Dec. 6, 2013

Aaron Craft is one of five Buckeyes averaging more than 10 points over the last two games.

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No. 5 Ohio State Buckeyes (7-0) vs. Central Connecticut State Blue Devils (2-5)

Date: Dec. 7, 2013
Site: Value City Arena (19,049)
Game Time: 4:30 p.m. ET
Television: BTN
Talent: Tom Hamilton (play-by-play)
Jim Jackson (expert analysis)
Radio: OSU-IMG Sports Network (56 stations)
Satellite Radio: Sirius 135/XM 193
Local Radio: WBNS FM-97.1 AM-1460
Radio Talent: Herb Howenstine (play-by-play)
Ron Stokes (expert analysis)

The Central Connecticut Series
Ohio State and the Blue Devils have met twice previously with Ohio State winning a home game Nov. 11, 1995, 79-72, and a neutral site game in Lexington, Ky., in the first round of the 2007 NCAA Tournament. The No. 1 Buckeyes defeated the Blue Devils, 78-57, in that game before eventually playing for the 2007 National Championship against Florida.

The Last Time vs. Central Connecticut
Greg Oden finished with 19 points and 10 rebounds for his 12th double-double of the season as the Buckeyes won their 18th-consecutive game in the First Round of the 2007 NCAA Tournament against Central Connecticut State. Jamar Butler scored 17 points and Ron Lewis added 13 for the Buckeyes. Ohio State needed less than 5 minutes to build a double-digit lead and kept the pressure on well into the second half. Javier Mojica led Central Connecticut with 19 points. With the Blue Devils double-and triple-teaming Oden, Butler and Lewis had plenty of wide-open looks from the outside and took full advantage. Five of Ohio State’s first six field goals were 3-pointers, and by the time the Blue Devils caught their breath, they were down 17-3.

A Look at the Blue Devils
Central Connecticut lost its first four games of the season to Yale, Purdue, Northeastern and Rider before earning a 74-71 win at New Jersey Institute of Technology Nov. 26. The Blue Devils then fell at Brown and won at home vs. New Hampshire last Tuesday to enter the Ohio State game with a 2-5 record. A pair of Blue Devils average in double figures with junior guard Kyle Vinales leading the way with 19.3 points a game. He is followed by junior forward Faronte Drakeford with 10.9 ppg. Senior guard Matt Hunter leads the squad with 6.3 rebounds a contest with Drakeford contributing 6.1 rpg.

Ohio State vs. The Northeast Conference
Ohio State is 8-0 all-time vs. teams currently representing the Northeast Conference. The Buckeyes are 3-0 against Robert Morris, 2-0 vs. CCSU and have single wins vs. LIU-Brooklyn, Mount Saint Mary`s and St. Francis (Pa.). The Buckeyes have never faced Bryant, Fairleigh Dickinson, Sacred Heart, St. Francis (N.Y.) or Wagner. The Buckeyes are scheduled to host Bryant Dec. 11 in the first game of the 2013 Gotham Classic at Value City Arena.

Craft a Nominee for 2014 Good Works Team
The National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) and Allstate Insurance Company announced the 202 nominees for the 2014 Allstate NABC and WBCA Good Works Teams® Dec. 3. The award recognizes a select group of college basketball student-athletes who have made significant contributions to the greater good of their communities through volunteerism and civic service. In its second year, the Allstate NABC and WBCA Good Works Teams® honor players at all levels of college basketball who represent the sport’s finest in the areas of leadership and charitable achievements amongst their peers. The student-athletes nominated for this prestigious award embody the true spirit of teamwork and giving back. The 2014 Allstate NABC Good Works Teams (two five-man teams) will be announced in February 2014, selected from the list of nominees.

Noting the Maryland Game

  • Ohio State is 4-2 all-time vs. Maryland and 66-42 vs. current members of the Atlantic Coast Conference.
  • Ohio State is 6-6 all-time in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge; the Buckeyes are 5-1 in their last six challenge contests.
  • During pregame, the Big Ten Conference recognized former Ohio State and Maryland head coach Gary Williams.
  • Ohio State went on an 18-7 run spanning 8:04 in the first half of play. During the run, the Buckeyes developed a 27-16 lead over the Terrapins.
  • Four players scored in double figures for Ohio State: LaQuinton Ross (20 points), Sam Thompson (14), Lenzelle Smith Jr. (12) and Aaron Craft (10).
  • Ohio State has won 73-consecutive home games against unranked opponents, 46 consecutive against unranked non-conference opponents. The last loss was Dec. 27, 2008 vs. West Virginia.
  • Ohio State is 104-6 all-time vs. non-conference opponents at Value City Arena.
  • As a ranked team, No. 5 Ohio State is 462-124 all-time. The Buckeyes are 328-73 when ranked in the AP Top 10.
  • The Buckeye bench has outscored opposing benches 155-67 this season. The Buckeyes recorded 26 bench points, compared to 17 from Maryland.
  • Ohio State held a 25-8 advantage in points off turnovers. The Terps turned the ball over 14 times.
  • Ohio State held Maryland to 2-of-18 shooting from 3-point range, a season low in made 3 pointers and 3-point percentage for the Terrapins (11 percent). Opponents are shooting 22.4 percent (26-116) from 3 against OSU this season.
  • OSU guards Shannon Scott and Aaron Craft combined for 11 assists and only four turnovers for the game.
  • Thad Matta is 257-73 during his career at Ohio State and 359-104 overall as a head coach.
  • Against unranked opponents, Matta owns a 211-22 record as Ohio State head coach. Matta is 139-2 against unranked opponents at home.
  • Matta owns a 159-14 home record as head coach of the Buckeyes.
  • Matta is 56-9 in the month of December as OSU head coach.
  • Aaron Craft ranks 47th all-time at Ohio State with 1,050 career points. He needs six points to pass Ken Johnson and Jamie Skelton for 46th.
  • Craft collected five steals against the Terps. With 268 career steals, Craft remains sixth all-time in Big Ten history. He needs five to pass Pat Baldwin of Northwestern (272) for fifth.
  • Craft has 12 career games with five or more steals.
  • Craft had six assists against Maryland. He ranks second on the all-time list at Ohio State with 568. He needs 12 assists to pass Jamar Butler (579) for first.
  • Lenzelle Smith Jr. scored 12 points vs. Maryland, surpassing 700 career points as a Buckeye (709).
  • LaQuinton Ross led all scorers with 20 points.
  • Ross tied a career high with four 3-point field goals.

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