Ohio St. Buckeyes vs. Florida Gators
The number eight Florida Gators clash with the number three Ohio State Buckeyes in an early season match up of top ten teams. The Gators opened the year with a 99-59 rout of Jackson State while the Buckeyes easily handled Wright State 73-42. The Buckeyes are -10.5 favorites over the Gators with an over/under point total set at 135.5.
Florida scored early and often and never took their foot off the gas pedal in the rout of Jackson State. The Gators had too many quality bodies to throw at the Tigers who weren’t nearly big enough to compete with the Gators size and strength. Kenny Boynton and Mike Rosario each scored 19 points apiece on combined 14 of 25 shooting, including 9 of 15 from long range to lead five players in the double digit scoring column. Nine of the eleven players that saw floor time made at least half of their shots leading to a 51.3% shooting performance. Jackson State couldn’t match that with only 34% accuracy and couldn’t compete on the boards either with UF having their way on the glass 44-29 with 24 offensive rebounds. The Gators managed a 24-10 margin in the turnover department leading to 29 more shot opportunities.
Ohio State started off slow against Wright State before finding their groove and rolling to an easy win. The Buckeyes had way too many athletes for the Raiders to deal with and this isn’t the same Wright State we saw a year ago with several new faces. As expected Jared Sullinger was the best player on the floor and bulled his way to a game high 19 points on 4 of 7 shooting while hauling down nine rebounds. William Buford and Aaron Craft added 13 points and ten points respectively to round out the top contributors. However, the Buckeyes received points from ten of the eleven players that saw minutes. Even though Ohio State hit just 44.7% from the field it wasn’t their offense that stood out as their defense was the difference maker with Wright State hitting at only 31.7% with the Buckeyes totaling ten steals and forcing 25 turnovers.
Florida will be throwing plenty of bodies at Ohio State and their ability to put the ball in the basket will be challenged by one of the better defensive squads in the country. I don’t think the Buckeyes can run and gun with the Gators and don’t think they’ll need to. Ohio State wins this but the points seem high if UF is truly a top ten team.
Florida Gators +10.5 Ohio St. Buckeyes