Defense keeps the Ohio State basketball team from winning yet again

The Ohio State basketball team has had issues with defense in Big Ten play. That continued again on Tuesday night in another defeat.

Feb 1, 2024; Columbus, Ohio, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes forward Jamison Battle (10) dribbles at
Feb 1, 2024; Columbus, Ohio, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes forward Jamison Battle (10) dribbles at / Adam Cairns/Columbus Dispatch / USA
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The Ohio State basketball team is on a slide that they can't seem to stop. The annual January slide seems to have hit a little harder this year than normal. On the last day of January, the Buckeyes lost yet again, falling to 14th-ranked Illinois by a score of 87-75.

With this loss, the Buckeyes finish the month of January with a disgusting 2-6 record and they have now lost three straight games. They still haven't won a road game in over 13 months, by the way. Poor defense has been the theme for them in the last three games.

In these three losses, the Ohio State basketball team has given up 83, 83, and 87 points. You won't win any games in the Big Ten giving up that many points no matter where the games are being played. Illinois shot almost 52% from the field in this latest game.

I don't know what to say any more about this team's defense. They constantly leave three-point shooters open. When teams do miss, they allow them to get the offensive rebound. Ohio State gave up 11 offensive boards against the Illini. That's simply unacceptable.

On offense, 75 points should be enough to win. But of course, the Buckeyes shot the ball poorly from three. They shot just 4/12 from deep. The Buckeyes have to make threes if they're going to allow so many points. It's the only way to equalize things. They just don't have the shooters to do it.

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Ohio State still doesn't have a signature win. Their NCAA Tournament hopes are on life support. I'm not sure they can win enough games coming down the stretch to make it. I have no hope that they are even going to win a single game on the road in the Big Ten.