Not every road traveled in the NCAA Tournament to get to the Sweet 16 is identical. Despite being the better seed, the Ohio State Buckeyes had to battle it out pro-wrestling style just to get here. For the Arizona Wildcats, well, there journey has been far more of a leisurely stroll rather than curb-stomping potential victims on their way to this portion of the big dance.
However, both teams will have had several days off before they square off, so all the wear and tear on the players’ bodies should be gone by then.
What to Watch For
Does “goat” mean choke-artist. or greatest of all time? I think it is time to have a definitive meaning in the dictionary for how we are going to use the word going forward.
Aaron Craft almost became both definitions of the word in Ohio State’s third round game. As we have all seen by now, Craft first successfully used an abomination of a rule to (fairly) draw a charge. After that, Craft went all buzzer-beater on the nation. While he probably won’t be asked to duplicate his late game heroics, I am sure the Buckeyes are hoping for a better overall game.
Mark Lyons is having a tremendous NCAA Tournament so far. The senior is averaging 25 points per outing and has been an absolute revelation for Arizona. The Wildcats are going to need for Lyons’ hot hands to continue to make buckets as if they were going out of style.
If the good Ohio State team shows up, this won’t even be that close. Even I know the danger in looking past Arizona, but the Buckeyes are just a better team.
Ohio State 69 — Arizona 61
Joe is a Senior Writer for Rant Sports. Follow him on Twitter @JosephNardone