OSU-SMU: Five Things
By John Helsley
Because it’s December and it’s still too soon to surrender on the season, OSU’s game against SMU tonight inAmericanAirlinesCenteris big.
Big enough even to call a must-win, if – if – the Cowboys still hold NCAA Tournament hopes.
Bottom line: The Pokes are better than SMU. They should win this game; not that just being better has assured anything this season. There hasn’t been a game yet in which you came away from a Cowboys win thinking they really looked good or produced a complete effort.
Still, let’s go on the assumption that OSU has the better players and should win. And forget theDallaslocale, this won’t be some sort of home-court advantage for SMU.
So it’s must-win.
Here are five things to watch:
1. The Point Plan. Keiton Page surely gets the nod at the point, a move necessitated by the failure of the other three guys to hold that spot – Fred Gulley, Reger Dowell and Cezar Guerrero. Of course, Gulley and Dowell have since left the program. Guerrero’s playing time figures to get a major bump. But it’s mostly about Page. And while a lot of folks have claimed this is what they’ve all been waiting for, it’s not ideal, for Page or the Pokes. Remember, Page was pushed to the point for a while last year. And it didn’t work out so well. Opponents pressured Page all the way up the floor, making him labor just to get the ball past midcourt. It wore him down on the offensive end, affecting his playmaking ability as well as his scoring ability.
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