Make no mistake, Buckeye fans didn't want to witness the fall of their team to an A-10 opponent let alone one whose fans disrespected head coach Thad Matta with boos over the course of the two days. But while some in the media will look to dismantle the Buckeyes chances of advancing to the Final Four after such a performance, those who've followed the team know this was not the same Buckeye team who captured the Big Ten regular and post-season titles.
Getting three points from the bench play of Cook, Lighty, Terwilliger and Hunter and zero points from starter Ivan Harris could have proved to be the difference if not for the great performances of Ron Lewis and Mike Conley Jr. as both scored well over their season average. The fact Greg Oden fouled out for the first time this season just proves the refs were looking hard at the inside play. But while some may ask how strong the Big Ten really was as all but the Buckeyes have bowed out, this is still a team with great depth and the ability to take their game to another level on both ends of the court.
One look back at last years Final Four teams will show similar paths
taken by LSU, UCLA, George Mason and champion
George Mason enjoyed not having pressure placed on them and gave
everything they had against UConn in a wild thriller while LSU saw their scare come in the
second-round against Texas A&M before winning by 1 point. UCLA who would advance to play the
Gators saw a close 3-point victory over
So while members of the media will be talking about the Buckeyes close
victory and dismissing them, Coach Matta will have his team refocused and ready
to take on
VOLS AND THOSE LEFT IN THE BRACKET
While Bruce Pearl and others will
talk about the close game
Since that loss the Buckeyes have won nineteen contests in a row and learned to win games during crunch time in the process.
Just as in their first match-up
So let your nails grow, take your heart medicine and clear your schedule
as you prepare this week to watch the Buckeyes punch their ticket for