February 13, 2019

Ohio State, Illinois Set to Meet Thursday in Columbus

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Ohio State Men's Basketball GamedayFeb. 14, 2019
OpponentIllinois (9-15, 5-8 B1G)
SiteValue City Arena (18,809)
Time7 p.m. ET
TelevisionESPN2 | Watch ESPN
TalentJason Benetti (Play-By-Play)
Robbie Hummel (Expert Analysis)
RadioOSU-IMG Sports Network (67 stations)
Listen Free: Ohio State Buckeyes App | OhioStateBuckeyes.com
Local RadioWBNS-FM 97.1
AM-1460
Satellite RadioSirius (84) / XM (84)
Radio TalentPaul Keels (Play-By-Play)
Ron Stokes (Expert Analysis)
Live StatsGameday Live
Game NotesOhio State | Illinois | Big Ten
Preview Press ConferenceOhio State
Follow the Buckeyes on Social MediaTwitter | Facebook | Instagram
2018-19 Game NotesGame Notes Archive
TicketsSingle Game | Group | Season | Student

Starting Five

  • The Ohio State men’s basketball team traveled to Spain for 11 days over the summer. The Buckeyes played a total of three games, one in each stop during the trip, which began Aug. 1 with a flight to Madrid. Three days were spent in Madrid (W, 93-61 vs. Madrid Generals), Valencia (W, 95-63 vs. Valencia All-Stars) and Barcelona (W, 68-66 vs. Catalan All-Stars) before the team returned to Columbus Aug. 11. The team also experienced several cultural tours, team meals and excursions.
  • Six Buckeyes are shooting better than 70 percent from the foul line this season. Freshman Luther Muhammad upped his foul shooting percentage with a 7-of-8 effort at Nebraska and an 8-for-8 outing vs. Penn State. He is shooting at a 74 percent clip to date (43-58). Guards C.J. Jackson and Keyshawn Woods shoot 80 percent and 82 percent, respectively. Brothers Kaleb Wesson (73 percent) and Andre Wesson (75 percent) join freshman Jaedon LeDee (75 percent) in the frontcourt.
  • With 251 wins in the last nine seasons (2010-19), Ohio State already has more victories this decade than in any other in the program’s history. Ohio State won 189 games from 1980-1989 and 188 contests from 1960-69. The winning percentage of .730 (251-93/344) in the last 10 years is the best previous winning percentage in a decade in Ohio State history. The win total is No. 12 nationally over the last 10 seasons and second only to Michigan State’s 257 wins among Big Ten teams.
  • The Buckeyes have four wins in eight tries in 2018-19 vs. teams that made the 2018 NCAA Tournament. Ohio State defeated two of those teams on the road (Cincinnati, 64-56/Creighton, 69-60), lost at No. 5 Michigan (65-49) and took down UCLA (80-66) on a neutral court. At home, the Buckeyes fell vs. Syracuse (L, 72-62), No. 8 Michigan State (86-77) and Purdue (79-67) and have a win over Bucknell (W, 73-71). Ohio State has at least two games remaining vs. teams that made the 2018 NCAA Tournament: at Purdue and at Michigan State.
  • Ohio State will play 11 games against teams among the Associated Press Top 25 or receiving votes for Top 25 consideration. Six of those games will be played away from Value City Arena. The Buckeyes face No. 6 Michigan (away), No. 11 Michigan State (home/away), No. 12 Purdue (home/away), No. 20 Wisconsin (home), No. 21 Iowa (home/away) and No. 24 Maryland (home/away) among teams currently in the Top 25. Against those receiving votes, Ohio State faced Cincinnati (away).

Notable Numbers
C.J. Jackson reached 100 career 3-pointers made with three makes vs. Cleveland State (11/23/18) … for his Ohio State career he is (134-360/.372) from distance … has scored 902 career points after a 10-point effort at Indiana and is on pace to become Ohio State’s next 1,000-point scorer … Kyle Young, who missed four games with a stress fracture in his right leg, is 56-for-77 shooting this season (.727) … he returned to action vs. Penn State Feb. 7 after suffering the injury vs. Maryland Jan. 18 … Joey Lane has appeared in nine games this season and is 4-for-5 from the field and 3-for-4 from 3-point range … he also has six rebounds, six assists and a pair of steals in 3.1 minutes per game.

Scouting the Illinois Fighting Illini
Illinois enters the game vs. the Buckeyes with an overall 9-15 record on the heels of three-consecutive home wins vs. Nebraska, Michigan State and Rutgers. Illinois opened the season with a home win over Evansville, 99-60, falling to Georgetown in Champaign in the Gavitt Games, 88-80. In the Maui Classic, Illinois fell to Gonzaga, Iowa State and Xavier before returning home to take care of Mississippi Valley State. Prior to the Nebraska game, the Illini dropped a close one in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge at Notre Dame, 76-74. Since an Ohio State win in Chicago over the Illini Dec. 5, Illinois has gone 7-8 overall. Trent Frazier (14.7 ppg.), Ayo Dosunmu (14.1 ppg.) and Giorgi Bezhanishvili (12.2 ppg.) all average double figures offensively. Bezhanishvili grabs a team-high 5.0 rebounds a game.

The Ohio State vs. Illinois Series
Illinois leads the overall series vs. Ohio State 102-73. Ohio State is 45-41 in Columbus while the Illini own a 60-26 advantage in Champaign. On neutral courts, the Buckeyes lead 2-1. Ohio State is 30-21 all-time vs. Big Ten teams on neutral courts. The Buckeyes defeated Illinois in Chicago at the United Center Dec. 5, 2018 in the other meeting this year. C.J. Jackson is the most experienced Buckeye in the Illinois series with two games played. He averages 4.5 points and 3.5 rebounds. Sophomore Kaleb Wesson scored 10 points a year ago in the only meeting with the Illini. He also added 10 rebounds.

Ohio State vs. the Big Ten
The Buckeyes own an overall record of 823-723 against current league members. Chris Holtmann is new to the Big Ten but no stranger to Big Ten competition. He faced six league opponents during his six years as a head coach prior to taking over for the Buckeyes last year. He entered his first year of Big Ten competition with a 4-5 record vs. conference foes. He is 25-17 vs. conference opponents in eight years as a head coach.