Ohio State Men's Basketball 2013 NCAA Tournament Capsule

Ohio State Buckeyes
Big Ten (26-7, 13-5)

 Purchase Ohio State Merchandise

There were some major questions about how well Ohio State would do without Jared Sullinger and William Buford. Most of those questions have been answered. The Buckeyes may not be a favorite to reach Atlanta, but they definitely have the talent to make back-to-back appearances in the Final Four. In order to do so Deshaun Thomas will have to lead the way. The 6-7 junior has a history of stepping up during the NCAA Tournament, so do not be surprised if he eclipses his 19.5 point per game average in March.

Big Wins: 1/13 Michigan (56-53), 2/24 Michigan State (68-60), 3/5 at Indiana (67-58)
Bad Losses: 1/5 at Illinois (55-74), 2/10 Indiana (68-81), 2/17 at Wisconsin (49-71)
Coach: Thad Matta (9 seasons at Ohio State)

Why They Can Surprise:
Lenzelle Smith and Aaron Craft are the top two scorers behind Thomas. Smith is a fine shooter and a very good rebounder for a 6-4 guard. Craft is known more for his point guard abilities and defense, but he is capable of scoring as well, whether it be attacking the basket or pulling up for a mid-range jumper. Craft does an amazing job keeping the turnovers down and creates plenty on the other end of the floor. With such a great all-around defense and Craft winning the turnover battle, the Buckeyes are tough to beat. When Craft needs a break or Coach Thad Matta wants an extra ball handler on the floor, Shannon Scott will be available. Scott is not much of an offensive threat, but he is a great defender and passer who can step right in for Craft.

Why They Can Disappoint:
The lack of an efficient interior scorer can be very tough on the Ohio State offense. If Thomas is not finding space to attack the basket or his shot is not falling, the Buckeyes do not have too many other options. Sam Thompson, Evan Ravenel, Amir Williams and LaQuinton Ross all bring something to the table, but none of them have yet developed into consistent scorers in the paint. Thompson is a great athlete who can block some shots and play solid defense. Ravenel will get the call when the Buckeyes need a better rebounding presence on the floor. Ross can stretch out the defense with his shooting ability, while Williams is easily the best shot blocker on the team. Coach Matta has depth and talent in the paint, but the sting of replacing Sullinger is still prevalent. Thomas, Smith and Craft will have to carry Ohio State to the Final Four, yet they will get some help from the frontcourt. With enough help, Ohio State will be a team nobody wants to see in their bracket.

Probable Starters:
Aaron Craft, Junior, Guard, 9.9 ppg, 4.6 apg, 2.0 spg
Lenzelle Smith, Junior, Guard, 9.5 ppg, 1.5 apg, 4.9 rpg
Deshaun Thomas, Junior, Forward, 19.5 ppg, 6.2 rpg
Sam Thompson, Sophomore, Forward, 7.4 ppg, 3.2 rpg
Amir Williams, Sophomore, Center, 3.8 ppg, 4.0 rpg

Key Roleplayers:
Evan Ravenel, Senior, Forward, 5.1 ppg, 4.4 rpg
LaQuinton Ross, Sophomore, Forward, 7.5 ppg, 2.8 rpg
Shannon Scott, Sophomore, Guard, 4.8 ppg, 3.8 apg

By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 70.1 (109th in nation, 4th in conference)
Scoring Defense: 58.7 (22, 2)
Field-Goal Percentage: 45.3 (75, 4)
Field-Goal Defense: 39.4 (41, 5)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 6.1 (173, 6)  
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 35.7 (85, 3)
Free-Throw Percentage: 69.6 (164, 7)
Rebound Margin: 3.9 (63, 7)
Assists Per Game: 13.2 (139, 9)
Turnovers Per Game: 10.8 (10, 5)

Last Five Postseason Appearances:
2012    NCAA    Round of 64 win over Loyola (MD)
2012    NCAA    Round of 32     win over Gonzaga
2012    NCAA    Regional Semifinal win over Cincinnati
2012    NCAA    Regional Final win over Syracuse
2012    NCAA    National Semifinal loss to Kansas
2011    NCAA    Round of 64 win over Texas-San Antonio
2011    NCAA    Round of 32 win over George Mason
2011    NCAA    Regional Semifinal loss to Kentucky
2010    NCAA    Round of 64 win over UC-Santa Barbara
2010    NCAA    Round of 32 win over Georgia Tech
2010    NCAA    Regional Semifinal loss to Tennessee
2009    NCAA    Round of 64 loss to Siena
2008    NIT        First Round win over UNC-Asheville
2008    NIT        Second Round win over California
2008    NIT        Quarterfinal win over Dayton
2008    NIT        Semifinal win over Mississippi
2008    NIT        Final win over Massachusetts

*all team stats through 3/10


See All Men’s Basketball Postseason Capsules