(Image courtesy ohiostatebuckeyes.com, game information courtesy ohiostatebuckeyes.com, ESPN.com, stats courtesy of teamrankings.com)

The #16 (for now) ranked Buckeyes (12-4, 2-3) visited  Iowa (12-4, 3-3) on Saturday. It didn’t go well, at all. Iowa outplayed Ohio State to the measure of 72-62 to hand Ohio State its third consecutive loss.discrepancy to overcome Ohio State 86-77.  Ohio State held the lead at the half, 26-24, but the Hawkeyes used  hot shooting (55%) and ongoing ability of Ohio State to commit fouls and to turn the ball over tin the second half to outscore the Buckeyes 48-36 to secure their win. 

You may recall my wording in the above paragraph is almost identical to how I described the OSU-MSU game. It’s not that I’m lazy this morning while I write this; it’s because it’s the same damn trend of events.

This first half was painful to watch. The teams combined for 36% shooting and 20 turnovers. With a combined 55 FG attempts, turning the ball over 20 times is some pretty bad basketball.

If you an Ohio State fan, things didn’t improve in the 2nd half. They shot 37% on 32 FG attempts and turned the ball over 10 times. 

The Buckeyes had two players in double figures. They were Andre Wesson (13 points) and C.J. Jackson (10).  Kaleb Wesson had 6 rebounds. Andre led the Buckeyes with 4 assists. 

The Hawkeyes were led by Luka Garza (16), Tyler Cook (15), Ryan Kriener (11) and Joe Wieskamp (10). Cook had 8 rebounds. Jordan Bohannon had 8 assists. 

Ohio State shot 37% from the field (22-59), 40% (10-25) from 3-point range and 73% (8-11) from the foul line. 

Iowa shot 45% from the field (25-55), 25% (4-16) from 3-point range and 72% (16-20) from the foul line. 

What Went Right

Justin Ahrens had a good game in his 10 minutes of play. He was efficient shooting, a credible rebounder and had a pretty clean “box score” line. Jaedon LeDee actually wasn’t too bad either in his 19 minutes. He wasn’t afraid to shoot the ball and he rebounded reasonably well. 

Their offensive rebounding seems to be improving, which is a good thing since they are missing a lot of shots.

That’s really about it. 

What Didn’t

Pretty much everything else. Ohio State had the dubious accomplishment of having nearly matching numbers in field goals (22), turnovers (21) and fouls (23). 

Second half defense. After a very respectable 1st half (36%, 24 points) the Buckeyes were defenseless in 2nd half, giving up 48 points on 55% shooting. That’s astounding, in a bad way, to give up double the number of points half to half.

Other…

  • Maybe because Ohio State is getting into a tougher part of their schedule, but I think this team is getting worse. Kaleb insists upon committing fouls early in the game which compromises his ability to contribute anything meaningful. Senior leadership is questionable. C.J. is not providing much coming off he bench and replacement in the lineup, Keyshawn Woods is not justifying his spot in the lineup.
  •  Ohio State was again exposed for its lack of forecourt depth. The Brothers Wesson played 41 of a potential 80 minutes. Kyle Young 26 of 40. Jaedon LeDee was credited with 19 minutes and Justin Ahrens finally was able to break into a sweat with 10 minutes.
  • There is really an easy formula to beat Ohio State right now. First, play some zone defense. The Buckeyes don’t have the shooters to break the zone. Second, run your offense against Kaleb Wesson. He’s sure to foul you. As an alternative, have your post player body up against Kaleb when he’s on offense. He will push and throw elbows to get position and you can pick up a foul or two there, as well.
  • According to teamrankings.com the Buckeyes are projected to finish the regular season 20-11 and 10-10 in B1G play. They rank Ohio State as the 262nd best team in the country and #7 in the B1G. Their chance to make the NCAA’s is 57%. They are a projected 65% chance to beat Maryland. That may be too optimistic.

 

Up Next

The Buckeyes host University of Maryland Friday, January 18th. The game is set to tip-off at 6:30 ET. You can watch the game on FS1 or listen to it on 97.1 The Fan. Or both.

The Terrapins (13-3, 5-1)* are averaging 77 points per game while allowing 66 ppg.  They average 40 rebounds and 13 turnovers per game. For comparison, the Buckeyes are scoring 77 and allowing 64 points per game. Ohio State averages 36 rebounds and 12 turnovers per game.

‘*This will be updated after Wisconsin-Maryland game on January 14th.

Maryland has three players that average double figures scoring per game. They are 6’0″ G Anthony Cowan, Jr (17.2), 6’10” F Bruno Fernando (14.2) and 6’10” F Jalen Smith (13.0). Fernando also leads the team with 7.1 rebounds per game. Cowan leads the team with 4.4 assists per game.  Maryland is big and talented. Ohio State will have it’s hands full with these guys.