Greetings Hoops Fans! This is Dave Horning for HoopsOnLane.com Fan Podcast with a preview of the next Ohio State Buckeyes game … a home game coming up this Monday, January 22nd at 8:00pm Columbus time against Nebraska at the Schott. The game will be broadcast on Big Ten Network and on radio at The Fan 97.1 FM. This will be the Buckeyes only game against the Cornhuskers on the regular season schedule.
Ohio State is now 8 wins and no losses in the Big Ten – tied with Purdue for first place. Nebraska has a record of 5 wins against three losses in the Big Ten – tied with Michigan for 4th place. However, Nebraska’s last game was a home win over the Wolverines. They also have home wins over Wisconsin, Illinois and Minnesota (and that was back in December when Minnesota had their full team playing). This Nebraska team deserves respect, as they played Kansas at home and lost by just one point. They beat Boston College in the ACC-Big Ten Challenge, one of only three Big Ten teams to win this year.
In the Team Rankings website of all 351 Division 1 Men’s Basketball programs, Nebraska is ranked #62 – just behind Gonzaga who is now ranked #60. Ohio State has now moved up to #19 on this website.
Last Thursday, Nebraska beat Michigan at home by the score of 72 to 52 – it was a dominating win over the Wolverines, who shot terribly – Michigan making only 4 of 18 3-point shots for 22% and 21 of 56 overall for 38%. Michigan even out-rebounded Nebraska, and took 9 more shots, but Nebraska was 5 for 11 for 46% on 3-point shots and 26 for 47 for 55% overall. Nebraska won that game with its shooting. Nebraska worked the ball inside against Michigan, and Michigan was called for a lot of fouls, which resulted in 23 free throw attempts for Nebraska compared to just 10 for Michigan. If Kaleb Wesson has another solid game down low, I don’t think Nebraska can score so easily inside the arc. Keita Bates-Diop and Jae’Sean Tate are also playing strong defense, so look for Nebraska to take more three point shots against the Buckeyes. They took 22 3-point shots against Kansas. I just don’t see them getting a lot of easy baskets down low against the Buckeyes.
The starting lineup for the Cornhuskers is expected to be:
Number 14 – 6-9 Junior Forward Isaac Copeland
Number 15 – 6-8 Sophomore Forward Isaiah Roby
Number 13 – 6-8 Senior Guard Anton Gill – their 3-point threat who has made 47% of his attempts – that’s Number 13 – Anton Gill
Number 24 – 6-5 Junior Guard James Palmer, Jr. – their leading scorer averaging 16 points per game – that’s Number 24 – James Palmer
Number 5 – 6-foot Junior Guard Glynn Watson Jr
Also, look for Number 11 – 6-4 Senior Guard Evan Taylor – to get significant playing time – he is making 46% of his 3-point attempts.
Nebraska is coached by Tim Miles, in his 6th season as Head Coach of the Cornhuskers. In his second season, which was 2014, he led Nebraska to its first NCAA appearance in 16 years, which resulted in him being named the Jim Phelan National Coach of the Year, an award given by collegeinsider.com. He was also selected the Big Ten Coach of the Year that year by his peers. He is a good coach and Nebraska is on the bubble for a possible NCAA appearance this year also. A win at Ohio State would give them the quality win they need to assure the invitation – it is Ohio State’s mission to win and further burnish our own credentials.
Ohio State’s Starting Lineup will be:
Number 34 – 6-9 Freshman Center Kaleb Wesson
Number 33 – 6-7 Junior Power Forward Keita Bates-Diop
Number 15 – 6-2 Senior Shooting Guard Kam Williams
Number 3 – 6-1 Junior Shooting Guard or Point Guard CJ Jackson, and
Number 1 – 6-4 Senior Jae’Sean Tate, Point Guard or Small Forward
Ohio State is coached by Chris Holtmann, in his first year. Will Chris Holtmann be in line to win the Jim Phelan National Coach of the Year award this season? I don’t know and I don’t care. Let’s just win, baby, and the awards will take care of themselves.
Look for the friendly confines of the Schottenstein Center to bolster the confidence of Keita Bates-Diop when he takes his next three-point shot. Expect the crowd to go crazy when it goes in. Be there on Monday at the Schott to join the celebration. Tip-off is 8:00pm.
This is Dave Horning for HoopsOnLane.com Fan Podcast. See you Monday at the Schott! Be there!