The stage was set for the Final Four in Atlanta. The last time the Final Four was held in Atlanta, the Buckeyes were playing for the national championship against the Florida Gators.
With the cancellation of March Madness due to the coronavirus, there won’t be a national champion crowned this season. However, according to a simulation by the Washington Post, the Buckeyes would have been the 2020 NCAA National Champions.
Here is how the simulation played out:
According to the simulation, teams that made the field were chosen from a compilation of data from 81 different bracketologists. Once the teams were chosen and seeded accordingly, the simulation began with an estimated number of possessions for each team.
Here are the primary stats factored into the simulation:
To make it simple, we’re going to start with an estimated number of possessions for each team using the definition outlined by Nylon Calculus, including any additional possessions to be had via offensive rebounds and turnovers. Then, estimated scores are derived by multiplying those respective possessions by the team’s adjusted offensive rating found at Ken Pomeroy’s site. Once we know the projected scoring margin, we can infer an implied win percentage. For instance, teams that are favored by two points would have an expected win probability of 57 percent. That rises to 77 percent if the predicted scoring margin is seven points. Finally, these win rates are then used to decide which team would win in a head-to-head matchup with luck factoring into the equation just like it does during March Madness.
To check out the other factors concerning the simulation check out the Washington Post.com link. Now for a look at how the Buckeyes’ journey was projected.
Ohio State was placed in the Midwest region as the No. 5 seed. With Kansas as the No. 1 seed, Creighton (No. 2), Michigan State (No. 3) and Oregon (No. 4), the Buckeyes were a heavy sleeper in this region.
Coach Holtmann’s team defeated No. 4 Oregon in the round of 32 and went on to beat No. 1 seed Kansas 72-65. After a 64-52 victory over the No. 3 seed Michigan State Spartans in the Elite Eight, the Buckeyes punched their ticket to the Final Four in Atlanta.
The Final Four in Atlanta hosted No. 5 Ohio State vs No. 1 Dayton from the Midwest and East regions as well as No. 1 Baylor vs No. 3 Maryland from the South and West regions. Despite a historic year for the Dayton Flyers, the Buckeyes defeated the Flyers 80-64 due to the Buckeyes stout defense down the stretch in the 2nd half.
Baylor defeated Maryland 72-58 after an outstanding offensive rebounding and defensive performance from the Bears.
The 2020 NCAA Men’s Basketball National Championship matchup was No. 5 Ohio State vs No. 1 Baylor. The Ohio State Buckeyes defeated the Baylor Bears 74-69 after shooting 54% from the field.
“One Shining Moment” was playing aloud in Mercedes-Benz Stadium as Chris Holtmann cut down the nets to win his 1st national championship and capture Ohio State’s 2nd national title in school history.
In addition to the simulation, Chris Holtmann will have a stellar team next season. With a year of experience under their belts, freshmen Gaffney and Liddell will be playmakers next season.
The combination of the young players with the veteran leaders in Kyle Young, Duane Washington Jr. and Luther Muhammad, this Buckeye team will be top contenders for the national title next season.