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tBBC TBBC Men’s Pre-game Glance: Ohio State Versus Illinois

Discussion in 'News' started by WVaBuckeye, Jan 2, 2016.

  1. WVaBuckeye

    WVaBuckeye Guest

    TBBC Men’s Pre-game Glance: Ohio State Versus Illinois
    via our good friends at Buckeye Battle Cry
    Visit their fantastic blog and read the full article (and so much more) here

    Ohio State(9-5) vs. Illinois(8-6)
    Day: Sunday
    Date: January 3rd, 2016
    Location: Value City Arena, Columbus
    Time: 5p.m. ET

    Coverage – TV: BTN – 97.1FM The FAN Radio

    School: University Of Illinois[​IMG]
    Location: Champaign, Illinois
    Founded: 1867
    Student Population: 32,878 Undergraduates, 11,209 Postgraduates
    School Type: Public
    Division: NCAA I
    Conference: Big Ten
    First Season: Facility 1905, they now play in State Farm Center
    Head Coach: John Groce, Fourth Season
    Record: 148-99 Overall; 63-43 currently
    Alma Mater: Taylor University 1994
    Experience & Accomplishments Groce graduated from Taylor University, an NAIA Division II school in Upland, Indiana, in 1994 and played basketball for the school while he was there.[1][2] Groce started his coaching career as an assistant with his alma mater, Taylor University, under Paul Patterson from 1993 to 1996. His next job was an assistant at North Carolina State University under Herb Sendek from 1996 to 2000. He then moved on to Butler University to join his good friend Thad Matta and was there just one season (2000–01). Together they then moved onto Xavier University where he was an assistant from 2001 to 2004, and moved again with Matta to Ohio State University as an assistant from 2004 to 2008

    * Information Courtesy of Wikipedia and Illini’ official site

    The Match-up

    The Buckeyes have been on a serious roll of late, especially since defeating the Kentucky Wildcats. It’s been a charge of the team coming together and playing some pretty good defense. That Buckeye’s defense held Minnesota to shooting a cold 36% from the field and the Gophers couldn’t get uncorked.

    The fighting Illini’ are struggling to put things together and lost at home to the Wolverines 78-68 despite a pretty good shooting night of 42.9%. The Illini’ are outscoring their opponents this season, although by only 1.3 a game. They have the makings for giving the Buckeyes some fits on Sunday.

    Buckeyes and Illini’

    Illinois leads the series with the Buckeyes, 101-69. Ohio State is 44-40 in Columbus. The Buckeyes have won the last four games vs. the Illini and 10 of the last 12. Overall, Thad Matta is 15-5 vs. Illinois and is 9-1 in Columbus.

    D’Angelo Russell scored 22 points, including eight during a decisive 15-0 second-half run, to lead No. 20 Ohio State past Illinois 77-61 Jan. 3, 2015 in Columbus. The Buckeyes trailed by eight in the first half and by three in the early minutes of the second. The Illini didn’t score from Kendrick Nunn’s 3 at the 16:33 mark until Nnanna Egwu hit two foul shots with 11:06 remaining. After Russell hit a 3 to tie it, substitute big man Trey McDonald made two free throws for the Buckeyes’ first lead of the day. Illinois never threatened again.

    Illinois enters the game with the Buckeyes with four Illini averaging 10 or more points a game. Junior guard Malcolm Hill (18.1 ppg.), junior guard Kendrick Nunn (19.0), graduate forward Mike Thorne Jr. (13.4) and freshman forward Michael Finke (10.1) lead a balanced Illinois offense. Thorne Jr.


    The Buckeyes are now led by a trio of up and comers in the B1G in Marc Loving(14.4 ppg), Keita Bates-Diop(13.0), and Jae’Sean Tate(11.4) all averaging double figures. They will have their work cut out for them against the Illini and will need to develop outside shooting quickly.

    The Illini come in needing to fix their Identity and should have no trouble with Ohio State’s former assistant, now head coach John Groce doing so. They have five players averaging in double figures and are a threat to beat the Buckeyes at home.

    The Buckeyes win in a close one until late 86-73

    The post TBBC Men’s Pre-game Glance: Ohio State Versus Illinois appeared first on The Buckeye Battle Cry: Ohio State News and Commentary.

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