NCAA Basketball returns with an exciting clash from the Big Ten Conference. The #4 ranked Ohio State Buckeyes host the Indiana Hoosiers at The Schottenstein Center at 12 pm EST today.
The Buckeyes are in excellent form at the moment. They have won their last five games, which includes wins over Iowa and Wisconsin. They boast an excellent 16-4 record currently, which has got them the #3 spot in the Big Ten conference currently. With five games left, they will push for a title charge, but it could be too late.
The Hoosiers also arrive in good spirits after wins against Iowa and Northwestern in their last two games. The Northwestern Wildcats took them to overtime, but the Hoosiers kept their composure to take home the win. They will be eager to win today, to improve their record against ranked opponents, which hasn’t been impressive so far.
Ibrahima Diallo (knee) and Jimmy Sotos (shoulder) will stay on the sidelines for the Buckeyes. Sotos was an important player in their rotation. He played 12 games, starting twice, but Diallo just played three games and was a borderline rotational player.
Their lineup will feature Duane Washington Jr as their sole guard, while Justin Ahrens, Justice Sueing, Kyle Young, and E.J. Liddell will start as their forwards.
The Hoosiers also have two absentees for the game. Patrick Stewart arrived as an exciting transfer but hasn’t been able to make his debut yet due to eligibility issues. Joey Brunk has also not featured yet due to a back injury.
Armaan Franklin, Aljami Durham, and Rob Phinisee will start as the guards for the Hoosiers, while Race Thompson and Trayce Jackson-Davis will start as the forwards.
The Buckeyes form will make them favorites for today’s clash. They have the #4 ranked offense in the country, which could prove too much to deal with for the Hoosiers defense. They will rely on Liddell and Washington to bring in the buckets, but Ahrens shooting could be decisive for the Buckeyes.
Their defense will also have to step up and not let Jackson-Davis get comfortable in the paint. He can change the game with his paint scoring, so the Buckeyes will have to be careful. It will be a closely fought affair, and the Buckeyes should be able to squeeze out the win.