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Dec. 17, 2015

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The Ohio State Buckeyes (5-5) vs. No. 4 Kentucky (9-1)

Date: Dec. 19, 2015
Site: Barclays Center (18,103)
Game Time: 3:30 p.m.
Television: CBS
Talent: Verne Lundquist (Play-By-Play)
Bill Raftery (Expert Analysis)
Allie LaForce (Sideline)
Radio: OSU-IMG Sports Network (56 stations)
Satellite Radio: Sirius 84/XM 84
Local Radio: WBNS-FM 97.1, AM-1460
Radio Talent: Paul Keels (play-by-play)
Ron Stokes (Expert Anelysis)

Starting Five
•    Ohio State has shot better from the field than its opponent in nine of 10 games this season and is 5-5 to date. Ohio State outshot 23 opponents a year ago and was 23-0 in those games. In the Matta era, the Buckeyes have outshot foes 295 times and are 267-28 in those games (.905).
•    Opponents are shooting 77.0 percent (137-178) from the foul line against the Buckeyes, the seventh best nationally. Hawaii foes are shooting 78.4 percent to lead the country. Only three power five conference teams are among the Top 20 in free throw percentage defense–Ohio State at No. 7, Kansas at No. 12 (.756) and Illinois at No. 24 (.744).
•    Thad Matta has coached 403 games at Ohio State, the third most in school history. Harold G. Olsen (1923-46) and Fred Taylor (1959-76), have reached 400 or more games at Ohio State. Olsen coached 456 (259-197) and Taylor 455 (297-158).
•    Currently, Matta has the second longest tenure in the Big Ten with 12 years on the sidelines in Columbus. Tom Izzo at Michigan State has been with the Spartans over the last 21 seasons.
•    Streaks: Marc Loving has made at least one 3-pointer in nine of 10 games this season … Loving has scored 10 or more points in nine of 10 games as well … JaQuan Lyle leads Ohio State with 48 assists with at least four helpers in six of the last nine games … Keita Bates-Diop has been to the foul line at least twice in nine of 10 games … he leads the team making 82 percent on the year at the stripe (27-32)  … as a team Ohio State has rejected at least four opposing shots in nine of 10 games this season.       

Buckeyes Seldom Rejected
In 10 games this season, opponents have blocked just 16 of Ohio State’s 555 field goal attempts, tied for the fifth fewest in the country. Ohio State, which did not block a shot in its game vs. Connecticut, has blocked 59 of its 573 opponent shot attempts, tied for 17th most nationally. Ohio State opponents have rejected just 2.9 percent of the Buckeyes shot attempts while Ohio State swats 10.3 percent of its foes attempts. The Buckeyes are third in the Big Ten in average blocks per game with 5.9.

Ohio State in the Big Ten
Marc Loving is ninth in scoring among Big Ten Conference players with 15.9 points per game, which leads the Buckeyes. Jae’Sean Tate is tied for the No. 9 spot in rebounding with 6.7 boards a game. Keita Bates-Diop is tied for the No. 5 spot in foul shooting at 84.4 percent (27-32). JaQuan Lyle is No. 6 in assists per game with an average of 4.8 helpers a game. Daniel Giddens is No. 2 in the league in blocks per game at 2.5 a game. He also is No. 8 in offensive boards a contest with 2.1. Tate is No. 8 in defensive rebounds a game (5.2). Loving is fifth in minutes per game (35.0).  

Last Time vs. Kentucky
Brandon Knight answered a tying 3-pointer by the Buckeyes’ Jon Diebler with a floating jumper in the closing seconds, allowing Wildcats to stun the No. 1 overall seed Buckeyes 62-60 March 26, 2011. It was the final game of David Lighty’s lengthy college career. He came in as part of the 2006-07 recruiting class that included Greg Oden, Mike Conley Jr., Daequan Cook and Othello Hunter. It was the final game for Diebler, the leading schoolboy scorer in the state of Ohio, and perhaps the best 3-point shooter in the history of the Big Ten. He hit four more 3s against the Wildcats, including a critical tying shot from well beyond the arc with 10 seconds left. Freshman Jared Sullinger had 21 points and 16 rebounds. It was also the first time that Ohio State lost to Kentucky in the NCAA tournament, winning the previous five meetings.

Ohio State Series History vs. UK
1/2/33     W     @Kentucky    46-30
12/27/39     L     Kentucky    30-36
12/13/41     W     Kentucky    43-41
1/1943    W     @Kentucky    45-40
12/13/43    L    Kentucky    28-40
12/23/44     L     @Kentucky (ot)     48-53
3/2245     W     1-vs. Kentucky     45-37
12/4/57     L     Kentucky     54-61
12/19/58     L     2-@Kentucky    76-95(2)
12/28/59     L     @Kentucky     93(3)-96(13)
3/18/61     W     3-vs. Kentucky     87(1)-74
3/17/62     W     4-vs. Kentucky    74(1)-64(3)
3/16/68     W     5-vs. Kentucky     82-81(5)
12/3/80     L    @Kentucky     64(9)-70(2)
12/5/81     L     Kentucky    62-78(2)
3/13/87     W     6-vs. Kentucky    91-77
12/22/93     L     7-vs. Kentucky    88-100(5)
12/28/96     L     8-vs. Kentucky    65-81(3)
3/25/11    L    9-vs. Kentucky    60(1)-62(11)
1-NCAA East Regionals, New York
2-Kentucky Invitational, Lexington, Ky..
3-NCAA Mideast Regionals, Louisville, Ky.
4-NCAA Mideast Regionals, Iowa City, Iowa
5-NCAA Mideast Regionals, Lexington, Ky.
6-NCAA First Round, Atlanta, Ga.
7-Maui Invitational, Maui, Hawaii
8-Gatorade Rock-n-Roll Shootout, Cleveland, Ohio
9-NCAA East Regional Semifinals, Newark, New Jersey
 
Scouting Kentucky
Kentucky enters the game with the Buckeyes as the No. 4 team in the country, sporting a 9-1 overall record. Four Wildcats average 10 or more points a game. Freshman guard Jamal Murray leads the way with 15.5 ppg. He is followed by rookie guard Isaiah Briscoe (12.4 ppg.), sophomore guard Tyler Ullis (12.1 ppg.) and freshman forward Skal Labissiere (10.6 ppg.). Senior forward Alex Poythress is the squad’s top rebounder with 7.3 boards a game.

Ohio State vs. the Southeastern Conference
Ohio State is 37-34 all-time vs. the current alignment of the Southeastern Conference. Ohio State last faced an SEC opponent Dec. 17, 2011 at South Carolina, a 74-66 win for the No. 2 Buckeyes.

OHIO STATE VS. SEC
Alabama    2-2
Arkansas    1-2
Auburn
Florida    8-4
Georgia    0-1
Kentucky    8-11
Louisiana State    1-1
Mississippi    1-0
Mississippi State    1-0
Missouri    4-5
South Carolina    3-1
Tennessee    4-2
Texas A&M    1-2
Vanderbilt    3-3
Totals    37-34

For more on the Buckeyes click on the Ohio State Notes link above.