Tag Archives: Ohio State Buckeyes

Curating the NCAA Tournament: Day One.

Once upon a time, before we had to remember how to find TruTv or learn of the existence of Lizard Lick Towing, every NCAA tournament game was on CBS. The scheduling types did their best to show games that would interest the audience, usually using geography as their guiding criteria. This meant that Big Ten games were usually on WCCO in Minneapolis, but it also meant that it was impossible to watch the lastest Cinderella hoping for an upset while a highly seeded Big Ten team was curb-stomping some hyphenated state school that no one had every heard of. It could be maddening, but it could also be magical. Because when the powers that be decided a game was out of hand, there was “whip around” coverage, a frantic effort to show as much of the last few seconds of as many games as possible. There was no way to predict what game would be shown, but there was sure to be drama and excitement. It was many shining moments back to back to back. In the Lizard Lick Towing era, it is all too easy to flip on your own to the right game at the right time, but all too difficult to know what game to watch before the waning moments of the latest upset.

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Poor defense, worse shot selection dooms the Gophers at Ohio State.

The Golden Gophers got off a great start at Ohio State on Saturday, but much like the second half of the Big Ten season, the second half of the game steadily spun out of control, as the Gophers lost 64-46. A loss wasn’t particularly surprising, and neither was the 18 point margin, but the way the loss occurred has to be particularly frustrating.

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Gophers have their best (but still small) chance to save their season against the Buckeyes

Everyone talks about the NCAA tournament bubble this time of year, but a better metaphor is probably a cliff. After losing a very winnable game against last place Illinois, the Golden Gophers are perched three short steps from the precipice. With each regular season loss, they get a step closer, and at step number three, they go over the edge, crashing into the NIT. A path to the NCAA tournament still exists, but it is fraught with danger.

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Gophers upset Ohio State in double-digit fashion

After near misses against Michigan and Michigan State in conference play, it was starting to look like the Gophers would never get over the hump of actually taking down one of the Big Ten’s top teams. Wins over Purdue and Penn State showed that they weren’t at the bottom of the barrel, but without a shiny, big-time win on their resume, Minnesota still appeared to be a middling team. That line of thinking is now officially outdated. Minnesota used a stifling defense and an impressive…

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The Opposition Opinion: A Q&A with Buckeye Banter

Matt Barker of Buckeye Banter graciously agreed to answer a few questions about the Ohio State Buckeyes, the first top 10 team to come to The Barn since Indiana last season. We answered some questions too, and you can read those answers here.

FTB: We all know that Ohio State has one of the best defenses in the country. What makes them so good? Please mention something other than Aaron Craft.

MB: It starts with Thad Matta’s starting lineup that features three guards. Then you mix in 6-foot-8 forward LaQuinton Ross with 6-foot-11 center Amir Williams and all five are very athletic. Plus, Matta has a deeper bench this season and you add some length with 6-foot-7 forwards Sam Thompson and Marc Loving, Williams is a good shot-blocker in the low post, but it all starts in the backcourt with Aaron Craft and Shannon Scott. I have to include Craft in this question since he’s the best on-ball defender in the country. Case in point, in five games over the last two seasons against Michigan, Trey Burke shot just 36 percent from the field and 30 percent from three-point range. While he did average 13.2 points and 5.2 assists, he also averaged 4.4 turnovers in those games against Craft.

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Reviewing the Résumé‎s: What each Big Ten team needs to do to dance.

At about this time last year, the Big Ten was widely considered to be the best conference in America. The Gophers were on the verge of being a top ten team, and Indiana, Ohio State, Michigan, and Michigan State all looked like national title contenders. The big questions entering the conference season involved how many Big Ten teams would make the final four. After a good but not great non-conference season, college basketball pundits are left with the much more pedestrian question of what various teams need to do just to make the NCAA tournament.

Instead of throwing out conference record predictions, or NCAA tournament seed projection, we’ll look at the non-conference performance of each Big Ten team, and the worst possible Big Ten record that could get each team in the tournament. That way, when your team starts struggling, you’ll know when to get nervous, and ultimately when to stop caring. In Minnesota, we have a word for this: February.

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2012-2013 schedule preview: the bonus wins.

The last set of games in our schedule preview hopefully will not determine if the Golden Gophers make the NCAA tournament, but will likely go a long way in determining how far they go in the NCAA tournament. If they win all the games in the must-win and should-win categories, they won’t be on the bubble, but they also shouldn’t expect to be much better than a nine seed in the NCAA tournament. Every win the Gophers can pick up in games they should not…

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Barn Blurbs 4/2/2012

We’ll get around to reviewing the Golden Gophers 2011-2012 season at some point. Until then, we’ll be resurrecting Barn Blurbs, our occasional round-up of stories around the series of tubes about Gopher Basketball and college basketball in general. Hiring a coach is a lottery It turns out that any coaching hire is a 50-50 proposition, unless, say, you are hiring one of the power coaches. Tubby Smith falls under that category, and some would argue he hasn’t worked out. Keep this article in your back…

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Loss to Buckeyes shrinks Gopher margin for error

Holy Buford. The Gophers came into their contest against national powerhouse Ohio State with aspirations of upsetting a top-6 team, grabbing another signature win for their tournament resume and sending the Buckeyes packing for the fourth time in the last five games between the two teams at Williams Arena. Instead, Minnesota found itself on the wrong end of a 20-0 run, helplessly put Jared Sullinger at the free throw line 12 times and let William Buford run the show to the tune of 24 points,…

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