No. 17 Ohio State lost its fourth consecutive game on Monday night as the Buckeyes fell on the road to Nebraska, 68-62.
The Cornhuskers hadn’t beaten Ohio State since 1985, and in front of a packed home crowd, they held off the Buckeyes by limiting turnovers and playing very good defense.
Although Nebraska had 17 turnovers, they held off on major turnovers in the first half — and down the stretch — and held Ohio State to 39 percent shooting from the field and 28 percent shooting from the three-point line.
Tim Miles’ decision to go with a small lineup to help matchup with Ohio State was another crucial decision. The Cornhuskers were able to defend Ohio State by going small, while also being quicker on the offensive end with more ball handlers.
Shavon Shields and Terran Petteway both led Nebraska with 18 points while Deverell Biggs added 11 points.
It didn’t help that the Buckeyes couldn’t find a go-to scorer. Aaron Craft led the Ohio State with 12 points as LaQuinton Ross (11 points) and Lenzelle Smith (10 points) both struggled hit shots from the field.
Ohio State has lost four straight games — three of which were on the road — and are clearly in a freefall as Big Ten play is underway. The Buckeyes are now 2-4 in the Big Ten and it won’t get much easier from here. Can Ohio State find a reliable scoring threat?
Colorado sophomore forward Tory Miller has been reprimanded by the Pac-12 and he also apologized for biting Air Force’s Hayden Graham earlier this week.
During Colorado’s win over Air Force on Wednesday, Miller was assessed a Flagrant 2 Dead Ball Technical Foul and ejected with 12:25 left in the second half after biting Graham during a loose ball.
In a release from the Pac-12, they announced reprimanding Miller, but he will not be suspended.
“All of our student-athletes must adhere to the Pac-12’s Standards of Conduct and Sportsman-ship,” Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott said in the release. “Regardless of Mr. Miller’s frustration and emotion, such behavior is unacceptable and he is being appropriately reprimanded.”
Miller also released his apology in the same release.
“I would like to apologize for my actions during the Air Force game. I would like to apologize to Hayden Graham, Air Force, my teammates and fans. It was a heat of the moment thing. I’m an emotional player, but I let my emotions get the best of me. I will use this as a learning experience and focus on helping my teammates and respecting my opponents for the rest of the season and beyond,” Miller said.
For Miller to not be suspended for this is good news for him and Colorado since he won’t miss any additional action, but did the Pac-12 make the right decision on this?
Michigan State has climbed on the back of star senior wing Denzel Valentine early in the season but they’ll undoubtedly need more help as the season goes on if they want to sustain their current top-5 ranking. One of the keys to the Spartans could be the on-going health of sophomore point guard Lourawls ‘Tum Tum’ Nairn, who is battling a foot injury.
According to a report from Kyle Austin of MLive.com, Nairn has been putting on a protective boot the last few months to help battle plantar fasciitis as the guard has been playing in practices and hasn’t had his minutes reduced in games.
The injury looked like it was hurting Nairn’s early-season play, but he’s been very good in two games at the Wooden Legacy in California this week, so it could be that he’s getting more used to playing through the pain of the injury.
If Nairn is healthy and capable of contributing, he’s a huge boost to Michigan State because he’s one of the fastest players in college basketball and an additional ball handler on the floor. Through six games so far this season, Nairn is averaging 5.3 points and 4.7 assists per game as he’s been one of the team’s best distributors.
Plantar fasciitis can be a tough injury to fight through, so we’ll have to see if this affects Nairn as the season goes along.