Jurick and Michael Cobbins combined for 13 points and 16 rebounds, while South Florida's big-man trio of Kore White, Jordan Omogbehin and Zach LeDay failed to score and totaled five boards.
“I thought Jurick really patrolled the middle, handled the glass extremely well,” said Bulls coach Stan Heath. “Between him and Cobbins and the three guys we were playing at the five, that was a huge difference, the production we got and they got.”
Marcus Smart led the Cowboys with 15 points, while Brown added 13. South Florida, falling to 5-3, got 14 points from Victor Rudd and 12 from Anthony Collins.
An estimated 6,500 watched OSU improve to 6-1 in the first outing of a six-game home stretch. The largest crowd of the season, yet well under the capacity of 13,611, didn't restore the rowdy, despite a Wednesday Twitter campaign by Ford and his players, as well as $15 tickets.
Ford did go to the end of the court following the game, slapping hands with students and thanking them for a strong showing.
“I spent the last two days in the Student Union, passing out fliers,” Ford said. “So did Marcus Smart. So did Le'Bryan Nash. We did a lot of things the last few days to give fans, especially the students, an opportunity to get into this game. And I thought they responded very, very well.
“They were here early. They were loud. It wasn't the most exciting game to watch, but hopefully they enjoyed watching us win. Hopefully we continue to get more fans at the game.
“We're a Top 25 team at this point. We're 6-1. Hopefully, we can start packing this place out. I know it would help. No question it would help. We've got one of the best arenas in the country.”Box score: OSU 61, South Florida 49