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Dec. 27, 2002

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Opponent Tennessee State
Site Value City Arena (19,200)
Game Time Noon (EST)
TV ESPN Plus
Local TV WBNS Ch. 10
TV Talent Tom Hamilton (P-by-P), Bill Hosket (Color)
Radio OSU Radio Network (63 stations)
Local Radio WBNS FM-97.1 AM-1460
Radio Talent Paul Keels (P-by-P), Ron Stokes (Color)

Ohio State Buckeyes
Probable Starters (4-3)

G 4 – Brent Darby, 6-1, Sr.
G 3 – Sean Connolly, 6-5, Sr.
G 2 – Brandon Fuss-Cheatham, 6-1, So.
C 14 – Velimir Radinovic, 7-0, Jr.
F 33 – Zach Williams, 6-7, Jr.

Tennessee State Tigers
Probable Starters (2-5)

G 5 – Josh Cooperwood, 6-3, Sr.
G 12 – Brandon Lockridge, 6-0, Jr.
G 31 – Garrett Richardson, 6-3, Jr.
C 30 – Roshaun Bowens, 6-6, So.
F 44 – Cedric Bryson, 6-10, Jr.

Third OVC Team Visits VCA
Tennessee State is the third team from the Ohio Valley Conference to play the Buckeyes this year at Value City Arena. Ohio State already owns wins over Tennessee Tech (71-64, Dec. 7) and Morehead State (74-60. Dec. 14). The Buckeyes are 1-0 against Tennessee State, who fell 103-66 Dec. 17, 1990 in Columbus.

Tigers 2-5 to Start Season
Tennessee State won its season opener against Trevecca 107-94 before dropping four-consecutive games to Fisk, Iowa, Oral Roberts and Lipscomb. The Tigers got back in the win column with an 87-78 win over Morris Brown Dec. 18. Texas El-Paso then downed the Tigers 91-72 before the holiday break Dec. 21. Tennessee State is in the midst of a five-game road swing, which started with the game at Lipscomb. The travels end with TSU traveling to Columbus and Lexington, Ky., to face Kentucky Monday.

Bowens Close to Double-Double Avg.
Sophomore forward Roshaun Bowens is the leading scorer for Tennessee State this season. He tops his teammates with 17.6 points per game and is followed by senior guard Josh Cooperwood (14.0 ppg.) and junior guard Garrett Richardson and junior guard Brandon Lockridge, each with 10.3 ppg. Bowens also leads the Tigers with 8.9 rebounds per game.

UTEP Stops Tigers Before Holidays
Tennessee State hit its first five shots from the field and led much of the first half, but host Texas-El Paso displayed consistent shooting from the field in both halves on its way to handing the Tigers a 91-72 loss last Saturday. The game started at a hectic pace. The teams had combined for 35 points just four minutes in the game as TSU lead 18-17. Josh Cooperwood and Brandon Lockridge each hit a pair of 3-pointers during the streak. The lead would exchange hands nine times in the opening half and UTEP carried a 46-44 lead into halftime. In the second half, UTEP shot 61 percent from the field while the Tigers were shooting 39 percent. TSU made 8-14 3-pointers in the first half, but just 3-11 in the final 20 minutes. Roshuan Bowens once again led TSU with 23 points, shooting 7-9 field goals. Lockridge hit his first four 3-pointers of the game and finished with 15 points. Cooperwood finished with 13 points. Junior guard Garrett Richardson, making the return home to play in front of the home crowd, was limited to one 3-point field goal, but handed out six assists.

Buckeyes Own 12-0 Rcd. vs. the OVC
Ohio State has played every member of the Ohio Valley Conference except Austin Peay and Southeast Missouri State. The Buckeyes are 12-0 all-time in games vs. the OVC, including victories over Tennessee Tech and Morehead State this year.

OSU vs. the OVC Austin Peay 0-0 Eastern Illinois 1-0 Eastern Kentucky 3-0 Morehead State 2-0 Murray State 1-0 Southeast Missouri State 0-0 Tennessee Martin 1-0 Tennessee State 1-0 Tennessee Tech 3-0 Totals 12-0

Richardson III in Year Three at TSU
Nolan Richardson III is in his third season as the head coach of the Tigers. He has a career record of 23-41 during his time with TSU.

This Date In History
Ohio State is 18-17 in games played on Dec 28. Games on this date have typically been played in a holiday tournament of some sort. The last non-tournament or special event game played on this date was a 58-54 win over Eastern Michigan in 1982.

OSU on Dec. 28 12/28/16 W vs Westinghouse 38-18 12/28/19 W @Youngstown Duq. 35-18 12/28/29 W Notre Dame 29-22 12/28/32 W Notre Dame 30-24 12/28/34 L @Temple 24-28 12/28/36 W @California 30-28 12/28/40 L Princeton 31-40 12/28/41 L @California 38-50 12/28/43 W @Norfolk Navy 62-54 12/28/44 W @Michigan State 67-31 12/28/46 L @California 32-48 12/28/49 W vs Cornell 43-42 12/28/51 L @Washington 43-78(3) 12/28/55 W DePaul 83(15)-72 12/28/56 L vs Manhattan 67-82 12/28/57 L vs UCLA 78-98 12/28/59 L @Kentucky 93(3)-96(13) 12/28/61 W vs UCLA 105(1)-84 12/28/63 L @Utah State 66-79 12/28/64 W Dartmouth 90-59 12/28/65 W Wake Forest 88-81 12/28/70 L vs Stanford (ot) 74-78 12/28/74 L vs Indiana 71-102(2) 12/28/75 L vs Tulane 65-80 12/28/76 L vs Princeton 62-67 12/28/77 L vs Georgia(ot) 80-84 12/28/82 W Eastern Michigan 58-54 12/28/84 W vs Stetson 73-67 12/28/86 L vs Arkansas 94-97 12/28/89 W vs New Orleans 74-66 12/28/90 W vs Miami (Ohio) 85(6)-67 12/28/92 W vs Oregon State 85-77 12/28/95 W vs Eastern Kentucky 92-88 12/28/96 L vs Kentucky 65-81(3) 12/28/97 L vs Kansas 56-69(2)

Buckeyes Stay Perfect at Home With 96-80 win over Radford
Sean Connolly scored 20 points and Emonte Jernigan sparked a key first-half run that helped Ohio State beat Radford 96-80. Struggling to keep up with the smaller Highlanders, the Buckeyes went to a four-guard lineup midway through the first half and turned the game around. Jernigan, getting extended playing time after forward Zach Williams picked up his second foul, had two layups – one off his own steal – in a 10-0 run that gave the Buckeyes a 31-24 lead. Jernigan also hit two of his three 3-point attempts and scored 10 of his 12 points in the first half as the Buckeyes took a 43-37 halftime lead. Ohio State pushed its advantage to double digits in the opening minutes of the second half. Velimir Radinovic added a career-high 19 points and eight rebounds, and Brent Darby had 19 points and eight assists for the Buckeyes. Raymond Arrington scored 27 points and Whit Holcomb-Faye had 20 points and nine assists for Radford (2-7). Connolly made 6-of-8 3-pointers and teamed with Jernigan to help carry the Buckeyes before halftime. Connolly had 14 points – 12 on 3s – in the first half, when the Buckeyes hit 8-of-13 from 3-point range. Ohio State finished 10-of-19 beyond the arc.

Noting the Win over Radford

The Buckeyes are 2-0 all-time against Radford and 4-0 all-timeagainst teams in the Big South. Ohio State has posted a 5-0 recordat Value City Arena this season. The Buckeyes are 63-8 all-time ingames played on their home floor. The Buckeyes have played withjust one day of rest following a game 17 times in Jim O’Brien’stenure at Ohio State. The squad is 11-6 in that situation and 11-1since the 1998-99 season in regular season action. For the firsttime this season, five players scored in double figures for theBuckeyes against Radford. Ohio State had five players score indouble figures against Michigan during the 2002 Big Ten Tournament(3/8/02). When scoring 70 or more points in a game, the Buckeyeshave posted a 4-1 record this season and are 76-18 in O’Brien’s sixyears at Ohio State. Radford netted 15 3-point field goals againstthe Buckeyes, the most for any opponent in Value City Arena.Coastal Carolina recorded 14 Dec. 13, 1999. Radford’s RaymondArrington also tied a VCA record for opponents, hitting seven3-point field goals. A.J. Guyton of Indiana also had seven Jan. 9,1999. Senior Sean Connolly tied career-high with six 3-point fieldgoals and also tied a Value City Arena record for most 3-pointfield goals in a game by an Ohio State player. The last timeConnolly hit six 3-pointers was against Notre Dame (12/8/98) whileat Providence. He shares the VCA record with two other players,Michael Redd and Sconnie Penn. The last to hit six 3-pointers wasPenn against Wisconsin (2/24/99). Connolly has nailed at least one3-pointer in the last nine games is shooting .619 (13-21) from3-point land in the past three games. Connolly has reached doublefigures in all eight games for the Buckeyes this season. JuniorVelimir Radinovic scored a career-high 19 points against Radfordand has totaled 32 points, his career best, in back-to-back games.This is the first time in his career where he has reached doublefigures in back-to-back contests. Of his 32 points, 15 of them havecome from the charity stripe, including 6-7 against Seton Hall and9-11 versus Radford. Senior Brent Darby tied a career-high eightassists. He also had eight assists earlier this season againstTennessee Tech (12/7). With one 3-point field goal against theHighlanders, Darby is sixth on the Ohio State career 3-point list(115). He needs 10 more to move into fifth place. Boban Savovic iscurrently fifth (125) and Michael Redd is sixth (126). Darby’s 19points gave him 921 for his career. He needs 79 more points to moveinto 41st place on the Ohio State career-scoring list. Christ Jentis currently 40th with 1,007 points. Junior Emonte Jernigan tallied12 points, his most as a Buckeye. He scored eight points againstCoppin State in his first appearance wearing scarlet and gray.Senior Shaun Smith scored a career-high five points in two minutesof action for the Buckeyes. His previous career high was fourpoints scored last season against UNC-Wilmington (12/2/01).

Non-Conference Foes go 1-2-3 in AP/ESPN/USA Today Polls
Ohio State is scheduled to play five teams and six games against teams currently ranked in the Associated Press Top 10, a total of six in the Top 25 and another three (Minnesota, Wisconsin and Louisville) receiving votes for Top 25 consideration. No. 1/3 (ESPN/USA Today) Alabama, No. 2/2 Pittsburgh, No. 3/1 Duke, No. 7/7 Illinois and No. 10/11 Indiana are on the OSU schedule this year. With games vs. No. 1 Alabama, No. 3 Duke and No. 2 Pittsburgh in the books, the Buckeyes will welcome Indiana to Columbus. Indiana and the Buckeyes play twice in a span of 11 days beginning with a home game Jan. 11 and ending with a road contest Jan. 21. Ohio State travels to No. 7 Illinois Feb. 9. No. 15 Michigan State plays host to the Buckeyes Jan. 9 in the Big Ten opener.

Fuss-Cheatham Returns to Action, Jenkins Still Recovering
Brandon Fuss-Cheatham, a sophomore point guard, and Shun Jenkins, a junior forward, have missed game action while recovering from injuries suffered Nov. 22 against the Harlem Globetrotters in the final exhibition game. Fuss-Cheatham, who started both exhibition contests this year, went down with an injury to his left knee. The injury, a partially torn lateral meniscus, required arthroscopic surgery Nov. 25. Fuss-Cheatham returned to action with six minutes of playing time against Morehead State Dec. 14. He made his first career start Dec. 18 vs. Pittsburgh and played 26 minutes. He also started against Seton Hall and Radford. He left the Radford game as a precaution after playing just five minutes with soreness in his injured knee. Jenkins suffered a broken little finger on his left hand. He had surgery Nov. 27 and has missed the first eight games of the season to date. He had the pins removed Dec. 19. He has been cleared for limited contact in practice and could be cleared to play against Tennessee State and Hampton.

Connolly on Scoring Streak
Senior Sean Connolly has reached double figures offensively in each of the eight games this season. The streak is the longest since he opened his freshman campaign at Providence with six-consecutive double-digit games.

Darby Third in Scoring in Big Ten
Senior Brent Darby is the Big Ten’s third leading scorer with 17.4 points a game. He has reached 30 or more points twice this season and leads Ohio State in scoring, 3-point shooting (17-39/.436), foul shooting (42-51/.824), assists (42) and steals (13).

Connolly Reaches 100 Games Played
Sean Connolly reached 100 games played against Seton Hall. Connolly played a total of 30 games at Providence and has appeared in 71 at Ohio State. Brent Darby as played in 98 games as a Buckeye with 56 career starts.

Buckeyes to Play 8 of 9 Games at VCA
After six games in which Ohio State opened the season with a pair of neutral games, one road contest and three home games, the Buckeyes will play eight of the next nine games in Columbus. The next five games, vs. Seton Hall (W 74-51), Radford (W 96-80), Tennessee State, Hampton and Louisville will be played at home before the Big Ten opener at Michigan State Jan. 9. The Buckeyes will then play host to conference foes Indiana, Michigan and Wisconsin.

Darby on Preseason All-League Squad
Both the Big Ten Conference men’s basketball coaches and the league’s media selected Brent Darby to the Big Ten Preseason All-Conference Team. Darby joins Brian Cook (Illinois), Tom Coverdale (Indiana), Kirk Penney (Wisconsin) and Rick Rickert (Minnesota) on the preseason squad. The Buckeyes have had a preseason first team member in each of the last four seasons. Michael Redd made the team in 1998, Scoonie Penn and Redd in 1999, Ken Johnson in 2000 and Brian Brown in 2001.

Darby Closing on 1,000 Pts., Reaches 100 Made 3-pointers
Senior guard Brent Darby is sixth all-time in career 3-pointers made with 115 after knocking down one long-range attempt against Radford. Darby also has 921 career points. He has averaged 353 the last two years with a career-high of 409 as a junior. He is on pace to become Ohio State’s 41st player all-time to reach 1,000 career points. At least one player has reached 1,000 points in each of the last four years. Michael Redd (5th/1,879) and Jason Singleton (39th/1,022) reached 1,000 in 1999 followed by Scoonie Penn (34th/1,076) in 2000, Ken Johnson (36th/1,055) in 2001 and Brian Brown (19th/1,384) in 2002.

Buckeyes Seek 20th 20-Win Season
Jim O’Brien has guided the Buckeyes to 20-win seasons in each of the last four years. Another 20-victory campaign in 2002-03 would set an Ohio State record for consecutive seasons (5) with 20 or more wins. Only the 1960-1963 teams won more games over a four-year period (98) than O’Brien’s last four squads, which finished with 94 victories. Ohio State teams have won 20 or more games 19 times in 104 years of basketball.

Buckeyes Also On Big Ten Win Streak
Ohio State has won 11 or more games in Big Ten Conference play in each of the last four years, winning co-championships in 2000 and 2002, finishing second in 1999 and third in 2001. Only the 1960-64 teams, which won or shared a record five-consecutive Big Ten titles, had a more successful stretch in league play.

Opponent Experience Prevalent
The Buckeyes will play a total of 15 regular-season games against teams that participated in postseason competition in 2002. Ten games will be against NCAA tournament teams with the remaining five against National Invitation Tournament participants. Alabama and Duke provided NCAA tournament-tested opponents in two of the first three games of the season. When January rolls around, the Buckeyes will face a stretch of seven games against six opponents with 2002 postseason experience. Three of those battles are against 2002 Big Ten Champions Indiana, twice, and Wisconsin. Another is against Michigan State, the 2002-03 preseason favorite win with the league title.

Sylvester Back Sooner Than Expected
When redshirt freshman Matt Sylvester underwent successful back surgery Aug. 7, he was expected to miss significant practice time while recuperating. He has progressed ahead of schedule and is participating in full practices with the Buckeyes. The 6-7 guard missed the majority of his freshman season with calf and back injuries. He was granted a medical redshirt year by the NCAA and will retain four years of eligibility at Ohio State. He made his first career start in the season opener against Coppin State. He has played in a seven games to date for an average of 18 minutes a game.

Three Card Monte, LaMonta, Emonte
When Jim O’Brien looks down his bench this season, he’ll have a full compliment of Monte’s with assistant coach LaMonta (la-MON-tay) Stone, Monte (MON-tee) Mathis and junior guard Emonte (e-MON-tee) Jernigan. O’Brien also will have a trio of players, who use the same pronunciation but different spellings of the first name (SHAWN). Seniors Sean Connolly and Shaun Smith along with junior Shun Jenkins all pronounce their names the same.

O’Brien Selected for NCAA Committee
Jim O’Brien will serve as one of four NCAA Division I men’s basketball coaches on the NCAA Basketball Issues Committee. O’Brien will serve for one year. Coaches and administrators on this committee will meet to discuss NCAA Division I men’s basketball issues.

Stockman, Sullinger Wait for 2003-04
A pair of Ohio natives will be on the bench during home games this season but will not dress, travel or play this season. Sophomore J.J. Sullinger and junior Tony Stockman transferred to Ohio State from Arkansas and Clemson, respectively, following the 2001-02 season. Both will practice with the Buckeyes this year and will begin their eligibility in 2003-04. Sullinger will have three years of eligibility with the Buckeyes. Stockman will have two.

Jernigan Familiar with Adjusting
Junior guard Emonte Jernigan knows how to adjust to new challenges as a student-athlete. He began his career as a junior college player before signing to play NCAA Division I basketball with Oregon State. After one season with the Beavers, Jernigan left to attend another junior college for the 2001-02 campaign. He did not play organized basketball last year and will have two seasons of eligibility at Ohio State. His season out of basketball last year allows him to play immediately at Ohio State

O’Brien Welcomes Changes in Staff
Paul Biancardi, a longtime assistant to Jim O’Brien both at Boston College and Ohio State, was promoted to associate head coach in the offseason. Bruce Parkhill, who held the spot for two seasons, returned to his native State College, Pa., to spend more time with his family. In addition to Biancardi’s new role, a couple other positions were filled over the summer. LaMonta Stone, who last coached at Eastern Michigan, accepted one of the assistant positions on O’Brien’s staff. Monte Mathis, who was a full-time assistant on an interim basis in 2001-02 was made a full-time assistant as well. Andy Murphy, who had been a volunteer helping with the video needs of the OSU program, took over that spot on a full-time basis this year.

Winning Percentage Soars for O’Brien in Last Four Seasons
Jim O’Brien has won nearly 72 percent of the games he’s coached at Ohio State after an 8-22 record in his first season with the Buckeyes. O’Brien is 98-38 (.721) in the 136 games following the 1997-98 campaign, his first in Columbus. The Buckeyes have won 20 or more games and advanced to the NCAA tournament in each of the last four seasons, while finishing in the Top 3 in the Big Ten regular season race all four years, winning a pair of Big Ten regular titles (2000 and 2002) and a claiming one Big Ten tournament crown (2002).

Value City Arena Serves Buckeyes Well
The Buckeyes began their fifth season in Value City Arena in the 2002-03 home opener against Coppin State. Ohio State is 63-8 (.887) in games played on the home floor since the building opened for the start of the 1998-99 campaign.

Buckeyes Play 104th Hoops Season, 91st in Big Ten Conference
Ohio State has a record of 82-22 (.788) in season-opening games over the 104 years of men’s basketball at OSU. The Buckeyes are 86-18 (.827) in home openers and 49-54 (.476) in road/neutral openers. Ohio State did not play a road game in 1900-01. This is the 91st season of Big Ten membership in men’s basketball for the Buckeyes. Ohio State is 50-40 (.556) in conference openers, 61-29 (.678) in league home openers and 34-56 (.378) in the first road game of the season in Big Ten play.