Men's Basketball

Two-Minute Drill: Chris Holtmann Previews Indiana

Chris Holtmann Ohio State Basketball Buckeyes

COLUMBUS — The Buckeyes are on the road again and are looking to snap their three-game losing streak at Indiana on Saturday.

Ohio State head coach Chris Holtmann met with the media on Friday to preview the game against the Hoosiers. Holtmann talked about Kyle Young, his teams’ offensive struggles, and Indiana’s road environment.

Here’s a summary of what was said.

Chris Holtmann

+ The Hoosiers are the biggest team in college basketball because of their length. They play with great pace especially at home.

+ Kyle Young will be a game-time decision. He was able to do a bit more on Thursday and move more but it’s too early to determine his status. He is more ready to plan than the other night. A lot of it has to do with the normal fatigue level you have when you get your appendix taken out. He has a really high pain threshold, so for him there is some pain but it’s more the fatigue. The other night he wanted to play but it was not in his best interest for the remainder of the season to go.

+ Kyle Young isn’t a double-figure scorer but he plays off others so well that he is slowing others to get shots. Sometimes when they play some of their lineups without Young they have had situations where guys weren’t patient enough. When they do have lulls when he is in the game, he does a lot. He isn’t the answer to all of their offensive issues but he helps.

+ Guys have to stay aggressive. Duane Washington Jr.’s  case is some of shot selection, Luther Muhammad and C.J. Walker maybe not as much but they need to stay confident and take good ones.

+ He thinks Alonzo Gaffney has played hard but he has a turnover issue. They need stuff from him and he thought he provided good energy but the turnovers have to be eliminated.

+ On Andre Wesson’s senior leadership, Holtmann said Wesson has been a bit more vocal and they have been asking that of him because this team needs it. He also has to provide some perspective.

+ “You are always evaluating what you’re doing, but you’re doing it when you’re 11-1 too. Just because things are going well you don’t stop evaluation. There’s always adjustments that have to be made.” But by a large he feels good about what they’re doing, they just have to execute it better.

+ They have and will talk about the road environment and the structure of the building at IU that creates the noise as well as the tradition and the fan-base there. They will prepare their guys for that. Hopefully their previous road games will help.

+ “There’s no question that when you go through a stretch like this with young people that they’re feeling it. They are. I’m sure it’s affecting them. The reality is that there’s no way to get the feeling better than by playing good basketball.”

+ They have to stay true to who they are in playing really hard. They have played consistently pretty hard, but Holtmann said he always wants more as a coach.

+ Kyle Young is antsy to get back. He’s fully engaged in every meeting, and on the bench, and in everything they’re doing. That’s not always the case when guys are injured and that speaks to who he is. Last year he shed a tear or two in the practice gym when he couldn’t play because of his leg.

+ “We’ve got some tough kids.”

+ Indiana is a highly motivated group. “We’ve had some really close games with them in Bloomington that have kind of bounced our way. CJ Jackson made some clutch plays in both games actually.”

+ The guards just need experience. It comes through trial and error and experience.

+ When they are not shooting well the emphasis has been on getting Kaleb Wesson the ball more. He has to continue to be him, continue being an anchor on offense and defense. Continuing film work with him will help with fouls. He’s growing in that area but it’s a game-by-game challenge.

+ On E.J. Liddell, Holtmann said his motor and physicality has to improve. He has to understand that he can impact the game in ways other than his offense. He has a great approach, just some freshman stuff he has to work through.

+ He thought his team has practiced hard this week.

You can watch the full video below.

Posted by The Ozone on Friday, January 10, 2020