January 25, 2020

Buckeyes and Wildcats Set to Meet Sunday Night in Evanston


Ohio State Men's Basketball GamedayMarch 12, 2020
Opponentvs. Purdue (16-15)
SiteBankers Life Fieldhouse (18,500)
Time6:30 p.m. ET
TelevisionBTN | BTN Plus
TalentKevin Kugler (Play-By-Play)
Stephen Bardo (Expert Analysis)
Rick Pizzo (Sideline)
RadioOSU-IMG Sports Network (67 stations)
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Local RadioWBNS-FM 97.1
Satellite RadioSirius (84) / XM (84)
Radio TalentPaul Keels (Play-By-Play)
Ron Stokes (Expert Analysis)
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Starting Five

  • The Buckeyes are 1,158-418 all-time when playing in the state of Ohio (.735) … against Ohio teams, Ohio State is 237-79 (.749) all-time, regardless of location. The Buckeyes faced a pair of intrastate foes this season. Ohio State defeated Cincinnati Nov. 6 at Value City Arena (64-56) and then Kent State Nov. 25 at St. John Arena (W, 72-51). Ohio State is 179-30 vs. Ohio teams in Columbus (.856). In the state of Illinois, Ohio State is 106-111 (.488) all-time. The Buckeyes last won in the Land of Lincoln during the 2018-19 season when Ohio State posted a 3-2 record in Illinois. Indiana fell 79-75 at the United Center in Chicago March 14, 2019 in Big Ten Tournament play for the Buckeyes’ latest win in Illinois. Ohio State also defeated Illinois (77-67, Dec. 5, 2018) and UCLA (80-66, Dec. 22, 2018) at the United Center during the 2018-19 season.
  • Three current Buckeyes were named Mr. Basketball in their respective states. Junior Kaleb Wesson was named Ohio Mr. Basketball as a senior at Westerville South High School … freshman D.J. Carton was named Mr. Basketball in Iowa in 2019 as a senior at Bettendorf High School and freshman E.J. Liddell was named Illinois Mr. Basketball in both 2018 and 2019 after leading Belleville High School to back-to-back state titles.
  • Andre and Kaleb Wesson are one of 16 sets of brothers playing in NCAA Division I this season and one of two sets in the Big Ten (Iowa, McCaffery) also have siblings on the roster.
  • Ohio State has 58 players all-time with 1,000 or more career points, the ninth-most nationally and the most of any Big Ten school (research credit: Duke). Kaleb Wesson is the most recent Buckeye to reach the milestone with 1,072 career points over his career. He became the 37th Ohio State player all-time to reach 500 rebounds with nine vs. West Virginia Dec. 29. His 22 points vs. Wisconsin Jan. 3 put him over the 1,000-point mark.
  • Ohio State will play before at least five sold out crowds at Value City Arena in 2020. The Wisconsin (19,049, Jan. 3), Indiana (Feb. 1), Purdue (Feb. 15), Maryland (Feb. 23) and Michigan (March 1) games are sellouts. There is limited availability for Rutgers (Feb. 12) and Illinois (March 5).

Off the Bench

  • Ohio State is 61-19 all-time when games are sold out at Value City Arena. Ohio State is 53-16 in sold out games against the Big Ten, including a 20-11 record against ranked conference opponents. The last sellout at VCA was vs. Wisconsin Jan. 3, 2020 (L, 61-57).
  • Ohio State is 1,700-1,100 all-time after a 12-6 start this season.
  • In the first NCAA NET rankings of the year, released Dec. 16, Ohio State was rated the No. 1 team nationally after its 9-1 start. The Buckeyes were ranked No. 1 in the first NET rankings a year ago as well. This year Ohio State has played eight Quad 1 games (2-6) with a total of 10 Quad 1 (6) and Quad 2 (4) games remaining on the schedule.
  • When the then-No. 5 Buckeyes tipped vs. the No. 6 Kentucky Wildcats Dec. 21 in Las Vegas, the Wesson family reached 300 games played as Buckeyes. Keith Wesson, who lettered for Ohio State from 1983-87, played in 115 games. Senior Andre Wesson has appeared in 115 games while junior Kaleb Wesson has taken the court as a Buckeye 84 times. In 314 games played, the Wessons have scored 2,042 points for an average of 6.5 a game.
  • In three seasons as Ohio State head coach, Chris Holtmann teams have made 10 or more 3s 21 times (15-6 rcd.). Ohio State made 10+ from distance five times in 2017-18 and posted a 4-1 record in those games. The Buckeyes were 5-5 in 2018-19 and are 6-0 this year when make 10+ 3-pointers.
  • The Buckeyes have made 30 or more field goals seven times this year (7-0) after doing so three times a season ago (3-0). Chris Holtmann Ohio State teams have scored 30 or more FGs in 22 games during his tenure (21-1) after doing so 12 times in his first year (12-1). Ohio State has won its last nine games when reaching at least 30 FGs made.

Kaleb Wesson Welcomed to Exclusive Club
Ohio State junior Kaleb Wesson has entered both the 1,000 career point and 500 career rebound club with 1,072 points and 566 boards. Wesson became the 29th Buckeye all-time with both 1,000 points and 500 rebounds in a career.

The Ohio State vs. Northwestern Series
Ohio State leads the all-time series with the Wildcats 119-47. Ohio State owns a 69-15 record in Columbus and is 49-32 in Evanston. The teams have played on a neutral court once with the Buckeyes owning the win. Andre Wesson has faced Northwestern four times over his career, most of any current Buckeye. He averages 3.8 points and 2.3 rebounds in the series. Younger brother Kaleb Wesson averages 15.0 points and 7.0 boards in two meetings. Duane Washington Jr. scored 19 points in two appearances in the series a season ago.

Scouting Northwestern
Northwestern enters the game with the Buckeyes at 6-12 overall and 1-7 in the Big Ten. The Wildcats are 1-8 after starting the season with a 5-4 record. The most recent Northwestern win was at home vs. Nebraska, 62-57, Jan. 11. Three Wildcats average in double figures on the offensive end. Miller Kopp (13.3 ppg.), a sophomore forward, Pat Spencer (11.0 ppg.), a grad transfer guard and Boo Buie (10.2 ppg.), a freshman guard.

Ohio State vs. The Big Ten
The Buckeyes own an overall record of 828-736 against current league members. Chris Holtmann faced six league opponents during his six years as a head coach prior to taking over for the Buckeyes in 2017-18. He entered his first year of Big Ten competition with a 4-5 record vs. conference foes. He is 30-30 vs. conference opponents in nine years as a head coach.