Sunday, February 14, 2010

Ohio State can be Scary Good

Ohio State annihilated Illinois today. Illinois, the hot team that was coming off two huge wins against Michigan State and Wisconsin. The barrage of 3s from Jon Diebler and David Lighty took the fight out of Illinois early. Ohio State hit 11 3s on the day and when Ohio State is more than Turner, knocking off hot teams at the height of their game is just another day at the office. Speaking of, Evan Turner turned in another double double.

This team doesn't qualify as under the rader at number 13 in the nation, but if they can manage a Big Ten Title, they could be primed for an excellent March and awesome April. Their next two games are Purdue at home and then on the road to Michigan State. That two game stretch is big, Big Ten wise. They're shooting almost 57 percent from the field. And, if they can make it past Purdue at home, that could spell bad things for Michigan State, who has had trouble defending elite competition recently. Kalin Lucas did a fantastic job this past weekend of staying in front of Talor Battle, despite his ankle still not being 100%. The Spartans even got one heck of a defensive performance from Mike Kebler on Battle in the second half. As good as Battle is, though, he's no Turner.

The Buckeyes don't utilize their bench much and they're very reliant on Evan Turner. But, as long as he stays healthy, Turner is the kind of player who can give everything to his team. Everything. Make no mistake, the point guard is not his natural position. But, when Thad Matta asked him to take it up this season, he didn't miss a beat. The de-pantsing of Illinois today was a manifestation of what an elite team is capable of doing. Depending on the outcome of their next two games, I'll have them penciled pretty deep in my bracket.

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