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No. 15 Ohio State (10-3, 0-1) at Michigan (6-6, 0-1)

Jan. 3, 2010
Opponent:              Michigan (6-6, 0-1)
Site:                      Crisler Arena (13,751)
Game Time:           4:30 p.m. ET
Television:             Big Ten Network
Talent:                  Tom Hamilton (play-by-play)
                            Greg Kelser (expert analysis)
Radio:                   OSU Radio Network (60 stations)
Local Radio:           WBNS FM-97.1 AM-1460
Radio Talent:         Paul Keels (play-by-play)
                            Ron Stokes (expert analysis)

Ohio State to Celebrate 1960 Team
     The 1960 Ohio State men’s basketball team will be honored at halftime of the Minnesota game Jan. 31 at Value City Arena (1 p.m./CBS). The squad won the NCAA and Big Ten titles that season with a 25-3 record and a 13-1 mark in the Big Ten. A reception will be held Jan. 30 at St. John Arena from 7-9 p.m. Limited availability remains. For more information and for reservations ($100 for individuals and $175 for couples) for the “Cocktails & Hightops” event can be made by calling 614-292-9908. Reservation deadline is Jan. 20. The entire team is expected back for this weekend, including three-time All-American and  Big Ten Player of the Year Jerry Lucas, All-American and two-time All-Big Ten selection John Havlicek and Bob Knight, the NCAA career leader in coaching victories (Army, Indiana and Texas Tech) with 902. All three are members of the Basketball Hall of Fame.

Buckeyes Open 98th Season In Big Ten Conference
     This is the 98th season of Big Ten membership in men’s basketball for the Buckeyes. Ohio State is 54-42 (.563) in conference openers, 63-30 (.677) in league home openers and 35-59 (.372) in the first road game of the season in Big Ten play. Ohio State has opened Big Ten play on the road 42 times and has an 18-24 record in those games.

Matta Owns Top Win Percentage among Ohio State Coaches
     Thad Matta, now in his sixth season as head coach of the Buckeyes, has an overall win percentage of .737 (137-49) after 186 games at Ohio State. That winning mean is the highest among the 11 head coaches in the history of the Ohio State men’s basketball program with three or more seasons on the sidelines. Matta’s 55-30 record in Big Ten regular-season play (.647) also has produced the highest winning percentage in conference play among any previous Ohio State coach. Fred Taylor (1959-76) is second in both overall win percentage (.653/297-158) and Big Ten win percentage (.608/158-102) in 18 seasons.

Lighty Earns Ohio State’s 4th League Player of the Week honor, first of career
 Starting with a dunk at 13:12 in the second half, the Dec. 22 ESPN Top Play of the Day, the Buckeyes went on a 16-6 run with junior forward David Lighty scoring 15 of Ohio State’s 16 points during a 5:47 stretch in a 72-59 win over Cleveland State. Lighty, the Big Ten Player of the Week, finished with a team-high 30 points (9-of-16) with seven rebounds and five assists vs. his hometown school. His 30 points was a career-high. He is the first Buckeye since Jamar Butler to reach the 30-point mark. Butler had 32 points vs. Illinois Jan. 3, 2008. Lighty reached the 700-point mark in his career against the Vikings and now has 717 points. Lighty scored at least 20 points for the fifth time in his career and third time this season. He has had at least 20 points in two of the last three games. Against CSU, Lighty had a team-high five assists and has scored in double-digits in his  fifth-consecutive game, a career-long streak of at least 10 points. From behind the arc, Lighty went 3-of-5, which tied his career high in 3-pointers made. Lighty made nine free-throws on 13 free-throw attempts, both career highs. Evan Turner was named the Big Ten’s player of the week three times before suffering a back injury Dec. 5 vs. Eastern Michigan.

Matta reaches double-digit wins vs. non-conference foes  
 Thad Matta has directed Ohio State to at least 10 wins during non-conference play in each of six seasons in Columbus and is 10-3 this season with one game to play against a non-Big Ten Conference opponent. Matta is 75-15 vs. non-conference competition at Ohio State and 62-34 vs. Big Ten competition for an overall record of 137-49. Ohio State has West Virginia (Jan. 23) remaining on the non-conference schedule. Big Ten play begins Dec. 31 in Madison against Wisconsin.
             Non-Conference    Big Ten    Overall
Yr.               W L                W  L         W L
2005           11 3                9 9          20 12
2006           12 1               14 5         26 6
2007           17 3               18 1         35 4
2008           14 4               10 9         24 13
2009           11 2               11 9         22 11
2010           10 2                0 1          10 3
                  75 15             62 34      137 49

Buckeyes comfortable at VCA
 Ohio State is 9-0 at home to date and shooting well on familiar ground. The Buckeyes are shooting 54 percent as a team at home this season and 43 percent from 3-point range. The team has reached 100 or more points three times and average a margin of victory of +30.4. Five Buckeyes average more than 10 points a game, led by Evan Turner’s 16.5 points per game before his injury. Jon Diebler and David Lighty add 15 ppg. Diebler is making 52 percent of his field goals (42-81) and 53 percent of his 3-point attempts (35-66). Six Buckeyes are shooting 50 percent or better at home and four are making 60 percent or better. Dallas Lauderdale has missed five shots on the VCA court this season. He is 26-31 overall (.839). Jeremie Simmons has connected on 31 of 49 FG attempts (.633) and Kyle Madsen is 12 of 19 (.632). Evan Turner was shooting 60 percent overall before injuring his back vs. Eastern Michigan Dec. 5.

Michigan Up next for Buckeyes On Road
 Ohio State begins Big Ten Conference play with its second-consecutive road game and second of four over the first five league games of the season. The Buckeyes own an 85-70 advantage in the all-time series with the Wolverines. Michigan is 43-35 in Ann Arbor vs. Ohio State. Ohio State is 27-4 all-time when facing the Badgers as a ranked team in the Associated Press poll. Evan Turner is the leading scorer for the Buckeyes in the Michigan series with an average of 14.8 points a game over four career meetings vs. the Wolverines. William Buford averaged 12.0 points in his first two Michigan games a year ago. Turner averages 6.5 rebounds in the series vs. the Wolverines to lead the Buckeyes.

Ohio State vs. the Big Ten
Illinois               59-99
Indiana              70-99
Iowa                  65-73
Michigan            85-70
Michigan State    49-58
Minnesota          74-54
Northwestern      106-45
Penn State         22-12
Purdue              74-81
Wisconsin          80-64
Totals             684-655

LAST TIME VS. The Wolverines
Jan. 28, 2009: Ohio State 72, Michigan 54
 Evan Turner scored 14 of his 22 points as Ohio State built an 18-point first-half lead, and the Buckeyes hung on to beat Michigan 72-54. It was the second time in two weeks the Buckeyes had beaten the Wolverines. Jeremie Simmons matched his then career high with 12 points for Ohio State. B.J. Mullens also had 12 points. Manny Harris had a triple-double of sorts for Michigan, totaling 22 points, 12 rebounds and 10 turnovers. DeShawn Sims added 13 points. A boisterous student section helped keep the momentum in the Buckeyes’ favor. Ohio State students, who did not have class because of the winter storm, were admitted into the game for free.
 
NOTING THE WISCONSIN GAME  (Dec. 31)

  • Ohio State is now 54-42 in conference openers, including an 18-24 mark when playing on the road.
  • In the 144th meeting, the Buckeyes hold an 80-64 advantage in the all-time series vs. the Badgers, though they trail 41-28 in Madison. Ohio State is 19-10 all-time when facing Wisconsin as a ranked team. Thursday marked the sixth meeting between the teams when both were ranked in the current Associated Press poll (OSU, 4-2). The last win for Ohio State as a ranked team on Wisconsin’s home floor was a 76-63 victory Feb. 15, 1992.
  • Ohio State has a record of 131-218 vs. teams ranked in the Associated Press Top 25, including a 2-3 mark this season. Its last win over a ranked team was Nov. 20 against then-No. 20 California, 76-70, in Madison Square Garden.
  • Ohio State closed out the first half with an 8-2 run, closing the gap to 34-25 after trailing by as much as 16 earlier in the period (28-12 at 7:28).
  • William Buford led the Buckeyes in scoring with 14 points, marking the sixth-consecutive game with double-digit points.
  • With a 3-pointer in the first half, Jon Diebler marked his 22nd-consecutive with at least one made trey. The last time he was held scoreless from behind the arc was Feb. 14, 2009, against Wisconsin.
  • David Lighty chipped in 10 points to record his sixth-consecutive game with 10 or more points, a career-long streak.

 Turner to Miss 8 weeks with Back injury
 Junior Evan Turner fell hard to the floor on a dunk attempt early in the first half vs. Eastern Michigan Dec. 5. He left the game and tests revealed a fracture in his lower back. He is expected to miss eight weeks recovering from the injury. After eight games, Turner led the Buckeyes in scoring (18.5 ppg.), rebounding (11.4 rpg.), assists (47) and field goals (62). He was shooting 61 percent from the field (62-102) and was second in blocks (10) and steals (12).

Turner Earned 3rd POW of 2009-10
 Evan Turner was selected the Big Ten’s co-player of the week Nov. 30, the third conference award in as many weeks for the junior guard from Chicago. Turner recorded Ohio State’s third all-time triple-double in win vs. Lipscomb Nov. 24 with 16 points, 10 rebounds and 11 assists. He shot 71 percent from the field for the week (15-21) and was a perfect 7-7 from the field vs. St. Francis Nov. 28. Averaged 16 points, 9.0 rebounds and 8.0 assists for the week with four blocks and three steals. Turner also became the 44th Buckeye to reach 1,000 points with 16 vs. St. Francis (Pa.) in just 27 minutes vs. the Red Flash.
Turner Nearing Rare Accomplishments
 Only 20 players in Ohio State history have scored more than 1,000 points and collected 500 rebounds. Turner has 1,033 career points and 489 career rebounds at Ohio State. The most recent addition to the list was Terence Dials, who from 2002-06, scored 1,566 points and grabbed 876 rebounds. He was the Big Ten Player of the Year in 2006. Just 26 Ohio State players have recorded 500 or more career rebounds. J.J. Sullinger was the last to join the list in 2006 in his third season in Columbus. He finished his career with 535 career rebounds. Turner could become just the second player in recorded history to reach 1,000 points, 500 rebounds and 300 assists. Jim Jackson is the only other Buckeye to do so with 1,785 career points, 552 career rebounds and 372 career assists from 1990-92. Turner has 276 career assists to date and is averaging 5.9 assists a game this season.

Seven Opponents in Top 25
 Ohio State has seven opponents currently in the Top 25 nationally in the ESPN/USA Today and Associated Press weekly polls. Purdue, West Virginia, Michigan State, North Carolina, Wisconsin, Northwestern and Butler are listed in both polls. California, Illinois and Minnesota are receiving votes in at least one of the polls.

Turner streak a first since ’80-81
 Evan Turner opened the season with five-consecutive double-doubles for the first time since Clark Kellogg did so in 1980-81. Turner reached 10 or more points and rebounds vs. Alcorn State (14/17/10 assts.), James Madison (24-17), North Carolina (23/11), California (26/14) and Lipscomb (16/10/11 assts.). Kellogg began the 1980-81 campaign with double-doubles in five-consecutive games vs. Cleveland State (23/14), at Kentucky (12/13), Colgate (16/17), South Alabama (18/18) and at Arizona State (18/10).
 
Ohio State vs. The Ranked
 The Buckeyes have an all-time record of 131-218 vs. ranked opponents in the Associated Press Top 25. That includes a mark of 54-111 vs. Top 10 foes. The Buckeyes are 2-4 in the last six games vs. Top 10, including an 82-70 victory vs. Michigan State last March in the Big Ten tournament. As a ranked team, Ohio State is 345-101 all-time.

Climbing the Scoring Chart
 Evan Turner has scored 1,033 points over 78 Ohio State games in his career for an average of 13.2 points a game. His 16 points vs. St. Francis (Pa.) Nov. 28 made him the 44th player in Ohio State history to reach 1,000 career points. With 25 points vs. Florida State Dec. 2, Turner moved to No. 41 all-time on the career scoring chart at Ohio State. Jamie Skelton and Ken Johnson are next, tied for No. 39 with 1,055 career points. Two others on the current roster are on pace to reach 1,000 points. Junior David Lighty has 727 career points over 96 career games. Jon Diebler has 768 points (83 games) in his three seasons at Ohio State. William Buford is well on his way as a sophomore as well (537/56 games).

Wins follow Buckeye double-doubles
 Ohio State has had a player record a double-double (10+ points, rebs, assists, steals or blocks) in 794 games. The Buckeyes are 539-255 in those contests (.678). Evan Turner has 17 career double-doubles and the Buckeyes are 11-6 in those contests, including wins in nine of his last 11 games with a D-D. Turner is among the Top 20 players in OSU history with 17 career double-doubles at No. 18, tied with Dennis Hopson (1984-87) and Steven Wenner (1973-75). Terence Dials (2002-06), Bill Andreas (1973-75) and Tony Campbell (1981-84) are tied for No. 15 with 18 career double-doubles. William Buford became the 100th Ohio State player to record a double-double with 16 points and 10 assists in Ohio State’s win vs. Eastern Michigan Dec. 5.

100 Points Equates to Near Perfection
 Ohio State has scored 100 or more points 69 times all-time and has a record of 68-1 in those games. The Buckeyes are 49-0 at home when reaching the century mark, 3-0 on neutral courts and 16-1 on opponent courts. The last win with 100 or more points was a 111-60 victory vs. Eastern Michigan Dec. 5. The only loss for OSU when scoring 100 points was a double-overtime thriller at LSU Jan. 15, 2005. The Buckeyes battled the Tigers but fell 113-101.

Double Digit 3’s
 Ohio State has made 10 or more 3-pointers in a game 63 times since the long-range shot was instituted for the 1986-87 season. The Buckeyes are 53-10 in those games after knocking down 16 of 29 treys against Eastern Michigan Dec. 5. Opponents have made double-digit 3s 82 times and are 33-49 in those games vs. the Buckeyes. Matta’s Ohio State teams are 37-8 when making 10 or more 3s in a game.   

First Four Games part of 2K Classic
 The first four games of the regular-season made up the 2K Sports Classic benefiting Coaches vs. Cancer event on the Ohio State schedule. Alcorn State (Nov. 9) and James Madison (Nov. 12) traveled to Columbus before the Buckeyes played at Madison Square Garden in New York vs defending national champions North Carolina Nov. 19 and California Nov. 20.

Club Tril T-shirts now available
 Mark Titus, senior walk-on from Brownsburg, Ind., has been writing and publishing his blog – clubtrillion.com –  for the last two years on college basketball from an “end-of-the-bench” perspective. Approaching 2,000,000 hits, the blog is somewhat popular in college basketball circles. To take advantage of the interest in the site, Titus has teamed with “A Kid Again,” a local charity for children with life-threatening illnesses, to help support the charity’s efforts. For a $25 donation fans of the blog will receive a Club Tril T-shirt. All the proceeds will then go to support “A Kid Again.” Get your shirt today by placing an order at clubtrillion.com.
 
Buckeyes Picked 3rd in Big Ten Preseason Media poll
 Evan Turner was tabbed a preseason first team All-Big Ten selection by league media at the annual media day in Chicago. Turner is the league’s top returning scorer (17 ppg.). He led the Buckeyes in scoring, rebounding, assists and steals as a sophomore last year. Thad Matta’s Buckeyes were selected No. 3 in the preseason media poll behind Michigan State and Purdue.

Schedule has Buckeyes playing the
nation’s best
 Ohio State will play five of the preseason Top 10 ranked teams (ESPN/coaches poll) in the country this year. Preseason No. 2 Michigan State, No. 4 North Carolina, No. 7 Purdue, No. 9 West Virginia and No. 10 Butler all dot the Ohio State slate in 2009-10. Five Big Ten teams were ranked among the Top 20 with No. 15 Michigan, No. 18 Minnesota, and No. 17 Ohio State all slated among the top teams nationally. Ohio State also faced No. 12 California at the 2K Classic benefiting Coaches vs. Cancer in New York, defeating the Bears 76-70. Illinois was just outside the preseason Top 25 at No. 27.
 
Seven Former Buckeyes In NBA Rosters in 2009-10
 Ohio State leads all Big Ten teams with seven players on current NBA rosters. The Big Ten started the season with 33 players on NBA active lists. Nine Big Ten teams have at least one player competing in the NBA. Michael Redd (Milwaukee Bucks) is the longest-tenured Buckeye in the NBA. Greg Oden (Portland), Michael Conley (Memphis), Daequan Cook (Miami), Othello Hunter (Atlanta), Kosta Koufos (Utah) and B.J. Mullens (Oklahoma) represent Ohio State in the NBA.

Big Ten season starts with Buckeyes on the road
 Four of the first five games of the Big Ten season will be played away from Value City Arena. The Buckeyes opened the league season at Wisconsin Dec. 31 (L, 65-43) before a trip to Michigan Jan. 3. A home game vs. Indiana Jan. 6 splits road games at Minnesota (Jan. 9) and at Purdue Jan. 12. The Buckeyes face a similar stretch of road games at Indiana Feb. 10, at Illinois Feb. 14, home vs. Purdue Feb. 17 and away vs. Michigan State Feb. 20/21 and at Penn State Feb. 24.
  
Matta adds pair to roster
 The Ohio State roster grew by two in late October when Thad Matta added walk-on juniors Eddie Days and Dustin Reynolds. Days is the nephew of Buckeye great Jim Cleamons, a current assistant coach with the Los Angeles Lakers. Reynolds is the younger brother of former Ohio State women’s basketball player DiDi Reynolds. Dustin will sit out the 2009-10 season to satisfy NCAA transfer rules (from Hillsdale College in Michigan). Days started his career vs. Presbyterian College Dec. 16, playing one minute in the victory over the Blue Hose. The Buckeyes now have four walk-on players on the roster. Danny Peters is a fifth-year senior and Mark Titus is in his senior campaign as well. Peters will end his career with five varsity letters, one as a manager (2006) and four as a student-athlete (2007-10).
 
Turner, USA Earn Bronze at World
University Games
 Junior Evan Turner averaged 4.0 points, 3.7 rebounds and led Team USA with 18 assists at the World University Games in Belgrade, Serbia. The United States finished with a 6-1 record at the early-July event with Turner making three starts and averaging 16.3 minutes a game. He connected on 52 percent of his shots (12-23) and 4 of 5 free throws.

Turner Among Candidates for Preseason Honors
 Evan Turner led Ohio State and the Big Ten in scoring last season with an average of 17.3 points a game. He was No. 3 in rebounding as well with 7.1 and was among the Top 10 league players in steals (4th/1.8 spg.) and assists (8th/3.97). He was a finalist for Big Ten Player of the Year honors a season ago and will be among the favorites entering his junior season. His name has also garnered All-America consideration after earning a spot among the Top 15 finalists for the 2009 Oscar Robertson Award, given annually by the United States Basketball Writer’s Association to the player of the year in college basketball.   

Diebler Among Big Ten, Nation’s Top
Shooters
 Jon Diebler, the all-time leading scorer in Ohio High School history, started slow in the college game from behind the arc, where he made a name for himself as a prep at Upper Sandusky High School. After shooting 29 percent from long range as a rookie (48-166), Diebler responded with a breakout sophomore season. He knocked down 96 of 231 treys for 41.6 percent accuracy. That effort was second in the Big Ten for makes and is the second-most single season 3s made in Ohio State history. He already is second all-time at Ohio State in 3s made in a career (187) and his eight 3s made at Northwestern last year rates No. 2 in Ohio State’s record book for 3s made in a game.   

Lauderdale, Madsen, Sarikopoulos
Man the Middle for Buckeyes
 Junior Dallas Lauderdale returns to the paint for Ohio State after sharing time with B.J. Mullens, a 2009 NBA First Round draft pick (24th overall pick) of the Dallas Mavericks. Mullens, later traded to the Oklahoma City Thunder, marks the fifth Buckeye first-round pick under Matta and sixth overall NBA player since taking over in 2004-05.
 Lauderdale continues to improve physically and defensively. He was among the nation’s top shot blockers last season, rejecting 67 shots to finish No. 2 in the Big Ten with an average of 2.03 blocks per game. Madsen is in his third season with the Buckeyes and has earned his Ohio State degree. His experience with Thad Matta’s system, ability to score and provide quality defensive minutes will earn playing time. He started three games this year while Lauderdale recovered from a right hand injury early in the season.
 Sarikopoulos, a transfer from UAB who sat out the 2008-09 season at Ohio State to satisfy NCAA transfer rules, becomes eligible this season. He adds size (7-0, 265), rebounding and post-passing skills to the Ohio State big man rotation.
 Sarikopoulos played sparingly during the U19 World Championships for his native Greece. A left-knee sprain hampered his playing time during the event. He averaged 1.3 points and 0.7 rebounds as the United States defeated Greece 88-80 to claim  gold. The event was held in Auckland, New Zealand in early July.

Where to Point? 
 The point guard position rotated between Jeremie Simmons and P.J. Hill a season ago with Simmons starting the first 25 games and Hill the final eight. Simmons moved over to provide minutes at the No. 2 guard spot, his natural position, down the stretch. Evan Turner saw the majority of the time directing traffic this year before injuring his back against Eastern Michigan Dec. 5. He handed out 97 assists last season to lead the Buckeyes in that category while also recording 58 thefts at the defensive end.  

A Summer in Canada
 With nearly the entire roster returning from the 2008-09 season, Matta and the Buckeyes took a preseason international trip to Canada. The excursion allowed the Buckeyes 10 practices and a few competitions before the official start of practice Oct. 16. The Buckeyes played three games between Aug. 27-31 in Canada vs. teams from the Windsor area. Ohio State last left the country for competition during the summer of 2001 when the squad traveled to Italy, Switzerland, France and the Netherlands.

New York, Morgantown,
Indianapolis also on Travel List
 After traveling to New York for a pair of games in the 2009 Coaches vs. Cancer Classic, Ohio State  has two more trips for non-conference games remaining on its schedule. The Buckeyes complete a home-and-home series with West Virginia in January and the final game of the four-game home-and-home series vs. Butler will take place at Hinkle Fieldhouse on the Bulldog campus in December. The 18-game Big Ten schedule features home-and-home matchups with eight teams and single matchups vs. Northwestern (home) and Michigan State (away).

Can You Spot Matta a 20?
 For each of the last nine seasons, all as a head coach, Thad Matta has guided teams to at least 20 victories. Only Mark Few, among active coaches, has more consecutive 20-win seasons to start a career (10). Matta set the Ohio State record for consecutive 20-win campaigns last year with a 22-11 record, the fifth-consecutive Ohio State season with 20+ victories. The previous record was four held by the 1960-63 teams under legendary head coach Fred Taylor.
 Matta also has won at least 10 Big Ten regular-season games in each of the last four seasons. A fifth double-digit effort in the win column in 2010 would tie Taylor’s mark of 10+ league wins in each of the seasons from 1960-64. Those were during 14-game regular-season slates. The Big Ten played a 16-game schedule in Matta’s first three seasons (8, 12, 15 league wins) and an 18-game schedule the last two (10, 10).

Speaking of Consistent #s…
 Ohio State was again one of the top draws in college basketball in 2008-09. The Buckeyes drew nearly 280,000 fans to home games last season to rate No. 14 nationally in home attendance. The Buckeyes have been among the Top 20 in home attendance in each of the last 11 years, all while playing at the Jerome Schottenstein Center (19,049). Ohio State games both home and on the road drew 477,000 fans last year, No. 16 nationally. The Buckeyes have been a Top 20 draw nationally in 10 of the last 11 years and led the nation in all-game attendance in 2007. The Big Ten led the nation in attendance for the 33rd-consecutive season in 2008-09. An average of 12,519 fans attended 193 Big Ten games a season ago. 

Boals Joins Staff
 Matta added Jeff Boals to the staff after the departure of assistant coach Archie Miller, who left to coach alongside his brother Sean, the new University of Arizona head coach. Boals, a 1995 graduate of Ohio University, left Akron to join the Buckeyes. His tenacity as a player with the Bobcats is expected to transfer to the Ohio State roster, especially the post players.