  It is hard to even watch them because you just don't know what you are going to see from game to game.  However, I do take issue with the fact that a guy like Aaron Craft is being called awful/non-starter quality/taken to task for not being a leader by a few individuals.

Craft is what he is.  He's a defense-first, hard-nosed player who is great at running a team and, yes, leading a team.  He is not a scorer.  He is not a shooter.  He is not in the lineup to do those things.  Just because he is not a scorer does not mean he's bad, or isn't a leader, or should not start.  Moreover, the fact that other guys on the team who are being relied on to score cannot do so on a consistent basis, Craft tends to force things and become a catalyst on the offensive side when that is not his forte.  When other guys are shrinking in pressure situations, Craft begins to realize somebody has to act... hence some of his poor decision-making and attacks to the basket when he forces things that just aren't there.  Should he do it?  No.  Does it hurt the team at that point?  Yes.  But, at least he's trying.  THAT, my friends, is the epitome of being a leader.

3cent's picture

Yep, nothing is ever Craft's fault. It is everyone's but his.

-1 HS
3cent's picture

I for one never liked Craft, and what made it worse is how all you guys fawn over him. I saw this year coming during his Freshman year, meaning that once all the good players left (Lighty, Diebler, Buford, Sullinger, Thomas) his game would be exposed.

-2 HS
Nutinpa's picture

His game....like any point guard is to stir the drink and run the offense. Dish to people who can score. And on this team, that would be........

The only thing "exposed" when Lighty, Diebler, Buford and Sully (and DT) left was obvious:  the lack of anyone who could score. Might explain Craft's ill-advised, almost carnival act drives to the basket late in the game.  I will admit a point guard needs to be more productive than he is on offense....but his offensive limitations did not hurt this team the past 3 seasons. Now? They are exaggerated because there is simply nobody else who can score on this team with the game on the line or even consistently during the game.

You could put Trey Burke on this team.....and he'd look bad.

People "fawning" over Craft?  Yeah, you can count me among those and for good reason.  

Zimmy07's picture

If we had ANYONE who could consistently knock down a 3 I don't think you'd be saying that about Craft.  He is amazing driving and shooting at the rim.  Half of the time I don't know how he gets the ball up without it getting blocked & then I'm even more amazed that it actually goes in after hitting the glass.  He must have the equivalent of several months time practicing getting the ball in off the glass at different angles while driving hard.  I know he can't hit the 3 most of the time, but there are so many other things he does really well.

3cent's picture

If we had ANYONE who could consistently knock down a 3 I don't think you'd be saying that about Craft. 

Yes  I would because I did when we had those players.

BuckWylde's picture

I've been a die-hard fan of this program since their last (and only) national championship; and have watched every team & coach since Fred Taylor, and in my opinion the title of this article should be  " . . . can't overcome piss-poor coaching."  Take away the "baker's-dozen" pastries that pad our schedule every year and you have a near .500 record, for a team with a "great" coach & numerous 4-star talents that seem to regress over their college years; a coach that never ever takes responsibility for losses, but regularly throws ill-prepared kids under the proverbial bus in interviews following losses like the last 2 games. 

If I were to steal 3+ million dollars of taxpayer money from the state of Ohio, I'd likely spend the rest of my life behind bars, but Matta does it year after year and is hailed as a b-ball guru by Buckeye fans (many of whom are too young to have ever SEEN good coaching). 

In closing, as I relinquish the floor to the hoards of Thad defenders who are dying to uphold his honor, I am of the belief that he is NOT an NCAA championship caliber coach, and the only thing that'll change my mind is a second national championship banner that he is responsible for winning.

 What kind of foolishness is it to pay so much money to a coach that only produces also-rans?

BuckWylde, it's more than a name . . . it's the mindset that describes Buckeye Nation!

Nutinpa's picture

Geez, I think you are being a little harsh, Buck!  Now to be clear, I am not a blinded Thad - supporting homer like so many are in this Forum.  Probably because I did not attend OSU and maybe that gives me a fraction of objectivity. His negatives are now becoming pretty clear: Inability to close the deal in the NCAA Tourney. One of the two Sully teams could have or should have won the NC.  His "bigs" on this and last year's teams really cannot play at this level.  I give credit to Amir for improving his game this year....he truly has and to ignore that is not fair to him or to Matta.  Trey, on the other hand, plays with a big heart and so little game.  That hurts.  In the modern game you have to have some semblance of a low post and at least a sniper or two from the arc.  This team has neither despite being together for 3 years. Speaking of Trey's, Matta also inexplicably missed on Trey Burke....Sully's h.s. teammate for pete's sake. The only saving grace of this oversight is that so few other teams recruited Burke.  So....I guess that Coach Bielein at Michigan knows things other coaches don't?  I'd say so since his team has been at the of the B1G now for 2 seasons in a row...this year after losing McGeary with everyone writing them off.  

On the plus side of Matta's legacy, the support for him is pretty obvious. OSU is and always will be a football school first.  But I can think of no other "football school" in the past decade with as strong of a basketball program as Ohio State under Matta's direction.  He'll never get the kids that Calipari, Coach K, Boeheim and others get. That's just the way it is.  But he has put OSU basketball back on the map and kept them in the conversation in most of his tenure. Will his legacy be as good as Izzo's?  Only time will tell.  But I think the total picture on Matta is more evenly mixed than you and some others are giving credit. 

+1 HS
BuckWylde's picture

Nut, you make some very good points, and I appreciate good insight which you clearly display. I especially like your referencing the "modern" game, of which coach Matta is a sterling example. "Old school" collegiate coaching was far more centered around strong fundamental growth and development of players by coaches who assumed an almost parental posture in the lives of their players. The products of these relational learning environs were team first mindsets that resulted in the iconic KY, UCLA, Indiana, UNC, Louisville championship squads of that era.

Today's coaches rely on getting more McDonalds All Americans than their opponants as a success formula, rather than the lost art of coaching kids up. As you said, Matta likely will "never get the kids that Calipari, Coach K, Boeheim and others get;" but by the same token he'll probably never grow the type of teams, comprised of lesser talents, that Greg Marshall and other "throwback" coaches will, because he won't do the work that they do.

There is NO excuse for Amir & McDonald being as anemic and  unskilled after several years on a big-school team, except . . . coaching; or for Scott, Craft,Thompson and the bigs to be utterly inconsistent at the foul line, except . . . coaching. There's no reason for the Sully squad you referenced to be destroyed by KY's Harrelson, while Lauderdale sees his career end with fouls to give, in a 2pt. loss . . .  except, coaching . . . and the list goes on and on, for like 10 years.

Moses took his squad to the brink of the promised land . . . but it was Joshua that finally won the big game . . . just sayin'  

BuckWylde, it's more than a name . . . it's the mindset that describes Buckeye Nation!

3cent's picture

But I can think of no other "football school" in the past decade with as strong of a basketball program as Ohio State under Matta's direction. 

Florida

Zimmy07's picture

OSU's record only including Big 10 regular season games & regular season games vs teams ranked > 200 that year.

04-05 (Houston, Creighton, Chattanooga, Clemson, Texas Tech, St. Joseph's, LSU) = 8-8 Big 10 + 4-3 = 12-11.  19-11 overall reg season record, 20-12 final record

05-06 (Butler, St Joseph's, Belmont, Iowa St, LSU) 12-4 Big 10 + 6-0 = 18-4.  23-4 overall reg season record, 26-6 final record.

06-07 (Loyola, Kent St, EKU, SF, YSU, UNC, Valpo, Cincy, Iowa St, Florida, Tennessee) = 15-1 Big 10 + 9-2 = 24-3.  27-3 overall reg season record, 35-4 final record.

07-08 (Green Bay, Syracuse, Texas A&M, UNC, Butler, Cleve St, UF, Tenn) = 10-8 Big 10 + 5-3 = 15-11.  19-12 overall reg season record, 24-13 final record (NIT Champion).

08-09 (BGSU, Miami (FL), ND, Butler, Jacksonville, Iona, WVU) = 10-8 Big 10 + 6-1 = 16-9.  20-9 overall reg season record, 22-11 final record.

09-10 (UNC, Cal, Lipscomb, FSU, EMU, Butler, Cleve St, WVU) = 14-4 Big 10 + 5-3 = 19-7.  24-7 overall reg season record.  29-8 final record.

10-11 (UF, Morehead St, Miami (OH), FSU, IUPUI, SCar, Oakland) = 16-2 Big 10 + 7-0 = 23-2.  29-2 overall reg season record.  34-3 final record.

11-12 (UF, Valpo, Duke, Kansas, SCar Upstate, SCar, Lamar, Miami (OH)) = 13-5 Big 10 + 7-1 = 20-6.  25-6 overall reg season record.  31-8 final record.

12-13 (Albany, Rhode Island, Washington, Duke, Long Beach St, Kansas) = 13-5 Big 10 + 4-2 = 17-7.  23-7 overall reg season record.  29-8 final record.

13-14 (Ohio, Marquette, American, Wyoming, Maryland, ND ST, Delaware, Notre Dame) = 9-8 Big 10 + 8-0 = 17-8.  22-8* overall reg season record.  ? final record.

I struggle with this sites formatting, I guess.  The bolded text didn't show.  The regular season records vs the Big 10 & top 200 teams only by year=

04/05: 12-11, 05/06: 18-4, 06/07: 24-3, 07/08: 15-11, 08/09: 16-9, 09/10: 19-7, 10/11: 23-2, 11/12: 20-6, 12/13: 17-1, 13/14: 17-8 =

Far better than .500.

 

Zimmy07's picture

# of 20 win seasons prior to Matta: 18.  # of 20 win season with Matta: 10.

+1 HS
Go1Bucks's picture

The poor shooting has definitely been an issue. We have the players that have shown flashes of talent, but I unfortunately believe a lack of drive and practice perfectionism is a plague among players that believe they are already good enough, don't put forward the extra effort and embrace the TEAM philosophy.

But more troublesome in my eyes, is the lack of loyalty of a recruit coming to University and playing out, especially at a time when the team he is a part of relies on him.  We need to recruit players that want to play AND stay.  I hear all the time that a player should go when the getting is good, and I call bullshit on that, because if the player is good, he will still be good or great when his time comes, but agents talk up the bs and convince players to leave teams hanging when they are most needed. And that has sorely been the case at OSU and I feel more for the team, Coach Matta, the fans and the school for what could have been along with lost possible NCs.  Would love to see the college culture go back to roots, but I won't hold my breath as long as greed exists. So I guess, I'll wish for the best that they can produce, and hope for progress, this year and in the future.

Go Bucks!

Nutinpa's picture

I agree with your premise,go1, but I would stop cold at suggesting OSU under Matta resembles what Calipari has done at Kentucky, where he makes the concept of a Student-athlete, a mockery.  UK is the land of "1 and dones", not OSU even if you do acknowledge the "Thad 5" departures, Koufos, and Mullens and others.

OSU under Matta, had the luxury of keeping Diebler, Lighty, Buford, Craft, Scott, Sammy Thompson, DeShaun Thomas, LSJ and a host of others for 3 or 4 years.  Hell, even Sully came back for his Sophomore year against the advice of many.

OSU's basketball program, Thad Matta, and its record of success can be debated from all points of view, over or under-achievements among them. But to suggest that this program's success or lack thereof can be attributed primarily to players leaving too soon, in my opinion is not accurate and puts the blame in the wrong place --- or finding an excuse that does not fit.

+1 HS
Go1Bucks's picture

The comments were 2 separate ones.  The offensive problems, I cannot explain, but I gave a couple of reasons I think they exist as well as others I don't have. And I wasn't blaming Matta for the way it is or our program (although I wish that he had a better read on players when coming in, not that he can be a crystal ball.)  I am blaming the system that the media, agents and the NCAA accept as if it should be a given.  They give out the scholarships but I believe that they should be treated as the contracts that they are, (especially if the players keep clamoring for pay), we give you an education, exposure, training, and the possibility of a career - you give us 4 years, a sincere effort at a degree, and a team player.  I know, big subject to study.  I am just frustrated.  But believe me, I am happy with Matta's efforts and production at OSU.

Go Bucks!

-1 HS
3cent's picture

OSU under Matta, had the luxury of keeping Diebler, Lighty, Buford, Craft, Scott, Sammy Thompson, DeShaun Thomas, LSJ and a host of others for 3 or 4 years.  Hell, even Sully came back for his Sophomore year against the advice of many.

Turner stuck around an extra year, too.

-1 HS