It is a typical Monster Saturday for College Basketball featuring 4 games between ranked opponents. But no game on this day compares to the game occurring in Madison at 2:00. I think Dick Vitale is excited enough for the rest of us. What a week for Dickie V. He gets to go to Cameron Indoor on Wednesday to watch his favorite team pull off a mind-boggling comeback over their bitter rival and now he gets to watch the number 1 team in the country put it all on the line in the most hostile environment they have played in all year.
Can you say, “It’s totally awesome baby” for me?
In America’s 2nd best conference, yes I said it, the Big East has proven that it is once again the elite Conference in America up to this point, we got the two top teams going head to head. Ohio State has exemplified perfection all year. They are the lone undefeated team left in the country at 24 and 0, and a win today would go a long way towards them running the table. I guess you could say that about any game in all honesty though. Because just one-off day, could ruin the dream. No team has run the table since the 1976 version of the Indiana Hoosiers. It is no easy task.
The Badgers on the other hand come in on a 3 game winning streak. Winners of 34 of their last 35 home contests. And appear ready to end the Buckeye’s hopes of perfection. I mean they ruined the Buckeye’s National Title shot in football this Fall. Why can’t they do it in basketball?
Many will say that Ohio State is too talented and Wisconsin lacks the overall depth to pull the upset. Playing on the road is never an easy task. Especially in a hostile environment like the one in Madison. But I will state that Ohio State will not run the table. Though I feel they are the best team in America without question, running the table in this day and age is near impossible. There is a reason why the Buckeyes have lost in their last 8 trips to the Kohl Center. Bo Ryan is a great coach and Wisconsin knows how to win at home.
I still have Ohio State as my favorite to win the National Championship. But this team is not invincible. Their last 3 Saturday wins have been extremely hard-fought and a struggle has ensued. Northwestern nearly nipped the Bucks. As did Illinois and Penn State on the Saturdays before. Well I think the 4th time will be the charm sadly for Buckeye Nation. And this loss will not rip the heart out of the Buckeyes. It will only motivate them more for the stretch run. They will not have the aura of an undefeated season hanging over their heads. Thad and the crew will be able to just strictly focus on winning the rest of their Big Ten games and heading into the Madness ready to handle business.
So I have no definitive reason why I feel today will be the day from a matchup standpoint. Ohio State matches up well with pretty much every team in the entire country. They are the nation’s best team. No team features the inside presence and the perimeter ability that the Buckeyes have. Defending Ohio State is basically a pick your poison type of task. There is no correct way to stifle their offensive attack. But the Kohl Center and Saturday games have been a struggle for the Buckeyes. Wisconsin is a very good team and has one of America’s most underrated coaches in Bo Ryan.
Book it that the Buckeyes will be 24 and 1 by 4:30 Eastern time today. I got the Badgers winning a nail biter by 1. Madison will have an re-enactment of October 16th, when they stunned the undefeated and number 1 ranked Buckeyes football team.
Also expect Dick Vitale to provide much excitement from the broadcast team today. You will not want to miss this one.
Stay tuned for the next edition of TheSportsKraze.