Location: Columbus, Ohio
Conference: Big Ten
Coach: Thad Matta
Kenpom ranking: 20
Good wins (Kenpom ranking): Maryland (33), Purdue (46), Indiana (55)
Bad losses (Kenpom ranking): Michigan (76)
Tournament appearances: 26
Best result: National Champions, 1960
NBA alumni: Jared Sullinger, Jerry Lucas, Jim Jackson
Best name: Kieta Bates-Diop
Famous alumni: Rutherford B. Hayes, Jesse Owens, Jack Nicklaus
Most non-Ohio State fans reveled in the Buckeyes' first-round upset at the hands of Dayton last year. To those fans, let us assure you: Freshman guard D'Angelo Russell is literally one billion times more enjoyable to watch than graduated point guard Aaron Craft was last year. The Buckeyes went a dismal 2-7 vs. tourney teams, but only lost one game to a team that didn't make it. (It was Michigan, which is even worse for Buckeye fans.)
Style of play: They're hot and they're cold
The Buckeyes are simultaneously fast and slow. With Russell's speed, passing, and finishing -- and senior wing Sam Thompson's dunking -- the Bucks love to get out in transition, averaging 16.2 seconds per offensive possession, 14th fastest in college hoops. But that athleticism also helps OSU hound opponents on the other side of the ball -- opponents average 19.9 seconds per offensive possession, 11th-slowest in college hoops.
Key player: Russdiculous (Apologies to Russ Smith)
D'Angelo Russell came into OSU as a very well regarded freshman, but quickly made it clear he wasn't just great, but elite, a surefire top 5 pick in next year's draft. A 6'5 guard, Russell's naturally smooth game combines the highlight-worthy -- filthy crossover dribbles, these unbelievable spin passes he throws -- with difficult things he makes look routine -- a quality jumper, floaters.