NCAA: Championship Game: Quick Recap

April 2nd, 2007

Florida 84, Ohio State 75
My three keys going into the game:

1. Can Greg Oden avoid foul trouble?

What happened? Oden pretty much single-handedly kept the Buckeyes in the game when it seemed like each second half three hit by the Gators would break this game wide open. Oden went for 25 and 12 on this night, playing thirty-eight of the forty minutes. Foul trouble was more of an issue for classmate Mike Conley Jr., who sat out a large portion of the first half due to two fouls.

2. Will Taurean Green play better than he did on Saturday night?

What happened? Two nights after the Gators seemed to win in spite of the junior point guard, Green bounced back with sixteen points and six assists. Yes he had six turnovers as well, but he did enough to make sure that the gap between he and Conley Jr. wasn’t as large as it seemed heading into tonight’s game. His play wasn’t overwhelming, but once again Green did enough to make sure the Gators ended up in the winner’s circle.

3. How much of a factor will the Gators’ experience be?

What happened? The experience factor was best seen in two areas: Ohio State playing tentative on the offensive end, and some key defensive lapses in regards to the three-point shot. The Buckeyes, one of the nation’s best perimeter shooting teams, went a frigid 4-for-23 from behind the arc with the majority of their attempts coming under pressure. On the other end of the floor, Lee Humphrey and Corey Brewer were able to knock down long range shots when left open by sagging defenders. Florida, able to look to a variety of options all season long, didn’t panic when their main options (Noah and Horford inside) were limited by Ohio State.

Three Difference-Makers

1. Second half daggers from behind the arc by Corey Brewer and Lee Humphrey.
2. Three pointers: Ohio State- 4-for-23, Florida 10-for-18
3. Combined shooting for Ron Lewis, Jamar Butler and Ivan Harris: 9-for-28.