Feb. 15, 2013

No. 13 Ohio State Buckeyes (18-6, 8-4) at No. 20 Wisconsin Badgers (17-8, 8-4)

Date: Feb. 17, 2013
Site: Kohl Center (17,230)
Game Time: 1:05 p.m. ET
Television: CBS
Talent: Tim Brando (play-by-play)
Bill Raftery (expert analysis)
Radio: OSU-IMG Sports Network (56 stations)
Satellite Radio: Sirius 128/XM 192
Local Radio: WBNS FM-97.1 AM-1460
Radio Talent: Paul Keels (play-by-play)
Ron Stokes (expert analysis)
Ohio State Notes | Wisconsin 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/ Thomas

Thomas Working on 500-club Inclusion, Again
Thirty Ohio State players have reached the 500-point mark in a single season at least once. Deshaun Thomas is on track to become the 14th player to do so multiple times. 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 20.2 points per game for a total of 485 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.

Opponents Look for the 3 vs. Buckeyes
In 24 games this season, opponents have shot at least 20 3-pointers in 12 games, including at least 24 attempts in four of the last five Big Ten regular-season games. Three of the last five opponents have made 11 or more treys against the Buckeyes. In seven of 12 league games this season, opponents have attempted 20 or more 3-pointers with Wisconsin attempted 28, making 11, in a loss in Columbus (58-49) Jan. 29. Ohio State is 5-2 in league play when foes attempt 20 or more from distance.

The Wisconsin Series
Ohio State has won four of the last six meetings with the Badgers, including the last time out at the Kohl Center a year ago (58-52, Feb. 4, 2012). Overall, the Buckeyes own the series lead with an 84-66 record and are 28-43 in games played in Madison. As a ranked team, Ohio State is 22-11 in the Wisconsin series, while the Badgers are 10-9 vs. the Buckeyes when ranked. When both teams are among Top 25, Ohio State has won six of the nine games played. Junior Deshaun Thomas leads Ohio State against the Badgers with an average of 13.4 points per game over five career meetings. Senior Evan Ravenel is Ohio State’s rebound leader with 4.0 boards a game. Both Thomas and classmate Aaron Craft have made at least half their shots in the series. Thomas is shooting 57 percent (28-49) while Craft knocks down 50 percent of his shots (16-32) against the Badgers.
A Look at the Badgers
Wisconsin enters the game with the Buckeyes with an overall record of 17-8 and a Big Ten Conference mark of 8-4. The Badgers opened league play with four wins in a row before dropping games at Iowa and to Michigan State in Madison. Minnesota fell at the Kohl Center Jan. 26, 45-44 before Ohio State won in Columbus over the Badgers 58-49 Jan. 29. Since that game, the Badgers have won three of four games. The last three Wisconsin games have gone to overtime with the Badgers winning two of three. Minnesota, Ohio State’s next opponent, knocked off Wisconsin the last time out last Thursday in Minneapolis 58-53 in an overtime affair. Jared Berggren (11.7 ppg.), Ryan Evans (10.6 ppg.) and Ben Brust (11.2 ppg.) all contribute double figures offensively for the Badgers. Evans leads the team with 7.8 rebounds a game.   

Thomas, Craft celebrate Century Mark
Both Deshaun Thomas (63 games started) and Aaron Craft (64 gs) played in their 100th career game last Thursday when Ohio State defeated Northwestern 69-59 in Columbus. The junior starters have experienced great success over the first 100 games of their careers. Ohio State is 83-17 (.830) overall and 36-11 (.766) in Big Ten regular-season games over the last three seasons. The pair has two Big Ten regular-season titles, two Big Ten tournament appearances with one BTT title (2011), two NCAA Sweet 16 appearances and one trip to the Final Four (2012) to their credit. Classmate Lenzelle Smith Jr., shares the successes in 83 career game appearances.

Craft Moving Up Big Ten Steals Chart
Aaron Craft is 17 steals shy of moving to the Top 7 in all-time steals in Big Ten history. After recording three steals vs. Northwestern Feb. 14, Craft has 218 for his career, already the Ohio State record and currently tied for No. 8 all-time in Big Ten history. Kendall Gill (1987-90) of Illinois and Titus Ivory (1998-2001) of Penn State are tied with Craft. Dee Brown (2003-06) of Illinois is No. 7 with 231.

Career Steals (Big Ten)

1. 324 Bruce Douglas, Illinois 1983-86
2. 300 Gary Grant, Michigan 1985-88
3. 275 Mike Kelley, Wisconsin 1998-2001
4. 274 Chris Kramer, Purdue 2007-10
5. 272 Pat Baldwin, Northwestern 1991-1994
6. 259 Brian Cardinal, Purdue 1997-2000
7. 231 Dee Brown, Illinois 2003-06
8. 218 Aaron Craft, Ohio State 2010-present
  218 Kendall Gill, Illinois 1987-1990
  218 Titus Ivory, Penn State 1998-2001

Craft Makes list of 12 Cousy finalists
Aaron Craft, a junior guard for the Buckeyes, is among the candidates for the 2013 Bob Cousy Award, presented annually to the top point guard in the country. The list of more than 80 nominations was cut to 12 Feb. 7. A final five will be announced March 11. The winner will be announced at the 2013 Final Four weekend. Fans can narrow the list to five by voting at

Craft Earns Spot on Academic District Team
Aaron Craft, a junior on the Ohio State men’s basketball team, was named to the 2013 Capitol One Academic All-District (5) First Team Jan. 31. Craft, a 2012 Capitol One First Team Academic All-American, advances to the 2013 national ballot after making the district squad this year. A nutrition (pre-med) major, Craft carries a 3.92 grade-point average. The defending 2012 Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year, Craft set the Ohio State career steals record this year. He enters the Wisconsin game with 218 career thefts.

Thomas Makes Robertson List
The United States Basketball Writers Association announced the midseason watch list for the Oscar Robertson National Player of the Year Jan. 31. Ohio State junior Deshaun Thomas made the 12-member midseason list. after leading the Big Ten in scoring with 20.2 points per game. He has reached 20 or more points in eight conference games this season, including a 22-point effort most recently vs. Northwestern Feb. 14.

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