Indiana did it again. Three weeks after upsetting No. 1 Kentucky, the Hoosiers took down No. 2 Ohio State.
Victor Oladipo scored the go-ahead basket with 36 seconds left Saturday and Jordan Hulls finished with 17 points, giving the No. 13 Hoosiers a 74-70 victory, and the school’s first-ever sweep of the nation’s top two teams.
”They’ve been punking us the past couple years and we realized that,” Oladipo said. ”This year we had to go toe-to-toe with them.”
The Hoosiers (13-1, 1-1 Big Ten) didn’t back down.
Indiana became the ninth team since 1996-97 to beat No. 1 and No. 2 in the same season and joined Kansas in 2007-08 and Louisville in 2003-04 as the only teams over that span to achieve the feat in the same month. Against Kentucky, the Hoosiers needed a buzzer-beating 3-pointer from Christian Watford to win it.
On Saturday, the Hoosiers needed Oladipo’s layup, three free throws from Hulls and Watford, a rebound from Watford and a steal from Oladipo in the final 36 seconds to seal it.
Ohio State (13-2, 1-1) was led by Aaron Craft with 16 points and Jared Sullinger with 15 points and nine rebounds, but it wasn’t enough to extend their five-game winning streak or the school record six-game winning streak against the Hoosiers.
The Buckeyes spent most of the day buried in foul trouble, and never could quite dig themselves out.
They squandered an early 19-9 lead, watching the Hoosiers close the half by converting back-to-back turnovers into easy baskets. That gave Indiana a 33-32 lead.
It was the same story in the second half.
Ohio State looked as if it might pull away after taking a 44-41 lead with 15:33 left, but the continual foul problems allowed Indiana to hang around.
The Buckeyes took a 68-67 lead when Sullinger made the basket, drew the fifth foul on Cody Zeller and then capped it with a free throw.
Jones answered with a layup to make it 69-68 and then Ohio State’s Deshaun Thomas made a 15-foot jumper to give the Buckeyes a one-point lead with 1:51 to go.
That’s how it stayed until Hulls forced a turnover with a deflection, and Jones tossed the ball up the court to Oladipo for a layup and a 71-70 lead with 36 seconds left.
Ohio State called its final timeout to set up a play, but Craft’s bounce pass went through the hands of Sam Thompson. Hulls made 1 of 2 free throws after getting fouled.
William Buford’s 3-pointer would have given Ohio State the lead again with about 5 seconds to go, but Watford grabbed the errant shot and made two free throws to seal it.