NCAA Tournament: Ohio State vs. South Dakota State fearless prediction and game preview.
Date: Thursday, March 15
Game Time: 4:00 ET
Venue: Taco Bell Arena, Boise, ID
All You Really Need To Know About Ohio State (24-8)
(Big Ten), RPI: 20. 5-seed
There might have been a problem against Penn State late in the year – losing three times, including in the Big Ten Tournament – but it was a strong run from a nine-deep team with a whole lot of balance with a great rotation.
There’s not a lot happening from three, and there are problems from the free-throw line, but it’s a good-shooting team hitting close to 49% of their shots with a good interior presence. Good on the boards, and solid in almost all phases, there isn’t one glaring concern.
All You Really Need To Know About South Dakota State (28-6)
(Summit), RPI: 35. 12-seed
A feisty team led by a fantastic all-around playmaker in Mike Daum, the Jackrabbits are going to be a sleeper Cinderella. The team can shoot the lights out, hitting over 50% of their shots on the year helped by an amazing ability to hit the glass. Second in the nation in rebounds, there are no second shots allowed.
They don’t live by the three, but they can shoot from the outside when needed. They’re great at controlling the inside on both ends, with plenty of blocked shots, lots of easy baskets, and without a whole lot of turnovers and mistakes.
What’s Going To Happen
Ohio State is going to get really, really annoyed by the Jackrabbits on the boards and the threes coming at the other end.
It’s a good enough Buckeye team to survive – it’ll D up just enough from the outside to keep the Jackrabbits from bombing away – and it’ll hold up on the boards. The key will be to get inside and not let the South Dakota State rebounders end possessions in a hurry.
The Buckeyes were second in the Big Ten in rebounding margin – they’ll do their share on the glass, too. But they’ll be in for a nasty battle.
Fearless Prediction & Line
Ohio State 80, South Dakota State 75
Line: Ohio State -8, o/u: 147
ATS Confidence: 3
5: Watching games by Vegas pool working on fruity drink No. 3
1: Watching game online while doing TPS reports in your cubicle