Jan. 3, 2005

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Date Jan. 5, 2005
Opponent No. 1 Illinois (14-0, 0-0)
Site Assembly Hall (16,500)
Game Time 9 p.m.
Local TV WBNS 10 TV (Ch. 10)
TV Talent Mike Gleason, Play-by-Play, Doug Altenberger, Expert Analysis
Radio OSU Radio Network (59 stations)
Local Radio WBNS FM-97.1 AM-1460
Radio Talent Paul Keels (P-by-P), Ron Stokes (Color)

Buckeyes Open 93rd Season in Big Ten Conference
This is the 93rd season of Big Ten membership in men’s basketball for the Buckeyes. Ohio State is 51-41 (.554) in conference openers, 62-30 (.674) in league home openers and 35-57 (.380) in the first road game of the season in Big Ten play. Ohio State has opened Big Ten play on the road 40 times and has a 17-23 record in those games.

Ohio State vs. No. 1 Ranked Foes
Ohio State has a 6-8 record against teams ranked No. 1 in the Associated Press men’s basketball poll. Ohio State has not faced the No. 1 team in the country since the 1993 Big Ten season when the Buckeyes downed No. 1 Indiana 81-77 in overtime on Feb. 23. That game was played in Columbus. The last time Ohio State played a No. 1 team on the road was at Iowa Jan. 24, 1987. The Buckeyes won that game 80-76. Ohio State has won its last four games against No. 1-ranked teams. The Buckeyes have been unranked in each of those wins. Overall, Ohio State is 129-209 all-time against ranked opponents and 54-105 against Top 10 teams.

Dials Posts 3rd-Consecutive Double-Double in Win vs. St. Joseph’s
Junior center Terence Dials scored a game-high 24 points while grabbing 10 rebounds, also a game-best effort, in Ohio State’s 72-61 victory over St. Joseph’s last Friday in Columbus. It was the first time since 1986 that a Buckeye player recorded three-consecutive games with 10 or more points and rebounds. Dennis Hopson was the last to accomplish the feat for Ohio State. The Buckeyes owned a 10-point lead at the half (36-26). The Hawks chipped away but Ohio State never relinquished the lead to record the 11th victory of the season for the Buckeyes. Ivan Harris scored 13 points and freshman Jamar Butler scored a career-high 10 points for Ohio State. Chet Stachitas led SJU with 16 points with Pat Carroll adding 14. Dials has reached 20 or more points in each of his last four outings and in five of the last six games for Ohio State. He has four double-doubles this season and seven for his career. The last time an Ohio State player put together a streak of four or more consecutive double-doubles was during the 1985-86 season when Brad Sellers had a streak of nine-consecutive games with 10 or more points and rebounds.

Dials Earns Back-to-Back Big Ten Player of the Week Accolades
Ohio State junior Terence Dials led the Buckeyes past Mercer 102-77 by netting a career-high 29 points to go with 13 rebounds to earn his second-consecutive Big Ten Player of the Week accolade Dec. 27. He made 12 field goals, a career best, on 15 attempts (.800) from the field, while also hitting 5-of-7 free throws. Dials posted his second double-double in three games and fifth of his career, while also reaching double figures for the eighth time this season. He is now tied for the team lead in scoring (14.9 ppg.) while ranking 10th in the Big Ten Conference. Dials also ranks third in the league with a career-high 7.8 rebounds per game. The Youngstown native becomes the first conference player to earn back-to-back weekly honors since Wisconsin’s Kirk Penney, who was named player of the week on Dec. 24, 2001 and Dec. 31, 2001. He is the first Buckeye to earn consecutive honors since Scoonie Penn in 1999 (2/15, 2/22).

Buckeye Start Best Since 2001-02
The 11-2 start to the 2004-05 season is the best since Ohio State began the 2001-02 campaign 15-2. Ohio State plays its next game at No. 1-ranked Illini in the Big Ten Conference opener Jan. 5.

Ohio State Wins No. 1,400 in Program History
In 106 years of basketball since 1898, the men’s basketball program at Ohio State has an overall record of 1,402-976 after the 11-2 start to the 2004-05 season.

Ohio State to Retire Havlicek’s No. 5 Feb. 27 vs. Wisconsin
John Havlicek, who lettered from 1960-62 for the Ohio State men’s basketball team and later starred for the NBA’s Boston Celtics, will be back on campus Feb. 27, 2005 to celebrate the retirement of his No. 5 jersey. Havlicek helped the Buckeyes to three-consecutive trips to the NCAA Final Four and three national championship games during his career. The Buckeyes won the 1960 NCAA title and were runners-up in 1961 and 1962. As a Buckeye, Havlicek scored 1,223 points (14.6 ppg.) and grabbed 720 rebounds (8.6 rpg). He ranks 25th all-time in career scoring at Ohio State and is one of just 41 players all-time to score more than 1,000 points. The Buckeyes were 78-6 during his career. He was a two-time All-Big Ten selection and a first-team All-American as a senior in 1962. A member of the Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Mass., Havlicek made nearly 51 percent of his shots from the field and 73 percent of his free throws. As a senior, he averaged 17.0 points and almost 10 rebounds a game. Havlicek is the fourth Ohio State men’s basketball player to have his number retired. He joins No. 11 Jerry Lucas (Feb. 23, 2000), No. 35 Gary Bradds (Jan. 27, 2001) and No. 22 Jim Jackson (Feb. 10, 2001).

Illinois Opens Season Perfect
Deron Williams scored 18 points to lead Illinois over Cincinnati last Friday to give the Illini a 14-0 record prior to the start of the Big Ten Conference season. The No. 1-ranked Illini are 7-0 at home, including a thrashing of then No. 1 Wake Forest (91-73) Dec. 1 in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge. Four players average double figures offensively led by Luther Head (16.2 ppg.), Williams (14.6), Dee Brown (13.3) and Roger Powell, Jr. (13.1). James Augustine is the team’s leading rebounder with 7.1 per game.

Weber Directing 2nd Illini Squad
Bruce Weber is in his second season in Champaign following a 5-year run as the Southern Illinois University head coach. In two years at Illinois, Weber has a 40-7 record. His career record is 143-61.

Ohio State on 3-Game Win Streak in Jan. 5 Competitions
Ohio State is 12-8 all-time in games played on Jan. 5. The Buckeyes have won their last three opportunities on this date, twice winning on the road. Ohio State is 5-1 in the last six Jan. 5 games since 1978 with the lone defeat coming at Michigan in 1985.

1/5/00 W Circleville, 16-8 1/5/01 L Yale, 5-26 1/5/13 W @Westinghouse, 23-16 1/5/29 L @Iowa, 26-34 1/5/32 W @Illinois, 29-28 1/5/35 L @Iowa, 21-32 1/5/46 W Purdue, 57-50 1/5/48 L Iowa, 41-49 1/5/52 L @Northwestern, 70-75 1/5/53 W @Michigan, 79-46 1/5/57 W @Iowa, 72-66 1/5/63 W Minnesota, 78(5)-76 1/5/74 L Illinois, 73-75 1/5/76 L @Wisconsin, (ot) 81-82 1/5/78 W Wisconsin, 77-61 1/5/80 W Purdue, 67(5)-58(8) 1/5/85 L @Michigan, 82-87(16) 1/5/91 W @Michigan, 67(6)-57 1/5/93 W @Penn State, 71-68 1/5/02 W Iowa, 72-62 (9)

Stockman Leads OSU vs. Illinois
Senior Tony Stockman is the leading scorer for the Buckeyes in games against the Illini. In two games a year ago, he averaged 11.5 points 8 of 18 shooting from the field and 4 of 9 attempts from 3-point range. Junior Terence Dials has played four games against Illinois with an average of 9.3 points and 5.3 rebounds. He has connected on 60 percent of his shots from the field (12-20) and 13 of 17 foul shots (.765) vs. Illinois.

The Illinois Series
Illinois and Ohio State have met 158 times since the series began in 1915. The Illini lead 99-59 and have won each of the last four meetings. Ohio State has faced Illinois 43 times with the Illini ranked in the Associated Press Top 25. The Buckeyes are 10-33 in those games. Ohio State last won in Champaign during the 1999 Big Ten season, a 64-61 Buckeye victory.

Ohio State vs. the Big Ten
Ohio State is playing its 93rd season of Big Ten men’s basketball. The Buckeyes joined the league in 1913 and have won or shared 17 Big Ten titles, its most recent coming during the 2002 campaign.

Ohio State vs. The Big Ten Illinois 59-99 Indiana 69-97 Iowa 65-71 Michigan 82-70 Michigan State 46-57 Minnesota 74-51 Northwestern 104-44 Penn State 15-13 Purdue 72-78 Wisconsin 80-58 Totals 666-628

Matta Coaching 1st Big Ten Game
First-year Buckeye head coach Thad Matta, a native of Hoopeston, Ill., is coaching in his first Big Ten Conference game against the Illini. He has not coached against Illinois previously but has competed against Wisconsin (2-0), Purdue (1-1) and Indiana (0-1) during his years at Butler and Xavier.

Buckeyes Setting 3-point Records
Ohio State set the school record with 17 made and 35 attempted 3-point field goals against Chattanooga Nov. 27. In the next game against Clemson (Dec. 1), the Buckeyes knocked down 15 of 25 3-pointers. The 15 made vs. the Tigers is the second most on record while the 25 attempts is tied for ninth all-time. The Buckeyes connected on 11 of 27 3-pointers at home against Morehead State (12/19/04) and then hit 10 of 29 threes vs. New Hampshire (12/28/04) marking the third and fourth times this season the team combined for 10 or more made treys in a game. The 27 attempts vs. the Eagles ranks No. 5 all time for tries in a single game while the 29 attempted vs. UNH is the third most in history. The 8.9 made 3-pointers a game leads the league. Two of Ohio State’s players rate among the Top 9 Big Ten players in 3-point shooting percentage. Je’Kel Foster is No. 6 (.450/27-60) and Ivan Harris is No. 8 (.444/20-45). Tony Stockman is third in 3-pointers made per game with an average of 2.77 per contest.

Noting the St. Joseph’s Game

After a 39-year hiatus of playing games on New Year’s Eve, theBuckeyes improved their Dec. 31 record to 14-4 with the win vs.Saint Joseph’s. Ohio State last played on Dec. 31 against WestTexas – a 78-54 win – during the 1965-66 season. Ohio State is 4-0all-time against Saint Joseph’s and the game marked the firstmeeting between the two schools not in a tournament setting. TheBuckeyes are 19-7 against schools from the Atlantic 10 Conference.Head coach Thad Matta is 4-1 all-time against the Hawks, includinga 3-1 record while the head coach at Xavier. Ohio State is 85-20all-time in Value City Arena and 9-0 at home this season, includingan 8-0 record at VCA. The Buckeyes won a game earlier this seasonat St. John Arena vs. Chattanooga. The Buckeyes are 11-1 whenscoring 70 or more points. Ohio State finished the first half on a14-5 run in the final 3:47 to take a 36-26 halftime lead. TheBuckeyes have led at halftime in all 13 contests this season.Senior Terence Dials tallied his third-consecutive double-doubleand his fourth of the season with 24 points and 10 rebounds versusthe Hawks. Dials also had 24 points and 14 boards Dec. 28 againstNew Hampshire and 29 scores and 13 caroms Dec. 22 against Mercer,both Buckeye wins. The last Ohio State player to recordthree-consecutive double-doubles was Dennis Hopson during the1986-87 season. Hopson had 32 points and 10 caroms against Howardon Dec. 13, 41 points and 14 boards at Dayton Dec. 16 and 24 scoresand 13 rebounds at Jacksonville Dec. 19. The Buckeyes beat Howardand Jacksonville but fell to the Flyers that season. Dials’ 24points marked the sixth time this season he has surpassed the20-point total, including the last four games in a row and five ofthe last six. It also marked the eighth 20-point game of hiscareer. Dials now has seven career double-doubles. Freshman guardJamar Butler recorded a career-high 10 points against the Hawks.His previous career best was seven against Texas Tech Dec. 12.Junior guard Je’Kel Foster has connected on at least one 3-pointfield goal in 12-of-13 games this season. Senior guard TonyStockman made one 3-pointer against St. Joseph’s to move into a tiefor ninth with 109 career treys on Ohio State’s all-time career3-point field goals list. Stockman is tied with former BuckeyeJamal Brown (1989-92) and needs three more 3-pointers to move intoa tie for eighth place.

Buckeyes Fare Well from Field
As a team, Ohio State is scoring on 49 percent of its shots taken from the field this year. Four of the top five scorers are making better than 46 percent of their shots after 13 games. J.J. Sullinger leads the starters, making 63 percent of his shots (55-88). He is followed by Terence Dials (.609/81-133), Ivan Harris (.504/51-101) and Je’Kel Foster (.462/36-78). Tony Stockman (.439/69-157) is second on the scoring list (13.9 ppg.).

Harris, Sullinger Pace Buckeyes in Guardians Event
Ivan Harris led three players in double figures in the two games played in Kansas City in the Guardians Classic. Harris averaged 15.0 points followed by Tony Stockman (13.5 ppg.) and J.J. Sullinger (11.5 ppg.). Terence Dials grabbed 9.5 rebounds during the semifinals and finals. In the four games played in the Guardians Classic, Sullinger was the top scorer with 12.5 points a game. Dials was second with 12.3 ppg. followed by Stockman (11.5) and Harris (10.0). Dials averaged 7.3 rebounds in the four games.

Buckeyes in the Big Ten
Brandon Fuss-Cheatham’s 2.9/1 assist to turnover ratio (50/17) rates third among all Big Ten players. Fuss-Cheatham averages 3.8 assists a game and just 1.3 turnovers a contest. As a team, the Buckeyes have a +3.85 turnover margin over opponents (12.4-16.2), good for the No. 2 spot in the league, behind Illinois. The team’s assist to turnover ratio (+1.39) is second among league schools, also behind Illinois. The Buckeyes are No. 1 in field goal percentage defense (.392) and 3-pointers made (8.9 pg.), No. 2 in 3-point field goal percentage defense (.314) and No. 4 in 3-point field goal shooting (.410). Overall, Ohio State is No. 4 in shooting percentage (.493) and No. 3 in scoring defense (61.2 ppg.) and in scoring margin (+16.4 ppg.). J.J. Sullinger is fourth in field goal percentage (.625). Terence Dials is No. 2 in rebounding (8.5 rpg.) and No. 6 in FG pct. (.609). Tony Stockman is seventh with 1.9 steals a game.

Newcomers, Buckeyes Value the Ball
The four first-year Buckeyes on the 2004-05 roster have just 22 turnovers. Freshmen Jamar Butler (231 minutes), Matt Terwilliger (68) and Jermyl Jackson-Wilson (24) have played a combined 323 minutes with 12 total turnovers. Je’Kel Foster, a junior college transfer, has played 285 minutes with 10 miscues. The newcomers average just one turnover for every 27.6 minutes played. Senior Brandon Fuss-Cheatham leads the Buckeyes with 50 assists with 17 turnovers on the year.

Matta Era Underway
The 13th head coach in Ohio State history, Thad Matta took over the Ohio State men’s basketball program July 7. The new staff begins with a roster of 13 players for the 2004-05 campaign, nine of which are returning letterwinners from a 14-16 squad in 2003-04. That Buckeyes team finished ninth in the Big Ten with a 6-10 league mark and a first round exit in the Big Ten tournament.

Noting the Buckeyes
Junior J.J. Sullinger has connected on 63 percent of his shots from the field (55-88) in 13 games this season. He has scored in double figures in eight of the 13 games. He trails Terence Dials (8.3 rpg.) for the team rebounding lead with 5.1 rpg. Sullinger’s six blocks also trail Dials (7) for the team lead. Sullinger has upped his career scoring average to 10.0 points a game with 720 career points in 72 career games. Against Chattanooga Nov. 27, Sullinger tied a career high with four made 3-pointers in five attempts. He is making 63 percent of his long range shots this season (10-16). Sullinger has at least one assist and in 12 games this year and at least one steal in 11 outings. He has 10 assists in the last three games. In two seasons in Columbus, Sullinger has scored 447 points with 203 rebounds.

Senior Brandon Fuss-Cheatham owns the team lead with 50 assists against just 17 turnovers from the point guard position. His assist to turnover ratio of 2.9/1 is the best of his career and rates No. 3 in the Big Ten. In 299 minutes, he has averaged one turnover in 17.6 minutes played. He is playing 23.0 minutes a contest to date. He set a career high with four made 3-pointers at Clemson while scoring a season-high 14 points against the Tigers. He reached 300 career points (310) as a Buckeye with five vs. Mercer (12/22).

Sophomore Ivan Harris has started 13 games this year after making two all of his freshman season. He scored a career high 19 points in the semifinals of the Guardians Classic against Houston and then added 11 points in the overtime loss to Creighton, earning him a spot on the all-tournament team alongside teammate J.J. Sullinger. Harris is connecting on 51 percent of his shots (51-101) from the field as a sophomore. He scored five 3-pointers in seven attempts against Chattanooga and then made 5 of 9 treys at Clemson. He made all five attempts in the second half from long range vs. Chattanooga and 4 of 7 in the final 20 minutes at Clemson. He has reached 10 or more points eight times in his career. He has 98 rebounds as a Buckeye.

Senior Tony Stockman averages 13.9 points a game this season in 28.8 minutes a game. He tallied 13.6 points a game a year ago in 33.5 minutes a contest. Against Delaware (11/19) he scored 26 points, his career-high effort as a Buckeye. He also knocked down six 3-pointers against the Blue Hens. Stockman has connected on six or more 3-pointers three times as a Buckeye. He led Ohio State to a win over Texas Tech in Dallas (Dec. 16) with 23 points. Stockman leads Ohio State with 24 steals. His shooting percentage of .439 (69-157) is the best of his career. He has made at least one 3-pointer in each of the last 27 games as a Buckeye. His one made 3-pointer vs. Portland State was the 250th of his career. His five made treys vs. Texas Tech gave him 100 as a Buckeye. He has 264 for his career and 109 at OSU. He played his 100th career game vs. New Hampshire (12/28/04). He is working on 3,000 career minutes (2,970). He needs 10 points to reach 1,300 for his career. Stockman’s average of 4.1 rebounds a game is best season average of his career. He has 15 assists in the last three games.

Freshman Jamar Butler has played the most minutes of the freshman class to date (231/17.8 per game). He has just seven turnovers to go with 34 assists for a assist-to-turnover ratio of 4.9-1. Butler has gone to the line 12 times and has made 10 (.833). Butler has at least one assist in 12 games. In the last four games, he has 14 assists and just 3 turnovers. He scored a career high 10 points in the win over St. Joseph’s (12/31/04) and was 4 for 4 from the field in that game.

Junior Je’Kel Foster has made the most of his court time off the bench this season. In 13 games he has averaged 7.8 points a game in 21.9 minutes a contest. He is second behind Stockman with 21 steals. Foster has made a 3-pointer in 12 games and as many as three in six contests. Foster has a steal in 11 of 13 games this year. He has grabbed six rebounds in each of the last two games.

Junior Terence Dials is shooting 61 percent from the field (81-133), helping the team to a 49 percent shooting percentage on the year. Dials has made 56 percent of his shots for his career (293-523). With a 16.3 points per game scoring average, he took the team scoring lead from Tony Stockman after a 24-point outing vs. New Hampshire (12/28/04). Dials has made 27 of his last 42 shots from the field (.643). He has scored in double digits 10 times this year and in 35 career games. His 17 points and 10 rebounds vs. Texas Tech (12/16) gave him his fourth career double-double. His fifth came vs. Mercer (12/22) with 29 points, a career high, and 13 rebounds. No. 6 came against New Hampshire with 24 points and a career-high tying 14 rebounds. He recorded his third-consecutive double-double with 24 points and 10 rebounds vs. St. Joseph’s (12/31/04) marking the first time since 1986 (Dennis Hopson) that an OSU player has recorded a double-double in three-consecutive games. Dials has scored 20 or more points in five of the last six games with a streak of eight in a row with 10 or more. He has been the team’s leading score in the last four games and in six games this year. He has been the squad’s top rebounding if five in a row and in 11 games on the year.

Junior Matt Sylvester has made 47 percent of his 3-point attempts this year in 13 games (9-19). His seven points came in succession against St. Joseph’s (12/21/04) to help Ohio State hold a second-half advantage. He has at least one assist in 12 of 13 contests this year. His tip-in basket late vs. Texas Tech (12/16) broke a 71-all tie and helped the Buckeyes hold off the Red Raiders for a 77-71 win in Dallas. His six rebounds vs. Morehead State (12/19) are a season high.

Veteran Buckeyes Improve Shooting
Ohio State has seven returning players from a year ago, six of those have made significant improvement in their shooting percentages this year. J.J. Sullinger has improved the most from a year ago, increasing his shooting percentage by about 20 percent.

Player 04-05 03-04 Career Terence Dials .609 .505 .560 B. Fuss-Cheatham .431 .390 .346 Ivan Harris .505 .458 .484 Tony Stockman .439 .381 .378 J.J. Sullinger .609 .444 .463 Matt Sylvester .472 .370 .420

Hoops Coaches 10-3 In First Games at OSU
The 13 all-time men’s basketball head coaches at Ohio State have a combined record of 10-3 in their first games as Buckeye head coaches. Thad Matta, coach No. 13 in Ohio State history, won his opener vs. Towson, 74-53, Nov. 15.

Buckeyes Win No. 109 this Decade
Ohio State’s record in the first decade of the 21st century is shaping up to be one of the best in the history of the program. Ohio State is 109-59 (.649) since the beginning of the 1999-2000 season. The winning percentage is the second highest since 1910-19. The Buckeyes were 188-69 (.732) from 1960-69.

Stockman Puts Name in Record Book
Tony Stockman made 73 3-point field goals as a junior, the third most by an OSU player in a single season. His 61 steals total for 2003-04 tied him for the No. 7 spot with Michael Redd (1998) for single season steals at OSU. Stockman also attempted 202 3-pointers a year ago, good for the No. 3 spot all-time for single season long range attempts. He leads Ohio State with 36 made 3-pointers and with 92 attempted treys this year. He also is the team leader with 24 steals.

Ohio State 85-20 at VCA
The Buckeyes began season No. 7 at Value City Arena Nov. 15 against Towson in the opening round of the Guardians Classic. The facility opened for the start of the 1998-99 season and since the Buckeyes have built a record of 85-20 in 105 home games. The Buckeyes have not had a home losing season in the VCA’s existence and have 11 or more wins in five of the six years to date, including 15 victories in 1999-2000 and 2001-02 and 14 wins in both 1998-99 and 2000-01. Ohio State is 9-0 in 2004-05 and 8-0 at VCA. The team played Chattanooga at St. John Arena earlier this year.

2007 NCAA Tournament Returns to Columbus
The NCAA tournament will return to Columbus for the opening rounds of the 2007 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament, the organization announced in July. Ohio State played host to the first and second rounds in 2004. Games were played at Nationwide Arena in downtown Columbus, which will again be the site of the event in 2007. Ohio State will act as the host institution for the event.

Clemson, LSU Last to Face OSU
Entering the 2004-05 season, the Buckeyes had played every team from both the Atlantic Coast and Southeastern conferences except for one member school from each league. With both Clemson (ACC) and Louisiana State (SEC) on the schedule this year, Ohio State will finish the year with at least one meeting against every member of the ACC and SEC.

5th Ohio Mr. Basketball Joins Buckeyes
Jamar Butler is the 17th overall and fifth Ohio Mr. Basketball Award winner to play for Ohio State. Butler joins Tony Stockman (2000), Damon Stringer (1995), Greg Simpson (1991, 1992) and Jim Jackson (1988, 1989) as former Ohio Mr. Basketball award winners who went on to play for the Buckeyes.

Attendance in Top 20 for 6th-consecutive Year
Attendance at Ohio State men’s basketball games remained in the Top 20 nationally in 2003-04 and has ranked among the national leaders in all six seasons at Value City Arena. Attendance averaged 14,521 in 15 home games a year ago to rank No. 18 nationally. A total of 1,631,437 have crossed the turnstiles at VCA for an average of 16,819 over 97 total home games since the facility opened for the 1998-99 season. The average is 3,543 more than the capacity (13,276) at St. John Arena, the former home of the Buckeyes (1956-1998).

NCAA Attendance in VCA Era Division I Home Attendance Leaders Year Gms. Total Avg. NCAA Rk 1999 15 258,348 17,223 7 2000 17 317,936 18,702 5 2001 17 298,172 17,540 4 2002 17 282,250 16,603 5 2003 16 256,914 16,057 10 2004 15 217,817 14,521 18 Totals 97 1,631,437 16,819

The Schedule
Ohio State opened the season Nov. 15 at home in the first of two rounds in the Guardians Classic. The Buckeyes advanced in the event to Kansas City against Houston (Nov. 23) and Creighton Nov. 24. Other non-conference highlights included the game at St. John Arena against Chattanooga, a road game at Clemson Dec. 1 in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge, and additional road games at Texas Tech in Dallas Dec. 16 and at Louisiana State Jan. 15. The Texas Tech game concludes a home-and-home with the Red Raiders. The contests vs. St. Joseph’s and LSU begin home-and-home series with each school. St. Joseph’s, which spent time ranked No. 1 a year ago, will visit Value City Arena Dec. 31. Thad Matta, Ohio State’s first-year head coach, is familiar with the Hawks, having knocked off No. 1 St. Joseph’s 87-67 in the quarterfinals of the Atlantic 10 Tournament last March in Dayton.

Lewis to play for hometown Buckeyes
Ron Lewis, who played his first two seasons of college basketball at Bowling Green State University, transferred to his native Columbus to join Thad Matta at Ohio State. Lewis, a 2002 Brookhaven High School graduate, averaged 14.6 points and scored 877 points in his two seasons with the Falcons. He averaged 17.0 points and earned second team All-Mid American Conference honors as a sophomore before his transfer to Ohio State. Lewis started 55 of 60 career games at BGSU and was an 81 percent foul shooter (340-420) for his career. He will have two years of eligibility at Ohio State beginning with the 2005-06 campaign and becomes the first player to join the Buckeyes under Matta’s direction.

Majority of Buckeye Roster from Ohio
Nine of the 12 student athletes on the 2004-05 Buckeyes roster hail from their home state of Ohio. Seniors Matt Marinchick (Hudson) and Tony Stockman (Medina), juniors J.J. Sullinger (Columbus), Ron Lewis (Columbus), Terence Dials (Youngstown) and Matt Sylvester (Cincinnati), sophomore Ivan Harris (Springfield) and freshmen Jamar Butler (Lima) and Matt Terwilliger (Troy) all found their way home to play for Ohio State.

Six Buckeyes Spend Year in Residence
A total of six student-athletes on the 2004-05 roster have spent a year on the Ohio State campus without playing in games for the Buckeyes. Juniors Terence Dials (2002-03) and Matt Sylvester (2001-02) each sat out a season with back injuries but received medical redshirt seasons to retain four years of eligibility. Senior Matt Marinchick (2000-01) decided to redshirt his first year in Columbus to gain strength and experience. Finally, senior Tony Stockman and junior J.J. Sullinger both sat out the 2002-03 season to satisfy NCAA transfer rules after leaving Clemson and Arkansas, respectively, following the 2001-02 season. Ron Lewis, a junior transfer from Bowling Green, is sitting out the 2004-05 season and will become eligible to play for the Buckeyes in 2005-06. He will have two years of eligibility.