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(4) Ohio State (4-0) at (2) Duke (6-0)



Wednesday, November 28, 9:30 p.m. (et)

The Sports Network

By Scott Haynes, College Basketball Senior Editor

FACTS & STATS: Site: Cameron Indoor Stadium (9,314) -- Durham, North Carolina. Television: ESPN. Home Record: Ohio St. 2-0, Duke 2-0. Away Record: Ohio St. 0-0, Duke 0-0. Neutral Record: Ohio St. 2-0, Duke 4-0. Conference Record: Ohio St. 0-0, Duke 0-0. Series Record: Series is tied, 3-3.

GAME NOTES: Top-five foes take the court at Cameron Indoor Stadium on Wednesday evening, as the fourth-ranked Ohio State Buckeyes take on the second-ranked Duke Blue Devils as part of the ACC/Big Ten Challenge.

Mike Krzyzewski's Blue Devils have certainly embarked on a challenging start to their season, winning all six of their games, including clashes with a air of top-five foes at the time in victories over defending national champion Kentucky (75-68) and most recently, topping Louisville to claim the Battle 4 Atlantis crown last weekend.

Thad Matta's Buckeyes have won all their games on the docket as well, including winning the Hall of Fame Tip-Off Classic. Most recently, Ohio State moved to 4-0 with last Friday's rout of UMKC (91-45).

These two teams are meeting for the seventh time. Ohio State tied the series up at 3-3 with last year's 85-63 lopsided win in Columbus as part of the ACC/Big Ten Challenge.

The Buckeyes were able to empty the bench for much of the second half, as they cruised to a 46-point romp over UMKC. Deshaun Thomas led the team with 21 points and eight rebounds in the win. Four others finished in double figures as well, as Lenzelle Smith Jr. added 13 points to the cause, followed by Sam Thompson (11 pts), LaQuinton Ross (11 pts) and Shannon Scott (10 pts), who matched his scoring output with a game-high 10 assists. Ohio State shot a blistering .608 from the floor in the game, including .563 from behind the arc (9-of-16).

Ohio State has really excelled at both ends of the floor and as a result, enjoys a gaudy +22.5 scoring margin, averaging 79.8 ppg, while allowing just 57.2. In addition, OSU holds a +6.5 rebounding margin and is forcing 14.5 turnovers per game. Thomas has played lights out in the early going, converting 54 percent from the floor overall, 48 percent from 3-point range (12-of-25) and putting up 24.0 ppg. Aaron Craft runs the offense and is both a scorer (14.3 ppg) and deft distributor (5.2 apg). Smith rounds out the top scoring threats with 11.5 ppg.

The Blue Devils held a 23-9 scoring advantage at the free-throw line, a key in the team's five-point win over the Cardinals in the Bahamas. All five starters notched double figures in the win, led by Mason Plumlee's 16 points. Quinn Cook was right behind with 15 points, while Ryan Kelly, Rasheed Sulaimon and Seth Curry all added 14 points in the win.

Duke has been efficient at both ends of the floor as well, although its scoring margin (+13.2) isn't quite as eye-popping at Ohio State. However, the competition has been far stiffer. The Blue Devils are still averaging just under 80 points per game (78.2), while shooting .474 from the field. Mason Plumlee has become one of the ACC's top interior players. The 6-foot-10 senior is converting an impressive 67.2 percent of his shots, averaging a double- double with team-highs of 19.7 points and 10.0 rebounds per game. Seth Curry adds the perimeter balance at 17.0 ppg, while Sulaimon (12.0 ppg), Kelly (11.8 ppg) and Cook (10.7 ppg) provide more than enough firepower in support.

The Blue Devils are playing their third Final Four participant from last year and the season is only a couple of weeks old. Duke already looks to be in mid- season form and getting this one in Durham, with a bit of revenge following last season's debacle in Columbus, tips the scales in the home team's favor.

Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Duke 74, Ohio State 70

11/28 10:37:42 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
DUR 8
GWI 6
 
5:05pm Tonight
DUR
GWI
 
Final
PHI 1
ATL 0
Final
BAL 5
BOS 7
Final
NYY 6
NYM 1
Final
DET 1
CLE 13
Final
CIN 3
CHC 7
Final
TAM 12
TOR 3
Final
MIA 3
WAS 2
9th
CWS 2
KAN 2
 
Final
MIL 0
STL 3
Final
COL 6
SFG 4
Final
ARI 1
PIT 4
Final
OAK 4
HOU 5
Final
ANA 3
TEX 2
Final
SDP 0
LOS 3
Final
SEA 2
MIN 0
1:08pm Today
DET
CLE
 
1:10pm Today
CIN
CHC
 
2:10pm Today
CWS
KAN
 
4:05pm Today
OAK
HOU
 
4:05pm Today
NYY
NYM
 
4:10pm Today
MIA
WAS
 
6:10pm Tonight
TAM
TOR
 
7:05pm Tonight
PHI
ATL
 
7:05pm Tonight
BAL
BOS
 
7:10pm Tonight
MIL
STL
 
8:10pm Tonight
ARI
PIT
 
8:10pm Tonight
COL
SFG
 
8:40pm Tonight
SDP
LOS
 
9:05pm Tonight
ANA
TEX
 
9:10pm Tonight
SEA
MIN
 
Final
DAL 128
HOU 130
Final
WAS 106
TOR 99
Final
SAN 100
LAC 73
3:00pm Today
BRK
ATL
 
5:30pm Tonight
MIL
CHI
 
8:00pm Tonight
NOP
GSW
 
10:30pm Tonight
POR
MEM
 
Final
MON 1
OTT 5
Final
NYR 2
PIT 1
Final
STL 1
MIN 4
3:00pm Today
NYI
WAS
 
6:00pm Tonight
TAM
DET
 
8:00pm Tonight
CHI
NAS
 
9:00pm Tonight
CAL
VAN
 
Final
DUR 8
GWI 6
 
5:05pm Tonight
DUR
GWI