Monday, January 3, 2011

Iowa vs Ohio State Men's Basketball Preview

Big 10 play kicked off last week with a loss to Illinois. Iowa played them pretty tough, but Illinois shot ridiculously well. Ohio State is the next Big 10 foe to visit Carver this Tuesday. So far this season, they seem to be the team to beat in the Big 10. But, how does Iowa match up?

First, let's look at Iowa's offense:

The offensive rating is simply the average of the five scores from the graph. 102 means that Iowa's offense has been a little above average so far. Clearly, this team's strength is offensive rebounding. So far they have been 12% above NCAA average in offensive rebounding percentage.

Here is Ohio State's offense:

Yikes. Ohio State is great at everything except at getting to the free throw line. But, when they shoot 17% and rebound 39% better than NCAA average, I don't think free throw rate matters all that much. They also share the ball very well and do not turn it over.

On defense:

This has been Iowa's strength so far this year. They have limited opponents second chances by pulling down defensive rebounds, and not letting the other teams grab offensive boards. They have also held opponents to 4% under NCAA average in effective FG%. Iowa has been good at creating turnovers this year also. They have been 12% above NCAA average so far. Iowa has also kept opponents from getting to the free throw line this year.

Ohio State's defense:

Ohio State is obviously good on both sides of the ball. They are even better at limiting second chances than Iowa has been. They have forced more turnovers and held opponents to worse shooting. The biggest thing they seem to do well is keep their opponents from getting to the line. NCAA average in free throws attempted per field goals attempted is 0.38. Ohio State is only allowing opponents to get to the free throw line on 18% of their field goal attempts.

Opposing Players to Watch:
  • True freshman Jared Sullinger is a star. He is averaging 17.65 points per game. He is also one of the best rebounders in the Big 10. He is pulling down 13.5% of all offensive rebounds and 28.8% of all defensive rebounds while he is on the court.
  • Jon Diebler is Ohio State's sharp shooter. He is shooting a ridiculous 51.2% from three point range, which has led to an insane 73.5% effective FG%. Let's hope Iowa plays him better than they played ISU's Christopherson.
  • Dallas Lauderdale does all the dirty work for Ohio State. He pulls down 9.5% of all offensive and 19.6% of all defensive rebounds while in the game. He also has blocked 13.1% of opponents shot attempts while on the court. 
  • David Lighty and William Buford are also averaging 12 and 14 points per game respectively.
  •  Ohio State is averaging 1.22 points per possession on offense, and are holding opposing teams to 0.81 points per possession.
  •  Ohio State has taken 32.14% of their shots from three point range and 67.86% from inside the arc.
  • Ohio State has scored 54% of their points from two point field goals, 28.7% from three point field goals, and 16.7% from free throws.
  •  Iowa is averaging 1.02 points per possession on offense, and are only giving up 0.90 points per possession on defense.
  • Iowa has taken 30.21% of their field goal attempts from three point range and 69.79% of their shots have been two point attempts.
  • Iowa has scored 55.2% of their points from two point field goals, 24.6% from three point field goals, and 20.2% from free throws.

In all reality, Iowa should not stand a chance in this game. Ohio State has too many players. Sullinger, Diebler, Buford, and Lighty can all put the ball in the hoop. Lauderdale and Sullinger clean up on the boards, and make it hard to score inside. Iowa is going to need a big game from Gatens and May. They are also going to need a big game in the post from Basabe or Cole. If they can compete with Lauderdale and Sullinger for rebounds, and Iowa has a good shooting night they may keep it competitive. However, if Iowa gets in a shooting drought for any period of time they're done. Overall, I would consider this a victory for the Hawkeyes if they just keep the game competitive. I expect the Hawkeyes to lose by double digits. I sure hope I am wrong.

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