The Ohio State Buckeyes (15-8, 5-7) host the Rutgers Scarlet Knights (17-7, 8-5) Wednesday night at Value City Arena for a 7:00 pm tip on the Big Ten Network. Rutgers has lost two of three, but did win 77-73 in overtime against Northwestern on Sunday. The Buckeyes have won three of four, but lost 70-57 at Wisconsin on Sunday. This is the only regular season meeting between these two teams.
Who: Rutgers at Ohio State
What: Men’s Basketball
Where: Columbus, OH — Value City Arena
When: Wednesday 7:00 pm (BTN)
Why: Because home games against Rutgers are always must-win.
Line: Ohio State -5.5
The Ohio State Buckeyes
+ Ohio State leads the all-time series with Rutgers 7-3. The Buckeyes are 4-0 in Columbus and 3-1 in Piscataway. The teams have met twice on neutral courts with the Scarlet Knights winning both. Andre Wesson has faced Rutgers six times, most on the Ohio State roster. He averages 2.8 points and just over two rebounds in the series. Kaleb Wesson averages 17.3 points and 6.3 rebounds in four meetings with the Scarlet Knights. Sophomore Luther Muhammad, a New Jersey native, averages 12.5 points and four rebounds in a pair of meetings vs. Rutgers.
+ The Buckeyes are 14-4 when leading or tied at the half this season. They are 1-4 when trailing at the half. Under Chris Holtmann, Ohio State is 7-22 when trailing at the half and 53-10 when leading or tied. The Buckeyes are 14-2 this season when leading with five minutes to play, and 1-6 when trailing. Ohio State is 14-5 when they have 15 or fewer turnovers and 5-7 when they have more turnovers than the opponent.
+ Ohio State is No. 4 nationally for the most home wins with a 173-32 (.844) record since the 2009-10 season. Maryland is the next-best Big Ten team at No. 11 with 162 wins. Going back to the 2008-09 season to the present, the Buckeyes also own the fourth-most home victories with 188 wins over 223 games (188-35). The Buckeyes also have played the eighth-most ranked teams in the country since 2005. Ohio State has played 149 (62 wins/12th) opponents ranked among the Associated Press Top 25 during that span.
Home Wins From 2009-10 to 2019-20 (as of 2/10/20)
Rk. Team Gms Ws Ls W %
1. Kentucky 190 180 10 .947
2. Kansas 184 174 10 .946
2. Louisville 204 174 30 .853
4. Ohio State 205 173 32 .844
The Rutgers Scarlet Knights
What You Need To Know
+ Rutgers plays its third game away from the RAC over four contests when it travels to the Arch City to meet Ohio State on Wednesday evening. The Scarlet Knights have an opportunity to earn their ninth conference win, which would signal RU’s most in league play since a 9-9 Big East mark in 1998-99. RU’s luck has been limited at Value City Arena in Big Ten play, dropping four games by an average of 18.25 points. Rutgers’ four league defeats away from the RAC since the new year this season have been by an average of 4.75 points.
+ On Sunday night, Rutgers earned its largest comeback victory in 24 years, battling back from 18 down, to defeat Northwestern at a sold-out RAC. Geo Baker scored a season high 25 points, as the Scarlet Knights improved their nation’s-best home record to 16-0. Twenty-three of Baker’s points were in the second half and in overtime. He shot 10-of-17, while also grabbing six rebounds and dishing-out five assists, with zero turnovers.
+ Rutgers has built a legacy of tough defense under head coach Steve Pikiell. After Pikiell inherited a team that ranked 236th the season prior in Ken Pom’s adjusted defense metric, he raised that number 166 spots the following season. RU has rated among the top-50 in the nation ever since. Currently, the program ranks 9th nationally in adjusted defense. Rutgers has the 2nd best scoring defense (61.4) and field goal percentage defense (38.0) in the Big Ten. Four of the six lowest ever field goal percentages versus Rutgers in Big Ten play have come this season.
+ Rutgers is 8th nationally in rebounding (41.17), 14th in FG% defense (38.0), 15th in rebound margin (+7.3), 16th in scoring defense (61.4), 31st in blocks (4.8) and 44th in scoring margin (9.2). Rutgers is undefeated when scoring 15 or more fast break points (9-0).
+ Myles Johnson is 20th nationally in offensive rebound percentage (15.1) and 25th nationally in FG% (.632). Akwasi Yeboah is one of 23 active NCAA players with 1,500 points and 600 rebounds. He ranks 50th in career points (1,561) and 56th in rebounds (678). Rutgers is a young squad, ranking 242nd in experience per Pomeroy.