Ohio State males‘s basketball | Pregame Studying: Buckeyes face Wolverines

Adam Jardy The Columbus Dispatch

Throughout his first season at Ohio State, coach Chris Holtmann has credited the leadership of Jae’Sean Tate and Keita Bates-Diop for helping make the Buckeyes one of the nation’s most-surprising stories of the season

Now those two will be put to the test anew. Needing a win to move back into a tie with Michigan State atop the Big Ten standings after a lopsided loss at Penn State three days ago, Ohio State looks to bounce back – or at least play with more fire than it did against the Nittany Lions.

After the loss, I asked Bates-Diop how the two will try to lead from that loss.

“Make sure we learn from it,” he said. “Watch the film, break it down and go at it in practice and make sure it doesn’t happen again. We’re near the end of the season and we can’t make those kinds of mistakes we made today (when we play) in the Big Ten tournament.”

The Bryce Jordan Center had nearly 11,000 fans, creating a loud atmosphere Thursday night. Today is senior day at Michigan, and the Crisler Center is sold out.

“We’re going into, in my opinion, an even tougher environment with the rivalry and they’re going to have a ‘Maize Out’ and they’re a top-25 team,” Tate said. “It’s a top-25 matchup. We’ve got to learn from this, and it’s a quick turnaround. We’ve got to learn fast.”

The details

No. 8 Ohio State vs. No. 22 Michigan


Where: Crisler Arena; Ann Arbor, Mich.


Radio: OSU-IMG Sports Network (63 stations), Sirius 81/XM 81, WBNS-FM (97.1), WBNS-AM (1460)

Records: Ohio State 22-6, 13-2 Big Ten; Michigan 21-7, 10-5

Projected starters


G Jae’Sean Tate, 6-4, Sr., 12.4

G C.J. Jackson, 6-1, Jr., 12.5

F Andre Wesson, 6-6, So., 2.6

F Keita Bates-Diop, 6-7, Jr., 19.6

C Kaleb Wesson, 6-9, Fr., 11.0

Key reserves: G Kam Williams, 6-2, Sr., 7.8; C Micah Potter, 6-9, So., 4.4; G Andrew Dakich, 6-2, Gr., 3.2; G Musa Jallow, 6-5, Fr., 2.8; F Kyle Young, 6-8, Fr., 1.8


G Zavier Simpson, 6-0, So., 6.5

G Muhammad-Ali Abdur-Rahkman, 6-4, Sr., 11.7

F Charles Matthews, 6-6, So., 13.8

F Duncan Robinson, 6-8, Sr., 9.3

C Moritz Wagner, 6-11, Jr., 14.6

Key reserves: G Jordan Poole, 6-4, Fr., 5.9; F Isaiah Livers, 6-7, Fr., 4.3; C Jon Teske, 7-1, So., 3.7


*When Kaleb Wesson injured his ankle 1:48 into the Penn State game, Potter replaced him with the rest of the starters. That group had played together just once this year, two games earlier at Purdue, and Penn State outscored this group 10-0 before Dakich replaced Potter and the Buckeyes went small.

That same lineup save for Young in place of Potter put together a 5-0 run in 1:33 when the Penn State lead at 27 points early in the second half.

*Ohio State tied a season high with 21 different lineups of recruited scholarship players against the Nittany Lions. The Buckeyes also used 21 lineups against North Carolina, when foul trouble forced Holtmann to drastically alter his rotations.

*At Penn State on Thursday night, Ohio State scored a season-low 56 points, was a season-worst 2-of-15 (13.3 percent) from three and had a season-low nine assists.

*In its two games against Ohio State, Penn State averaged 80.5 points and shot 52.9 percent from the floor overall and 58.8 percent from three. In its other 13 Big Ten games, Ohio State has held its opponents to averages of 61.8 points, 39.0 percent overall shooting and 31.9 percent shooting from three.

*The Buckeyes have lost four straight games against Michigan while nationally ranked.

*This is the eighth time since 2012 that these schools have faced each other while both being ranked. Michigan holds a 4-3 edge in those games.

*The Wolverines are second nationally with an average of 9.32 turnovers per game and fourth nationally in assist-to-turnover ratio.

What does KenPom say?

According to the advanced statistics of KenPom, Ohio State has a 44 percent chance to win today’s game. After falling four spots to No. 15 in the national rankings following the loss to Penn State, Ohio State is projected to lose to Michigan by a score of 67-65. The Wolverines are ranked No. 25 in the country.

Pregame reading

This week, Andrew Dakich could become the third Michigan graduate transfer to win a Big Ten title in as many years. I talked with the last two guys to do so for today‘s Dispatch story.

That loss to Penn State? There were some troubling postgame phrases used. Here‘s my postgame blog from the Bryce Jordan Center.


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