A near perfect game will be required for the Ohio State basketball team to advance.
It would be nice and ideal for the Ohio State basketball team to play a perfect game versus Gonzaga but that is not possible. No team can do that. Therefore, as close to a perfect game will be needed.
In some circumstances, stats in terms of what teams have done over the course of the season can be thrown out the window during the NCAA Tournament. While Ohio State doesn’t frequently face Gonzaga, the two teams did play each other back in November.
Being that this is a rematch game, the box score from then cannot be overlooked as it does not reflect the whole season. Before getting into that, there are aspects of their previous matchup that should impact Saturday’s game we won’t see in the first box score.
More from Factory of Sadness
- Bet $1 on ANYTHING to Unlock $200 Guaranteed with Crazy Bet365 Ohio Promo!
- 3 reasons why the Cleveland Cavaliers have a good shot to win the East next year
- It might be too soon to say it but it looks like the Cleveland Guardians are back
- Are the Cleveland Browns a Top 10 roster heading into the 2023 season?
- Eastern Conference Solidarity: Back the Heat with $5 Bet, Win $200 Bonus INSTANTLY with DraftKings Promo
From players tendencies based off what they see and how they adjust to how and when teams use timeouts and what they draw up afterward are just a couple of examples.
To continue on in the “big dance”, Ohio State cannot afford to play like they did on both ends of the court again. When the Buckeyes traveled west to play Gonzaga earlier in the year, they lost 86-59.
To change that Saturday night, Ohio State first off cannot get behind early. They were down 44-31 at halftime.
Getting more out of F Keita Bates-Diop (7 points and 10 rebounds) is crucial. The same goes for guards Kam Williams (had just 6 points) and C.J. Jackson (12 points) also needs to be priorities. There were others who had down games in the initial meeting but those are worth highlighting the most.
For some players, the issue was point production then. For others, it was everything else — rebounds, assists, and so on. Regardless, from an offensive viewpoint, Ohio State must pick up their overall play.
On the defensive side, there are also areas of concern. Gonzaga made 58.5 percent of their field goals and 48 percent from beyond the arc. Ohio State will need to decrease those numbers to between 45-50 and under 40 percent respectively to be in contention to win.
If not enough Buckeyes step up offensively while not putting their foot down on defense enough, then they are going to struggle to win. Prediction for the game: Offensively Ohio State improves but their defense does not. Ohio State’s season ends with a 77-67 loss.