The Big Ten-ACC Challenge kicks off this week, and there are plenty of great matchups scheduled. The Notre Dame Fighting Irish will host the Ohio State Buckeyes in one of these matchups in what should be a highly competitive game.
Entering Sunday, Ohio State is a perfect 3-0 to start the season, and they have yet to really be challenged. The Buckeyes are currently ranked in the Top 25, and Ohio State could make some noise in the Big Ten Conference race.
Notre Dame has played just one game so far this season as COVID-19 has really messed with their schedule. The Fighting Irish suffered an 80-70 loss to Michigan State earlier this season in a game that wasn’t really that close.
The betting lines are not yet out for this matchup, but the Ohio State Buckeyes will likely be small favorites in this matchup.
Buckeyes Have Depth
Ohio State has had a number of star players through the years, but that isn’t the way this current team operates. This Buckeyes squad is extremely deep, and they have the ability to wear down opponents with their depth.
Ohio State currently has four players averaging at least 11 points per game, led by Justice Sueing and his 15.0 points per game. Forward E.J. Liddell is largely considered the best player on this roster and he is averaging 14.3 points and 6.0 rebounds per game.
The Buckeyes are scoring almost 82 points per game, but they have yet to face a real tough opponent. Ohio State will be facing a tough defense for the first time this season, but they should have enough scoring options to find some offense in this game.
Ohio State is allowing just 58 points per game, and that defense should be able to keep the Buckeyes in this game if the offense is not clicking.
Irish Must Make Shots
The Fighting Irish are not nearly as deep as the Buckeyes and their starting lineup must find a way to carry the team. Notre Dame put up a fight against Michigan State in the season opener, but eventually ran out of offensive firepower.
Notre Dame made just eight three-pointers in the season opener, and the Fighting Irish will have to shoot much better in this game. Prentiss Hubb and Cormac Ryan combined for seven made three-pointers in that loss, and they could give the Irish a huge boost with another big performance in this matchup.
The Fighting Irish will also need to be better on the defensive end of the floor after giving up 80 points in a loss to the Michigan State Spartans. Notre Dame is not going to win many high-scoring games this season, and they need to keep this game in the 60’s or 70s.
Ohio State Cruises to Victory
Notre Dame has had a strange start to the 2020-21 college basketball season, and they are just looking to get games in. The Fighting Irish have already lost to a Big Ten opponent this season, and they will face a similar result in this matchup.
The Big Ten Conference is much better and deeper than the ACC this season, and this game is no exception. Ohio State will use their depth to wear down the Fighting Irish and pick up an impressive win on the road.
Notre Dame still has time to figure things out, but this will be the second loss to a Big Ten opponent in the first month of the season. Ohio State just has too much talent, and the Buckeyes will find a way to take control of this game and come away with the victory.