[Indiana 67, Ohio State 74] (Final)
Sorry for the delay, but with the late game we have to hustle like Suhr when the buzzer sounds. While Chris and Doug finish their stories, here is an insight via the intern:
Not a bad game in hindsight. The Hoosiers really competed, although Kelvin Sampson didn’t look particularly happy after the game. The reason the Hoosiers were able to stay competitive was due to their three-point shooting and ability to convert from the line.
But the Hoosiers didn’t have as nearly as many attempts from the charity stripe as the Buckeyes did (11 to 35). On the plus side, IU did make all of it’s free throws going 11-11. On the downside, they looked like an inexperienced team down the stretch. It’s an advantage not to have a go-to-guy sometimes, because the defense doesn’t know who to pressure. But it hurts in the closing seconds when people on the court are afraid to pull the trigger. Armon Bassett and D.J. White both had costly turnovers at the end of the game. With everything even, I still think that 9/10 times Ohio State would have won this game.
Some highlights from the post game press conference
“I don’t have the privy of replay. But from where I was looking, it looked like goal tending.” – Kelvin Sampson on Oden’s block on Bassett in the closing seconds.
“I was a little nervous, but it was a big physical game. Coach told us all year, that when you get into Big 10 play, its going to be physical.” – Greg Oden
“Those two freshman, Cook and Conley, they aren’t freshman. They are McDonalds All-Americans playing at a high level…they are arguably the best at their position in the country. Don’t look at them as normal freshman. Our kids are more like freshman. Joey Shaw and Armon Bassett are freshman.” – Kelvin Sampson
“Oden is one of those kids…had he scored 11 points, he still has a chance to be the best player on the floor every night. 21 points is a bonus when he scores, because when I see Oden I don’t see a great scorer, I see a great player. He’s a rebounder, he blocks shots, he does so many things. He’s more like Bill Russell than he is Shaq or Wilt Chamberlain. He is a tough kid and does all the little things and is really smart.” — Kelvin Sampson
“He works shooting with his left hand. He gets over 100 shots a day…and the good thing is, he’s starting to use his right hand as well. I don’t know when the switch is going to come, I hope its soon…” – OSU coach Thad Matta
[Indiana 67, Ohio State 72] (1:00)
David won’t die. Rod Wilmont just drained a three to pull the Hoosiers within five. I wasn’t sure who No. 10 was on the Hoosiers was, since it’d been so long since the announcer had said his name after a basket.
If Rod is good for one thing, it is streaky shooting. He just made a prayer. If I were Kelvin Sampson, I’d get him the ball.
[Indiana 62, Ohio State 67] (2:45)
Not a good time for the Hoosier offense to stall. Ohio State has kept Indiana from launching threes and has been able to execute on the offensive end. Greg Oden just returned to the game and if the Hoosiers expect to win, they’ll need to hit their shots and not give in to Ohio State’s pressure defense.
[Indiana 60 , Ohio State 63] (4:40)
As Kelvin Sampson would say, I’m not sure if Lance Stemler knows he’s on foot or horseback right now. Stemler is in the game playing with four fouls, but also is forgetting to play defense.
D.J. White just hushed the Value City Crowd with a three-point play. But Mike Conley Jr. returned the favor with a lay-up at the other end. This is going to be an exciting finish.
[Indiana 49, Ohio State 54] (7:51)
Here comes Ohio State. Buckeyes guard Ron Lewis just drained a three from the corner to put Ohio State up five. Indiana has attacked the rim with its last few possesions rather than settle for three pointers. Although that strategy usually work, it might not be such a good idea when you’re 9-17 from three-point range. If the Hoosiers have a chance of winning this game, they’re going to need to regain their outside touch and ride it all the way.
[Indiana 47, Ohio State 49] (9:54)
Even on a night when everyone on Indiana is shooting well, Ben Allen’s shot continues to be lucky to graze the rim.
From the sound of the crowd, the Buckeyes appear to be mounting a run. They’ve regained the lead and continue to keep the Hoosiers in foul trouble. The Hoosiers have 17 fouls to the Buckeyes 11. Stemler will be forced to sit-out down the stretch after picking up his fourth foul minutes ago.
[Indiana 44, Ohio State 42] (14:00)
I think even the most loyal Hoosier fans were expecting a blow out tonight — but give the Hoosiers credit.
They are playing a lot like the Hoosier team that made it to the championship game in 2002. They are very dependent on the three-point shot…but they are knocking them down. The Hoosiers are 8-15 from downtown.
[Indiana 37, Ohio State 39] (15:48)
You know what the worst part about going to games rather than watching them on television? The fact that I have to miss Erin Andrew’s updates on ESPN.
Greg Oden was pulled by Thad Matta a couple of seconds ago and he remains on the bench.. It’ll be interesting to see if the Hoosiers try to to establish anything inside while Oden rides the pine.
[Indiana 35, Ohio State 37] (16:32)
D.J. White just pulled down an offensive rebound and was fouled on the put-back. Ohio State coach Thad Matta just slammed his hand against the scorers table in frustration. The Hoosiers continue to stay close thanks to three-point shooting and second effort points.
[Indiana 29, Ohio State 35] (Halftime)
Due to Indiana’s effectiveness from three-point range and the relatively tame Ohio State offense, the Big 10 opener for both teams remains a close game at the half. I’d say the highlight for Indiana this half has to be the exceptional play of Joey Shaw. He missed his last two shots but he really gave Indiana a boost when it looked like this game might be a blow out.
Some Buckeye fan just cackled at Sampson, “Hey Coach! Welcome to the Big 10″ followed by easily the most evil laugh I have heard since listening to Dr. Evil in the last Austin Powers movie.
More to come…stay tuned.
[Indiana 23, Ohio State 28] (3:17)
The Hoosiers are staying in the game thanks to sharp three-point shooting so far. They’ve gone 5-9 from beyond the arc.
The game has a real NCAA tournament feel…but it has the feel of like a No. 1 seed versus a No. 8 seed. Oden has been relatively quiet so far, but the Buckeyes remain in control for the most part. I think one thing people tend to overlook is the fact that the Buckeyes aren’t in anyway dependent on Oden. He could be missing from that roster and they still might be ranked sixth in the country.
[Indiana 18, Ohio State 17] (7:34)
This is Matt taking the blog over for Chris. Hopefully I can make a smooth transition…
Oden just had his first dunk of the evening…but the real story so far in the first half is the play of Joey Shaw. Shaw has eight points and is 3-3 from the field including 2-2 from three point range.
Also, if the referees don’t start watching the IU player’s feet, the guy behind me is going to be pissed.
[Indiana 13, Ohio State 15] (9:37)
Stemler just picked up his third foul. See ya in the second half, Lance.
[Indiana 7, Ohio State 12] (11:31)
Ohio State just showed their “Kiss Cam” which is usually a sign for me to make a run to the bathroom…but in tonight’s instance it featured Mike Conley Sr. passionately kissing his wife. How passionate you might ask? He climbed out of his seat and essentially mounted the Ohio State point guard’s mother.
For those who don’t know, Mike Conley still holds the American record for the triple-jump…judging by the way he lept out of his seat, I’m guessing he’s still got it.
[Indiana 2, Ohio State 4] (15:49)
I’ve never heard a crowd cheer so loud about a two-point lead.
Pretty physical game so far, in the sense that the officials aren’t calling a lot of fouls on either team. Paticularly in the Oden/White match-up. The Buckeyes look like they haven’t exactly turned it on yet…”yet” probably being the key word.
Sampson just took the court for the first time tonight. He’s got a bit of a…wait for it….swagger to him tonight. It’s his first game in a new conference.
Starting lineup: Lance Stemler, Armon Bassett, Rod Wilmont, Earl Calloway, D.J. White.
Looks like Sampson is going to let White go right at Oden.
Five minutes to tip-off, Ohio State is taking the floor. All the fans are waiving white towels here at cavernous Value City Arena. No, you can not purchase unreasonably cheap electronics here.
Columbus is an interesting city, in as far as it’s a city. Sure they love their Buckeyes but it’s more a professional town in many ways. This crowd is late arriving and interested in spectacle of it all as much as they are the basketball right now. It should fill up in the next couple of minutes.
Of all the games this season for Ratliff to miss, this just might be the worst. The Hoosiers match up OK with Ohio State at center (7-0 Oden vs. 6-9 D.J. White) and forward (6-7 Ivan Harris vs. 6-8 Lance Stemler). Earl Calloway is quick enough to at least slow down Mike Conley Jr. at point guard.
But what answer does Indiana have for guards Ron Lewis and Jamar Butler? Lewis is 6-4 and probably would have had to deal with the lanky Ratliff.
Think Sampson will try some sort of zone? Don’t be surprised to see him mix it up and just hope to keep Ohio State guessing. This isn’t Southern Illinois, where a 1-3-1 zone took away the wings and basically stopped the Salukis’ offense. Ohio State will hit the three, drive and find some way to get the ball into Greg Oden.
Let the Big Ten season begin.
The Hoosiers and Buckeyes are on the floor warming up here in Columbus. The proper chill has filled the air outside and it’s time for conference play to begin.
A.J. Ratliff has been warming up a little but is not taking part in every drill. His sprained left wrist is in a brace. Certainly looks like he will not be available tonight.