5. Ohio State (12-3, 2-2)
Chris Holtmann’s tenure in Columbus hasn’t exactly gone according to plan. He’s won a lot of games with the Buckeyes and made four straight trips to the Big Dance. However, Ohio State has fallen shy of the Sweet Sixteen in each of those trips and finished below .500 last season. The Buckeyes’ offense has been very efficient in recent seasons and that continues this year, but what exactly can this team prove?
After losing a tough game at home to Texas A&M very early in the season, Ohio State got an impressive victory against Alabama to prove their resolve. They haven’t exactly had a chance to stockpile great wins, though they also took down UCLA and West Virginia in the back half of nonconference play. In Big Ten play, they’ve won at home and lost on the road, falling most recently to a tough Indiana squad at Assembly Hall.
The metrics like what the Buckeyes have done this season and they have to be pleased in general with what they’ve gotten from Jamison Battle, Bruce Thornton, and company through two months. Clearly the Buckeyes are going to need to learn how to win road games. If they can’t do that, then you can expect them to slide down these conference rankings, especially since those great offensive performances are looking further in the rearview.