It’s certainly going to be tough for the Ohio State basketball team to beat the undefeated Blues and come out on top on Tuesday night but there’s always a chance to shock. Ohio State is hosting the Blue Devils for the first time since 2011 when the ACC-Big Ten Challenge began. Ohio State hasn’t played Duke in nine years, since the top five at Cameron Indoor Stadium in 2012, which the Blues won 73-68.
Last season, Jared Sullinger and the Buckeyes took out the Blues 85-63 in Columbus. Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski is in the midst of his 42nd and final season before retiring with the most successful resume of any men’s basketball coach in NCAA history. Coach K has a good chance to add to his illustrious career, leading the No. 1 team in the country following an 84-81 win over Gonzaga last weekend.
Krzyzewski’s top-ranked team is led by the extremely talented freshman Paolo Banchero, who is predicted to be the top 5 pick in the 2022 NBA Draft. Banchero is averaging the team’s top 18.3 points and 7s respectively. ,6 rebounds per game with 53.4% shots from the field.
EJ Liddell isn’t as highly regarded as a potential client, but he’s almost as skilled in looks. The junior striker led Ohio State with 22.5 points and 6.2 rebounds per game over 42.1% from a 3-point range.
Liddell discussed how he prepared for Banchero and the highly anticipated game against Duke: “Just capture the little details, learn about Duke’s team, and get ready to go on the field. It’s probably the best team we’ll be playing with all season.
Everyone knows what a good player he is. I feel like he worked really hard to stay where he is. I just approach this game the way I approach people and that’s to go out on the pitch and give my best. “
Banchero is 2-3 inches taller than most Ohio State basketball frontlines including Liddell, which will likely cause problems for the Buckeyes around the perimeter. Duke also has a couple of dangerous wings with Trevor Keels and Wendell Moore (17.9 points, 5.7 assists) that will look to attack downhill and provide assists for the others, and a 7′ center. 1 can score and defend the belt with a high rate among sophomore Mark Williams. Jeremy Roach is expected to start at guard for Duke.
The Ohio State basketball team will need Justin Aherns, Zed Key and Kyle Young at their best, while freshmen Malachi Branham and Meechie Johnson make a positive impact. Based on ESPN, Buckeyes has a 55.9% chance to equalize despite being under 2.0 points at home. Duke may just have too much firepower and overwhelm Ohio State but the Buckeyes are experienced and can play in the second half.
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