The Buckeyes dominated No. 1 Michigan State, 80-64, to complete a 2-0 week and tie Purdue atop the Big Ten standings. They had won 14 consecutive games coming into Sunday, with their next matchup coming on Wednesday night when they host the Rutgers Scarlet Knights. He is 100-45 overall in 11 seasons at Michigan State.
"Our program has established itself", said Dantonio, who coached one of the youngest teams in the nation in 2017 with almost 80 underclassmen on the roster while finishing ranked in the polls for the seventh time in the past 10 years. The soon-to-be-top-ranked Wildcats did hold off Marquette at home, but they're not defending as well as previous Villanova teams have.
The win moves Ohio State to 13-4 on the season, while Michigan State falls to 15-2. That's not something this team is used to seeing, especially after assisting 30 times on 32 made field goals in a blowout of Maryland earlier in the week.
The Buckeyes erupted for 12 unanswered points in the last 1:14 of the first half to grab a 41-29 halftime lead.
"Don't go searching now", Izzo said.
Peyton Aldridge added 17 points for Davidson (8-8, 2-1 Atlantic-10) and KiShawn Pritchett and Kellan Grady had 15 points apiece.
With a young roster that isn't quite deep enough, there may be more leads blown in the second half the way the Buckeyes did against Butler and Clemson during the first month of the season.
"This is the way it's like in the Big Ten", Izzo said.
Moments after beating the No. 1 team in the Associated Press poll for the first time in 13 years, Ohio State's two best players fielded a simple question. "It's just because of the facilities and crowds and everything else".
It was the first time all season they had been overrun by adversity, and until the Spartans toughen up in road games, their wishes of winning a National Championship will stay just that.
UP NEXT: The Buckeyes play at IN on Saturday, while the Wolverines host IN on Wednesday night.
Last week's Big Ten Player of the Week, Ward entered the game having made 38 of 44 shots over a four-game stretch. Bates-Diop took advantage, scoring on a layup and a free throw after being fouled, giving the Buckeyes six points in one possession and extending the Ohio State lead to 49-31. While still tough, the teams in the middle of the pack present Holtmann's bunch a great shot at the NCAA Tournament.
With top freshman Billy Preston still ineligible and midseason addition Silvio De Sousa not yet ready to play, Kansas lacks any semblance of frontcourt depth behind Udoka Azubuike.
They'll need a similar effort to stick close to the Spartans. "We've just got to keep moving forward".
"We're a very good team". We had seven guys with 3.0's and four guys on the Dean's list. "We're a program that is trying to find our way here a little bit with a lot of new guys".
Ward's teammates agreed they didn't do a good job of getting him the ball.
"(Friday) was a good win. You can't go into a game against a team like Michigan State not believing that it's possible to win.
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