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Scouting the South Region: Top-10 Opposing Players to Watch

Here's a look at some of the top standouts that could ultimately stand between Ohio State and a trip to the Final Four.

The No. 2 seeded Ohio State men's basketball team will be looking to maneuver through the South Region and advance to the NCAA Final Four over the next couple weeks. If the Buckeyes are to remain alive in the "Big Dance," here are some of the top opposing players that could be standing in their way.

Now, obviously, the Bucks won't have to face ALL of these standouts... but will certainly have to overcome a handful if they want to be playing inside Lucas Oil Stadium the first week of April.

1. Jared Butler (Baylor)

The standout guard, who averages 17 points in under 30 minutes per game, is the first AP All-America first team honoree in program history. He led the Big 12 in steals and three-point shooting. A potential Most Outstanding Player in this bracket.


2. Moses Moody (Arkansas)

The surefire NBA lottery pick spearheads a fast-paced attack for the Razorbacks, averaging 17 points and six rebounds for the No. 3 seed. He’s scored exactly 28 points in three of his last four games, only allowing Arkansas to lose just one game since the beginning of February.


3. Trevion Williams (Purdue)

Buckeye fans are all-too-familiar with the Boilermaker big man, who nearly beat Ohio State single-handedly down the stretch of that wild Big Ten Tournament affair. He finished with 26 and 14 in that slugfest, and is capable of doing that to other teams in this region.

Ohio State vs. Oral Roberts NCAA First Round Game Preview

4. Davion Mitchell (Baylor)

This junior point guard is the Big 12’s Defensive Player of the Year and ignites the Baylor attack, contributing more than 14 points, five assists and two steals per outing. A third team All-American, he can wreak havoc across all 94 feet and change the momentum of a game.

5. Neemias Queta (Utah State)

The 7-footer from Portugal plays massive. He averages a double-double, ranks top-five nationally in the category, and is just the second NCAA player over the past 30 years to post more than 14.5 points, 9.5 rebounds, 3.0 blocks, 2.5 assists and 1.0 steals per game (Bo Outlaw). Queta is also one of 10 finalists for Naismith Defensive Player of the Year, and will cause real problems for any opponent.


6. Max Abmas (Oral Roberts)

As we referenced earlier this week, he leads NCAA Division I with a healthy 24.2 points per game and might not come off the floor against Ohio State (averages over 36 minutes). He shoots 43 percent from long range and makes 90 percent of his free throws.

7. Mac McClung (Texas Tech)

Oftentimes this season, the Red Raiders have gone about the same as this Georgetown transfer has played. The fiery lead guard was first team All-Big 12, leads the team in scoring, and seems to make shots when they matter most. He dropped 30 at West Virginia back in late January.

8. MaCio Teague (Baylor)

Another Bear on this list, but rightfully so as his leadership has the team primed for a Final Four run. The senior from Cincinnati is averaging 24 ppg since the first week of March, and his 10 three-pointers in a game recently. He keeps Baylor together in crunch time.


9. Chandler Vaudrin (Winthrop)

The savvy left-hander, another Ohio native, transferred from D2 Walsh University and is now doing it all for the Eagles. He averages 12-7-7, including THREE triple-doubles this season, and has Winthrop boasting a 23-1 record. They cruised through the Big South Tournament and will be an interesting No. 12 seed.

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10. Jeremiah Robinson-Earl (Villanova)

A versatile 6-foot-9 swingman, he averages roughly 16 points and eight rebounds for Jay Wright’s capable bunch. The Wildcats recently lost standout guard Collin Gillespie, but can certainly catch steam in this tournament behind Robinson-Earl. He’s scored 25-plus four times this season and also has a pair of games with more than 15 rebounds.

BONUS: Tre Mann (Florida) / Keve Aluma (Virginia Tech)

Both of these guys will pace their teams in what appears to be a very competitive 7-10 opening-round game. The winner could play Ohio State in the second round, so the Buckeyes will need to be aware of whichever guy advances. He could have his team as a live dog against the Buckeyes.


Honorable Mention:

Terrence Shannon Jr. (Texas Tech)
D’Mitrick Trice (Wisconsin)
Javion Hamlet (North Texas)
Jordan Burns (Colgate)
Armando Bacot (North Carolina)


You may also like:

How to Watch Ohio State vs. Oral Roberts in Opening Round

Scouting Oral Roberts Ahead of the NCAA Tournament

Holtmann, Washington Jr. Preview First Round Game vs. Oral Roberts

Buckeyes Play Oral Roberts Friday at Mackey Arena

WATCH: Chris Holtmann Reacts to Ohio State's Big Ten Championship Loss


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