(23) Ohio State Buckeyes (-5, 133.5 o/u) at Penn State Nittany Lions
The No. 23 Ohio State Buckeyes (21-8, 10-6 Big Ten) play their last Big Ten road game of the season when they travel to the Bryce Jordan Center to meet the Penn State Nittany Lions (15-14, 3-13 Big Ten) tonight at 6:00 p.m. Eastern.
After losing to Michigan and Michigan State, the Buckeyes have bounced back with wins over Nebraska and Purdue. Their 65-61 win over the Boilermakers came with 28 points from freshman phenom D’Angelo Russell.
“This is the type of win that we have to get,” said Ohio State’s Sam Thompson, who added 14 points against Purdue. “It’s too late for us to be taking steps backward now. It’s our time to really hit our stride and really get going and put together a run.”
The back-to-back wins give the Buckeyes a chance of finishing third in the Big Ten, which would keep them on the opposite side of the draw as No. 6 Wisconsin in the conference tournament. However, they remain one game back of current third-place team Purdue with just two to play.
Tonight, the Buckeyes will meet a Penn State team that is having a season to forget. The Nittanies have lost seven of their last eight games, including five in a row. Their 81-77 OT loss to Iowa came right after scoring a season-low 39 points against Northwestern.
Penn State had a great shot to upset Iowa on the weekend. But, down one with 30 seconds left, D.J. Newbill turned the ball over on an in-bounds pass and the Hawkeyes were able to stretch the lead to three, never looking back.
“Some of the stuff that happens to us is amazing,” Penn State coach Patrick Chambers said after the loss. “I’ve never seen anything like it.”
These two programs already met earlier this season (February 11) when Ohio State picked up a 75-55 win at home. In the trends, Penn State is 2-19 SU in its last 21 against Ohio State, and 2-5 ATS the last seven of those. They are also a woeful 1-4 ATS in the last five home games against the Buckeyes.
Ohio State is a five point favorite for tonight’s game.
(Photo credit: Ben Stanfield (flickr) [https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/legalcode]. Photo has been cropped.)