March 20, 2011
Vote for Lighty:
No. 1 Ohio State (33-2) vs. No. 8 George Mason (27-6)
 Quicken Loans Arena (20,164)
Game Time: 5:15 p.m.
Television: CBS
Talent:  Gus Johnson (play-by-play), Len Elmore (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)

The Buckeyes in NCAA Tournament play
 In four postseason games this year, three in the 2011 Big Ten Tournament and one in NCAA tournament play, the Buckeyes have a margin of victory of 13.3 ppg. Ohio State is shooting 46 percent from the field (99-216) and has outrebounded opponents by 9.3 boards a game. Jared Sullinger is averaging 15 points and 12.8 rebounds this postseason with William Buford adding 14.8 ppg. and 4.5 rpg. Jon Diebler contributes 14.5 ppg and has made 11 of 26 from 3-point range (11-26). Aaron Craft has handed out 15 assists against just five turnovers while senior David Lighty has 11 assists and is shooting 88 percent from the foul line (7-8). Sullinger has gone to the line 40 times with 26 makes. He also leads the team with five steals. Ohio State opponents are shooting just 37 percent from the field (81-219) and 32 percent from 3-point range (27-85). Opponents have fared well from the foul line hitting 39-44 charity tosses (.885).

 Ohio State is making its 23rd appearance in the NCAA tournament. Overall, Ohio State has a 40-21 record all-time in NCAA tournament play. The Buckeyes have advanced to play in nine Final Fours, have finished as the runner up four times (1939, 1961, 1962, 2007) and own one title (1960). Ohio State has finished third four times (1944, 1945, 1946, 1968).

Year  Region/Seed  Rcd
1939  Eastern *       2-1#  Finals
1944  Eastern *       1-1#  Semifinals
1945  Eastern *       1-1#  Semifinals
1946  Eastern *       2-1#  Semifinals
1950  Eastern *       1-1  Reg. Finals
1960  Mideast *      4-0#  Finals
1961  Mideast *      3-1#  Finals
1962  Mideast *      3-1#  Finals
1968  Mideast *      3-1#  Semifinals
1971  Mideast *      1-1  Reg. Finals
1980  West/4          1-1  Reg. Semifinals
1982  East/8           0-1  First Round
1983  East/3           1-1  Reg. Semifinals
1985 Midwest/4       1-1  2nd Rnd.
1987  Southwest/9   1-1  2nd Rnd.
1990  West/8          1-1  2nd Rnd.
1991  Midwest /1      2-1  Reg. Semifinals
1992  Southwest/1    3-1  Reg. Finals
2006  Minneapolis/2 1-1  2nd Rnd.
2007  South/1         5-1#  Finals
2009  Midwest/8      0-1 1st Rnd.
2010 Midwest/2       2-1 Reg. Semifinals
2011 East/1            1-0  
Totals                    40-21 (.656)
* Teams were not seeded prior to 1979.
# Final Four Appearance

Setting the Scene
 After winning the 2011 Big Ten Tournament March 13 in Indianapolis, Ohio State enters the NCAA East Regional Third Round game vs. No. 8 George Mason (27-6) with a 33-2 overall record. Thad Matta is 8-1 in the first game of the NCAA tournament over his career. Ohio State is the No. 1 overall seed in the East Region.
Ohio State vs. 2011 NCAA Field 580-516
Ohio State vs. East Region 48-51
Ohio State vs. West Region 146-100
Ohio State vs. Southwest Region 179-204
Ohio State vs. Southeast Region 207-161
2011 Ohio State Opponents in NCAA Field 12 (17-2 rcd.)
Texas-San Antonio (1-0); WEST: Michigan (3-0), Oakland (1-0), Penn State (3-0); SOUTHWEST: Florida State (1-0), Illinois (2-0), Morehead State (1-0), Purdue (1-1); SOUTHEAST: Florida (1-0), Michigan State (1-0), Wisconsin (1-1), UNC Asheville (1-0).

Seniors Scheduled to Graduate Sunday
 Four Ohio State seniors learned just before the game Friday they had officially graduated from The Ohio State University. The four will not walk during winter graduation ceremonies Sunday in Columbus. David Lighty (consumer affairs), Jon Diebler (business marketing), Dallas Lauderdale (strategic communication) and Nikola Kecman (aviation management) earned their degrees last week. Another senior, Eddie Days of Richmond Heights, Ohio, is scheduled to graduate with a degree in family financial services following Ohio State’s 2011 Spring Quarter.  

Buckeyes vs. the Patriots
 Ohio State is 3-0 vs. George Mason University and 9-2 overall vs. the Colonial Athletic Association. The Buckeyes and Patriots first met in 1995, a 121-96 Ohio State victory at St. John Arena in Columbus. The Ohio State point total is the school record for points in a game. The Buckeyes scored 61 first half points in that game, which is tied for eighth most in a half in Ohio State history. 

Ohio State vs. George Mason
1/8/95  W  George Mason 121-96
12/9/95  W  @George Mason  92-87
12/14/96  W  George Mason  102-72 

Ohio State vs. Colonial Athletic Association
Delaware 2-0
George Mason 3-0
Georgia State
James Madison 1-1
North Carolina-Wilmington
Northeastern 0-1
Old Dominion 1-0
Towson 2-0
Virginia Commonwealth
William and Mary
Totals 9-2

Noting the UTSA Game:
Ohio State 75, UTSA 46 (March 18)

  • Ohio State is 9-7 in NCAA tournament play while playing in the East Region. Ohio State is 11-3 as the No. 1 seed. The 29 point margin of victory is the largest in OSU history in NCAA tournament play. Thad Matta is 16-8 in NCAA tournament play over his 11-year coaching career. He is 9-4 as a Buckeye in NCAA play.
  • Ohio State has won at least one game in NCAA Tournament play in 21 of 23 years in which it has appeared.
  • Ohio State handed out 26 assists on 29 total field goals in the win. The assist total is an Ohio State NCAA tournament record. The previous high was 21, three times, last vs. St. John’s 3/20/99.
  • Ohio State assisted on 26 of its 29 made field goals (89.7 pct) against UT-San Antonio, the highest assist percentage by a team in a NCAA Tournament game in the last 15 years (min 20 FG). It’s also the highest by Ohio State in any game in the last 15 years.
  • Four Buckeyes had five or more assists in the game with Aaron Craft leading the way with seven helpers. David Lighty, Jon Diebler and William Buford each had five assists apiece. Craft has handed out seven or more assists nine times this season.
  • The Buckeyes’ 33-2 overall record is the second-best start in school history (1960-61, 27-0). The win total also is second to the 35 wins recorded in 2007.
  • As a ranked team, Ohio State is 394-107 all-time.
  • Ohio State has now won eight games in a row.
  • Ohio State improves to 71-5 when ranked No. 1 by the Associated Press and 23-3 as the nation’s top team in the coaches poll.
  • Ohio State moves to 1-0 against Texas-San Antonio and 4-0 vs. members of the Southland Conference all-time.
  • The Buckeyes are 131-19 when ranked among the Top 3 in the country.
  • When ranked in the Top 10 nationally, Ohio State is 273-58 with wins in 64 of its last 69 outings.
  • Ohio State is 48-4 in its last 52 games.
  • Ohio State has won 85 games since the beginning of the 2008-09 season, tied for the fourth-best in the nation over that stretch with Pittsburgh.
  • This is the 260th-consecutive game Ohio State has made at least one 3-point field goal (1/10/04 vs. Penn State was the last game with zero made).
  • Ohio State’s four returning starters for 2010-11 (Jon Diebler, David Lighty, Dallas Lauderdale and William Buford) have combined for 432 career starts and 537 games played.
  • Thad Matta teams own four of the top eight single season win totals in Ohio State history.
  • The 33-2 record to begin the season is the best start for Thad Matta at Ohio State (previous best was in 2005-06, when the team began 11-0).
  • This season is the seventh-consecutive year Matta has guided the Buckeyes to a 20-win campaign. That extends the longest streak in Ohio State history.
  • Matta has won at least 20 games in each of his 11 seasons as a head coach. Only Mark Few (Gonzaga), among active coaches, has more consecutive 20-win seasons to start a career.
  • Matta’s career record now stands at 291-87 overall and 189-56 at Ohio State.
  • With the win, Ohio State is 37-19 in March under Matta and 6-0 this season.
  • Matta is 91-17 vs. non-conference competition at Ohio State and 98-39 vs. Big Ten foes (regular season and Big Ten tournament games) for an overall record of 189-56.
  • Ohio State remains undefeated at 33-0 this season and 174-5 under Matta when leading with five minutes to play.
  • When shooting better than the opponent, Ohio State improves to 25-1 this season and 166-18 under Matta.
  • The Buckeyes are 27-1 this season and 157-20 under Matta when leading at the half.
  • Ohio State outrebounded UTSA 35-26, Ohio State improves to 22-2 on the year and 110-16 under Matta when grabbing more boards than its opponent.
  • The Buckeyes improve to 31-1 this season and 159-44 when committing under 15 total turnovers (Ohio State had 13 turnovers vs. UTSA).
  • With 75 points, the Buckeyes are 23-0 this season and 127-11 under Matta when scoring more than 70 total points in a game.
  • The Buckeyes are 18-1 this season and 94-7 under Matta when shooting better than 50 percent from the field.
  • First-Team All-Big Ten Jared Sullinger finished the contest with 11 points. Sullinger has scored at least 10 points in 31 of 35 games.
  • With 11 points, Sullinger, just the 29th Buckeye all-time to score more than 500 points in a season, has 596 on his rookie campaign. Kosta Koufos is the last freshman to reach 500 points in a rookie season with 534 in 2008-09. Evan Turner and William Buford each scored more than 500 points last season.
  • Sullinger also added a team-high nine rebounds for the Buckeyes (his 10.1 average is second in the Big Ten). He now has 353 rebounds on the season.
  • Sullinger is second in scoring during a freshman season at Ohio State. Michael Redd is first with 658 points in 1998.
  • Sullinger 353 rebounds are the most by a freshman at Ohio State.
  • Jon Diebler’s current 3-point field goal percentage of 50 percent (106-212) puts him in the record books as having the best single season 3-point percentage.
  • Diebler’s 50 percent shooting percentage from 3-point range is No. 1 in the Big Ten.
  • With four made 3-pointers, Diebler extends his streak to 51 games in a row with at least one 3-pointer made.
  • With 14 points against UTSA, Diebler now has 1,507 career points passing Troy Taylor (1,497) for 16th-place in career scoring. Evan Turner is 15th with 1,517 career points
  • The game marked the 24th time this season Diebler has scored in double-figures.
  • The game vs. UTSA was Diebler’s 142nd game donning the Scarlet and Gray, good for second all-time at Ohio State.
  • David Lighty, the third player in Ohio State history to reach 1,000 points, 500 rebounds and 300 assists, ended the contest with eight points, one rebound and five assists. Lighty’s current marks: 1,421 points, 571 rebounds and 367 assists.
  • With eight points, Lighty now has 1,421 for his career, 21st-place in career scoring at Ohio State. Paul Ebert is 20th with 1,436.
  • Lighty has now been a part of 128 Buckeye victories during his tenure in Columbus (Lighty had 35 wins as a freshman, 24 as a sophomore and 29 as a junior in 2009-10. He is credited with seven wins at the start of the 2008-09 season, which ended when he broke his right foot and earned a medical redshirt). The previous record was set by Danny Peters and Mark Titus (both played from 2007-10), earning 110 wins apiece.
  • Lighty has played in 155 games as a Buckeye, the most all-time in an Ohio State uniform. Lighty also leads all NCAA active players in games played.
  • The game vs. UTSA marked senior David Lighty’s 123rd career start for Ohio State, tied with Ken Johnson (123, 1998-01) for third all-time as a Buckeye.
  • Junior guard William Buford had a team-high 18 points. His career total now stands at 1,397, passing Brian Brown (1,397) for 23rd place. Larry Bolden is 22nd with 1,408.
  • The 18 point-performance for Buford is the 27th time this season he has scored in double-figures, second-most on the team.
  • Aaron Craft had seven assists. He now has 160 assists on the season to just 76 turnovers. Craft averages 4.6 assists per game, leading all league freshmen.
  • Craft also had one steal for 67 total on the season (his 1.9 average per game is first in the Big Ten), leading all league freshman.
  • Craft is now in second place in steals by a freshman in Ohio State history.