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Five Thoughts On The Tennessee Game




The Cowboys responded in a big way from their squeaker yesterday, hammering Tennessee 62-45. They crashed the boards harder than they have since the SMU game last season (+10 margin today, +12 against SMU last season) and it paid off. Here are five other thoughts about the game…

1. The addition of Jurick to the starting lineup (with JPO out) was fascinating. He helped out on the boards a little bit (fewest rebounds of any starter) but scored six points and was just generally…useful.

Often I think of Jurick as just somebody who gets in the way but OSU really used him as an axis point for its offense today even though he only took four shots. I’m not sure that’s how we want to run things going forward, but it’s definitely something to keep tabs on.

2. Call it the Marcus Smart effect, call it whatever you want, but this team does seems to do a really good job of drawing fouls. That matters because if you can get into another team’s bench the shots become easier, the boards more abundant, and the game opens up significantly. OSU needs games to open up significantly.

3. I love seeing that Tennessee only had 11 turnovers. That means OSU was playing terrific defense (Vols shot 26%) and sealing off the offensive rebounds (Vols – 8, Akron – 18). It helps when your point guard thinks he plays all five positions.

4. Speaking of Mr. Smart, how about this stat? OSU players played 291 basketball games last season, only 12 times did somebody grab more boards than our starting point guard grabbed today (9). All hail Marcus.

5. Ford said after the game that his squad was motivated by what former players were saying on Twitter. I…uh….don’t know what to think about this. On one hand — we played great! On the other — you’re telling me that the thing holding a team that hasn’t made the dance in like 900 days is what various alumni think about the way they play?

If that’s case then you’re probably not fostering a professional environment around them. I’d like to think we’re better than that.

Next game is Sunday at 5:30 on ESPN2 against North Carolina State.

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