The Buckeye reached 9-3 in their last outing in complete dominance of The Youngstown State Penguins, 77-40. From the opening tip-off, the Penguins were simply outmatched.

The Ohio State University would have four players reach double figures in scoring: Three players would hit for 15 points – Jae’Sean Tate in 22 minutes, Keita Bates-Diop in 17 minutes, and Kam Williams in 31 minutes. Trevor Thompson would nail 11 points while having a commanding presence on the boards with 15.

Youngstown State appeared to wave the white flag early on….

Now up for the Buckeyes is the University of North Carolina – Asheville. The Bulldogs are 8-4 and lead the Big South Conference. Their four losses have come via some “good” teams. On Nov., 11th they fell to VCU 80-65; Nov., 14th the Bulldogs of Georgia handed them a 60-46 loss; on Nov., 25th it would be Kansas winning in a blow-out 95-57; and on Dec., 19th in a thriller against UNC-Greensboro, the Bulldogs fell 75-73. In their eight wins (a win is a win is a win …. right?) there simply has not been a clash with notable programs. They have logged wins against University of South Carolina Upstate, Siena, Brevard College, Coastal Carolina, Elon, and Warren Wilson.

UNC-Asheville is led in scoring by Ahmad Thomas, a 6-3 Guard who is averaging a “respectable” 16.8 points per game along with leading the team in rebounds with a 5.9 per game average. In assists, JR 6-3 Guard, Raekwon Miller has a 2.5 average per game. MaCio Teague, another 6-3 Guard, leads the team in steals. He has had 21 in the course of 12 games.

The Bulldogs are not a big team. Their tallest player, 6-7 FR Forward, Jonathan Baehre, out of Germany, has only appeared in 5 games thus far. Though they do have representation in the hustle department – 6-6 Forward, SR, Will Weeks averages 6.8 points per game along with 4 rebounds. He is up and down the court in a flash, positioned and ready. I like his style. He simply does not stop.

The Buckeyes now have six players averaging per game in double figures: Jae’Sean Tate (the leader) has a 14.1 points per game average, Marc Loving comes in with 11.8, Kam Williams with 11.0, Trevor Thompson has 10.4, JaQuan Lyle has 10.02, and Kieta Bates-Diop, who is returning from a season’s delay injury moved into the group with a 10.6 average per game after scoring 15 in the last outing against the Penguins of Youngstown State.

Trevor Thompson continues to lead the Buckeyes in rebounding with a 9.1 per snag per game. Kam Williams continues to lead our Scarlet and Gray in steals with an average of 1.3 per game.

The Buckeyes lead the Bulldogs in their all-time meet-ups, 5-0. Their last meeting was back in December of 2012 when the Buckeyes handed them a 90-72 loss. In a head to head against all opponents of the Bulldogs Conference (Big South) the Buckeyes are collectively 14-0.

Ohio State is a +14 favorite in this one. On a note of caution, we could say that seems to be quite a big give away. But comparable to YSU’s victory for the Buckeyes – the jelling “very-well” could be forming. And, in an honest review, the Buckeyes are a much bigger and faster team than the Bulldogs of UNC-Asheville.

This will hardly be a thriller. But for Buckeye fans it might be fun in the sense of seeing CJ Jackson getting more time on the floor. We will, undoubtedly, also see Joey Lane, Jimmy Jent, Andre Wesson, and Derek Funderburk in the night’s action.

The Buckeyes will climb to 10-3 against UNC-Asheville and will do so in a commanding way. I see them covering the +14 and then some. Look for another wipe-out. The Buckeyes will win this in the neighborhood of 81-55.