Feb. 27, 2013

No. 16 Ohio State Buckeyes (20-7, 10-5) at the Northwestern Wildcats (13-15, 4-11)

Date: Feb. 28, 2013
Site: Welsh-Ryan Arena (8,367)
Game Time: 7:01 p.m. ET
Television: ESPN2
Talent: Joe Tessitore (play-by-play)
Sean Farnham (expert analysis)
Online Stream:
Radio: OSU-IMG Sports Network (56 stations)
Satellite Radio: Sirius 91/XM 91
Local Radio: WBNS FM-97.1 AM-1460
Radio Talent: Paul Keels (play-by-play)
Ron Stokes (expert analysis)
Ohio State Notes | Northwestern Notes | Big Ten Stats
Ohio State Men’s Basketball
Men’s Basketball Jeff Boals Greg Paulus Dan Wallenberg Alissa Clendenen
@OhioStateHoops @JeffBoals @Greg_Paulus @OSUADAthComm @AlissaC_OSU
Press Conference w/ Coach Matta | Press Conference w/ Thompson and Della Valle
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Thomas Named Naismith Awards Midseason 30 list
Deshaun Thomas was named to the Midseason Top 30 list for the Naismith Awards Men’s College Player of the year Feb. 26. The preseason Top 50 watch lists for both the 2013 Wooden Award and the 2013 Naismith Player of the Year included Thomas and Aaron Craft, both juniors on the Ohio State men’s basketball team. Thomas was named to the Midseason Wooden Watch List, containing the Top 25 student athletes at the midway point of the 2012-13 season. The 36th annual Wooden Award ceremony will take place at the men’s Final Four Weekend (April 6-8) in Atlanta. Ohio State has been well represented among finalists for the Wooden Award over the last several years. Greg Oden was a finalist in 2007. Evan Turner was the 2010 Wooden Award winner and Jared Sullinger was a finalist in both 2011 and 2012. The Naismith Men’s College Player of the Year Award will be handed out April 7 in Atlanta as well.

Matta Continues to Build Impressive Ohio State Resume
Thad Matta has accomplished a remarkable list of accomplishments in nine years as head coach of the Buckeyes and the 2012-13 season is no different. Matta’s teams have never failed to win 20 games, a record streak (nine seasons) in Ohio State history. In fact, Matta has never failed to reach the 20-win plateau in 13 years as a head coach. The Buckeyes are 20-7 to date in 2012-13 after the 68-60 home win over No. 4 Michigan State last Sunday. Ohio State has reached 30 or more wins three times, all with Matta at the helm. Back-to-back seasons with 30 wins in 2010-11 (34) and 2011-12 (31) only trail the 35 wins recorded in 2006-07, the Ohio State record for single-season victories. In addition, Matta has won five Big Ten titles, including the last three (2010-12), three Big Ten postseason tournament crowns, in six title game opportunities, six NCAA tournament appearances, including three-consecutive runs to the “Sweet 16,” a pair of Final Four trips (2007, 2011) and a title game appearance in 2007. Throw in a National Invitation Tournament title in 2009 and Matta has guided the Buckeyes to postseason play in seven-consecutive attempts and in ever year in which Ohio State was eligible.

Matta Year by Year

Year Record Big Ten Record/Finish
2004-05 20-12 8-8/6th
2005-06 26-6 12-4/1st
2006-07 35-4 15-1/1st
2007-08 24-13 10-8/5th
2008-09 22-11 10-8/4th-T
2009-10 29-8 14-4/1st-T
2010-11 34-3 16-2/1st
2011-12 31-8 13-5/1st-T
2012-13 20-7 10-5

Craft Earns First Team Academic All-American Honor for Second Time
Aaron Craft was named to the Capital One Academic All-America Team for the second time Feb. 21, becoming Ohio State’s first two-time first team honoree. This season, Craft was named Capital One Academic All-America of the Year in Division I men’s basketball. A nutrition (pre-med) major, Craft has an overall grade-point average of 3.92 while leading Ohio State to a 20-7 overall record. In three seasons at Ohio State, Craft has set the career record for steals (223) and has led the Buckeyes to 83 victories, a pair of Big Ten titles, two appearances in the NCAA tournament “Sweet 16,” and a Final Four appearance. He also is No. 3 in career assists at Ohio State with 477.

Buckeyes Record 10th league Win
Thad Matta and the Buckeyes have won at least 10 Big Ten Conference regular-season games in each of the last eight seasons, a record streak at Ohio State. The Buckeyes head to Northwestern with a 10-5 record in league play during the 2013 conference season. Ohio State has won at least 10 league games 31 times. Matta tied legendary Ohio State coach Fred Taylor, who coached eight teams to 10 or more league victories, with the win over Michigan State Feb. 24. Matta’s nine 20-win seasons overall is an Ohio State record. Taylor led the Buckeyes to six 20+ win campaigns.

Thomas Added to 1,000/500 Club
A total of 25 Ohio State players have scored 1,000 or more points to go with 500 career rebounds. Deshaun Thomas (1,433 career points/504 rebounds) is the latest to join the club after a seven-rebound effort vs. No. 4 Michigan State Feb. 24. Before Thomas, Jared Sullinger was the last to reach the milestone with 1,282 career points and 717 career rebounds. Thad Matta has coached six of the players on the all-time list. William Buford (1,990/666), Terence Dials (1,566/876), Evan Turner (1,517/683), David Lighty (1,458/577), Sullinger and now Thomas have been added to the list during Matta’s tenure.

Thomas Reaches 500 Points a 2nd Time
Thirty Ohio State players have reached the 500-point mark in a single season at least once. Deshaun Thomas became the 14th player to do so multiple times with 18 points at Wisconsin Feb. 17. Thomas scored 619 points as a sophomore, the 17th best single-season scoring effort in Ohio State history. Thomas leads the Big Ten in scoring with 19.9 points per game for a total of 536 points this season. William Buford (2009-12), one of three Buckeyes to score 500+ three times, and Jared Sullinger (2011-12), who did it twice, were the last to record multiple 500-point seasons at Ohio State.

The Northwestern Series
Overall, Ohio State is 112-45 vs. Northwestern. and has won 18 of the last 19 overall meetings, including the last seven. The Buckeyes are 45-31 in Evanston and have won seven of the last eight. Ohio State teams are 35-2 vs. the Wildcats with wins in 24 of the last 25 games while ranked in the Associated Press poll. Deshaun Thomas leads Ohio State with 11.8 points per game in the Northwestern series in five career meetings. Aaron Craft is shooting 58 percent vs. the Wildcats (19-33) and 50 percent from distance (7-14) for an average of 10.6 ppg. Lenzelle Smith Jr. is next with 9.3 ppg. Amir Williams averages 7.0 rebounds to lead Ohio State in the series.

A Look at the Wildcats
No. 16 Ohio State travels to Evanston to face Northwestern Thursday. The Wildcats are 13-15 overall with a 4-11 slate in Big Ten regular season play. The Wildcats have lost seven of the last eight games. The win during that stretch was at home vs. Purdue (75-60). Northwestern is 8-9 at home this year. Reggie Hearn leads the team with 13.7 ppg. Drew Crawford, out for the season with injury, contributed 13.5 points a game over the first 10 games of the season. Dave Sobolewski adds 10.2 points a game.

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