He was indeed injured this year for his brief stint of PT. I didn't mean to slight him. Only trying to call out that that his proven ability has seemingly grown leaps and bounds in the minds of some who use his injury to act as if it's the difference in Ohio State being respectable versus clown show. I'm a KBD fan just as I stated but don't think his injury is the type of crutch some think it is - that's just my take.
I feel you on the Schott in particular, ATL. I definitely don't mean it specifically when I say facilities are strong. It's an NBA style arena which isn't a great thing however I do think it's a bit of a chicken/egg scenario. If the team is worth a damn, the Schott can rock just like any other venue for a big game. I was on press row in the Schott for much of Thad's true heyday and that place would be packed and create a legit homecourt advantage. The Deal With It Game, the Duke game, some tangles with Sparty - that place was electric. When the product stinks and that product also happens to be playing a stinky opponent (much of the B1G and non-conf slate), it doesn't matter if you're playing in St. John's or MSG or the old Boston Garden, the atmosphere will suck.
You could very well be right that OSU will be worse in a post-Thad environment and there are cases of that happening to other schools, just as you point out. I'm personally willing to take that risk but it's fair to call it exactly that; a risk. Maybe because I've lived through the Eldon Miller, Randy Ayers and Jim O'Brien lows, it makes me more willing to roll the dice but that's where I'm at after years of backing Thad to the hilt.
Well said. I'd argue that if presenting facts/data ends up being perceived as piling on then that probably says more about the facts/data than it does the person/people presenting the facts/data.
I was a self-proclaimed Thad apologist all the way to the UCLA game this year but it dawned on me afterward that I'd had enough celebrating moral victories. I obviously didn't expect OSU to win that game - and therein lies the issue - Thad's team hasn't been consistently competitive in those types of games for a few years now because he's seemingly lost his touch on the recruiting trail. With Ohio State's facilities, the talent in Ohio etc, the Buckeyes should be a virtual lock to at least make the NCAA tourney every year and be in the top third (or even top fourth) of the league. Failing to do that in spectacular fashion is tough to swallow considering the head coach's salary, the facilities etc.
Trust me, I typed that tongue-in-cheek but didn't go so far as to use sarcasm font. I think I mentioned even that modest streak has only been accomplished three times since December.
Wasn't mentioned because he's not in the projected two-deep.
For the record, I'm 100% in agreement with you that 20 win seasons are fool's gold especially with the type of non-conf schedule Thad usually lines up. I imply as much in the article by citing the KP ranks of teams OSU beat. I also touched on the fact this will be another season with at least 10 losses which was a rare occurrence once upon a time. In other articles I've poked holes in the argument some make about Thad creating the higher expectations for the program and therefore getting a pass for down years, because he's paid at a level that dictates high expectations.
Not that you were necessarily addressing your comments to the article itself - I only want to be clear that I'm generally over Thad but am willing to give him one more year at max to turn things around. Truthfully, I'd be fine if he stepped down at season's end but if he doesn't, I can also see why Gene would be willing to give him another year. Just wanted to add my $.02 in comments because it doesn't make sense for me to call that out if I write a weekly article about OSU hoops.
Serious question, IronPastor, are you being sarastic?
I have to believe you are since it's a major stretch to suggest Loving played four good games in a row before his five point, 2 of 8 shooting game against Northwestern (in which his turnover leading to a breakaway layup late pretty much sealed the loss).
Loving was good against Nebraska (the game immediately preceding NW) with 15 pts and 11 reb with no turnovers. He also had the game-winner so definitely props to him.
Before that however, he did have 12 points against Sparty with seven boards but he also coughed it up five times and shot 2/6 from the field. I'd struggle to agree that was a "good game" from a senior expected to be the primary weapon heading into the season.
Before Sparty, he put up five points and two rebounds against five turnovers at Wisconsin. No way that classifies as "good".
Before Wisconsin, he missed eight of 11 shots for nine points with three turnovers against Minnesota.
Sorry for the late reply, Ohio Guy in Jersey. Here's a rambling stream of consciousness about it since I have to run but wanted to respond to your fair question..
With what Thad is paid combined with things like the talent available in Ohio alone, the conference he coaches in which helps recruiting because kids get to play against typically and consistently top-level competition, the city of Columbus as an attraction to an 18-yr old kid, the facilities / perks provided to the kids, the draw of Ohio State University in general, the fact that while football is and always will be King people will indeed come out and support a competitive program, I think it's realistic to expect Thad produce at least a Top 15-20 team that finishes in the top quarter of the B1G and is a lock to make the NCAA tournament every year with a legit shot (maybe say "favored shot") to make the 2nd weekend.
I get ebbs and flows will happen as a result of early departures etc. and I've stated I believe it's inarguable Thad is the best coach in the history of the program. He deserves(d) some time, I get it.
My biggest issue is that I see a roster of only role players over the last 3 or 4 years which is compounded by the reality they don't seem to improve much leading me to question if Thad has lost his magic recruiting touch. And I wonder if health is a factor. And if it is that's problem because his health won't get better. Thad has missed on a ton of Ohio/regional kids that could've been difference makers over that 3-4 year stretch. If he can't snag one or two of those guys every couple years, it will be hard to live up the previous standard he created - and which he is paid for. Especially if he not only misses on the big time guys but also swings and misses on guys like Nick Ward, or basically taking Loving over Nigel Hayes, or not keeping Adrien Payne in state etc.
I've been a big defender of Thad up until UCLA. Not that I expected OSU to even be competitive in that game (which is part of the problem) - it just finally hit me that I was done celebrating moral victories after roughly 3.5 years of doing so. Sometimes you just need change for the sake of change. I truly do hope Thad can turn this team around but if he can't, I'd also be fine with a total house cleaning with a fresh voice. Just how I feel.
That's where I stand, as well. These last two wins aren't impressive by any stretch - unless viewing only through the lens of lowered expectations for the program which I refuse to adopt. I think one could make a very good argument that these last two wins could ultimately set the program back further as pressure on Thad to get the program back to a higher standard (in line with his salary) is potentially compromised. I love Thad. Best hoops coach in school history but the argument that "he created these high expectations" and therefore should somehow get a pass is laughable because he's paid at a level in line with high expectations.
No, opinions are solely my own though they may happen to overlap with fellow staff. My thing is that while everyone, myself included, is piling on the staff structure and playcalling - which I believe to be totally fair - we can't lose sight of the fact a lot of players brought in with lots of hype haven't don't squat and the youth card isn't a legit excuse in many of those cases.
From a cursory glance at my notes, Prince had a False Start on the 3rd play of OSU's 3rd possession. The refs called said Price's number but replay showed Prince moved. On 5th play of 6th possession he and Price collapsed allowing a sack. On 2nd play of 7th possession pressure off his side led to rushed incompletion. I'm not bothering with looking at 2nd half notes or all rushing plays. This is just pass pro and penalties real quick.
Maybe I'm being hard on him but I'm not sure it's accurate to say he had "a good game" either.
Yep. Brainfart on my part.
I mixed in some fast-forward but yeah. Spoiler: it sucked the 2nd time around although I will say writing about losses is therapeutic. I'm all set to watch the hoops team possibly look like shit later today.
Certainly can't fault him for that!
Who is suggesting Prince at center?