With two weeks left in the regular season, time is running out for the Ohio State basketball team (15-10, 5-7 Big Ten) to bolster its NCAA Tournament resume.
But if ever there was a time for the Buckeyes to make a run at returning to the Big Dance, the time is now.
Following wins over Michigan and Rutgers in the past week, Ohio State will head to College Park, Md., on Saturday for a matchup with No. 21 Maryland (20-4, 8-3 Big Ten). And although the Terrapins currently sit in third place in the conference standings, they enter Saturday’s showdown with the Buckeyes riding a two-game losing streak.
Will Ohio State finally strengthen its resume with a signature victory? We’ll find out on Saturday.
Here’s all you need to know to tune into Saturday’s Big Ten battle:
Ohio State basketball at Maryland game time, details
Date: Saturday, Feb. 11
Time: 4 p.m. ET
Location: Xfinity Center, College Park, Md.
The line: Maryland is a 7.5-point favorite, per VegasInsider.com.
Which TV channel broadcasts Ohio State basketball vs. Maryland?
Ohio State vs. Maryland will be televised on ESPN.
How can I watch Ohio State basketball vs. Maryland online?
WatchESPN will provide live streaming of the game. Click here to watch.
How can I listen to Ohio State basketball vs. Maryland on the radio?
For Ohio State, 97.1 FM in Columbus is the flagship station. Paul Keels will handle the play-by-play duties. Click here for a list of Ohio State radio affiliates. The game will be broadcast on Sirius/XM 84 satellite radio. Click here for a list of Maryland radio affiliates.
Who is calling the game for ESPN?
Dave Flemming (play-by-play) Dan Dakich (analysis) and Molly McGrath (sidelines) will be on the call for ESPN.
Ohio State basketball vs. Maryland keys to the game
Keep Kam cooking
In the Buckeyes’ 70-64 victory over Rutgers on Wednesday, guard Kam Williams came through in the clutch, scoring a career-high 23 points, including a four-point play that would prove to be the difference in the game.
A native of Baltimore, Williams will now look to carry his momentum over into his de facto homecoming, where he’ll square off with a national player of the year candidate in Melo Trimble.
With guard JaQuan Lyle still hampered with an ankle injury, Ohio State will continue to need all the firepower it can get. Williams is plenty capable of providing just that and will now attempt to do so in front of more friends and family than the junior guard is used to playing in front of in Columbus.
Make ’em count
On the season, Ohio State ranks 229th in the country in free throw percentage, having made just 68.3 percent of its free throw attempts. Given the close nature of most Big Ten games, it’s no surprise the Buckeyes’ inconsistent free throw shooting has often come back to bite them.
But in its past two contests, Ohio State has shown a newfound shooting stroke from the charity stripe. Against the Wolverines, the Buckeyes made 24 of their 28 attempts, before shooting 19 for 25 against the Scarlet Knights.
It’s no coincidence that Ohio State won both games. Now the Buckeyes will hope to replicate that success on the road against a team it just played — and lost to by six points — less than two weeks ago.
Keep feeding Trevor
Scoring 15 points and pulling down 13 rebounds, Trevor Thompson recorded his ninth double-double of the season on Wednesday as the Buckeyes’ center has emerged as one of the Big Ten’s best big men. In fact, the last time Thompson failed to record a double-double came against the Terrapins, as he scored nine points and recorded nine rebounds in Ohio State’s matchup with Maryland of Jan. 31.
Facing a team without a player who averages more than 6.4 rebounds per game, the opportunities should once again be there for Thompson to have a big day. But the Buckeyes will need to find him in the paint on a more consistent basis than they did in their last game with the Terrapins, when the 7-foot center attempted just two free throws.