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Path to the NCAA Tournament (Yes, It Still Exists...but Do You Believe?)

+12 HS
TheShookster's picture
January 30, 2023 at 4:34pm

I just kind of realized today with my latest comment on the Holtmann Monday Presser that "I'm not having fun watching the team and man it's even getting boring as hell to point out the many ways the Holtmann era has been a failure." We can talk ad nauseum about all of it. It feels like for the first time a lot of us are on the same page that the last 5-6 years haven't been good enough at all. I personally really don't give a shit who coaches Ohio State basketball, I just want them to win games. If that's Holtmann, and he proves everything I've said about him to be wrong, that's fine with me. 

That being said, I decided to try and steer myself in a different direction, and that's a realistic discussion about if making the NCAA tournament is still possible for this team and shockingly once you take biases out of it....I think so?

By some miracle, this team is still 29th in NET and 27th in KenPom. When you look at the remaining schedule...Quad 1 and 2 victory chances are plentiful and there's really not a "bad" loss left for us to grab. As of the time of this posting:

Road against Purdue-Iowa-Michigan State and Home against Illinois are our Q1 victory chances. Home against Northwestern-Maryland-Michigan State-Penn State-Wisconsin (barely) and Road against Michigan are our Q2 victory chances.

I still won't say that I like our chances of actually turning this around, I'm just saying for this discussion that it's POSSIBLE where we sit today that this team could still make the tournament. This team has the talent to go 8-2 (win all the home games, beat Iowa and Michigan on the road) but I don't think that is realistic. I'm interested to hear what you guys think, but I'll say we finish 5-5 for an overall record of 16-15 (8-12) and we head into the B1G tournament as the 10th seed needing to basically win 3-4 games in a row to survive and make the First Four. We will go 1-3 on the road, winning either the Michigan or Iowa game and then we go 4-2 at home. I think Illinois is a bad matchup for us regardless of where we play, and Holtmann has typically been awful against Penn State so that's why I'm saying 4-2 at home.


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