By The Numbers: Big Ten Tournament

The Big Ten Men’s Basketball Tournament gets underway this week and the Buckeyes will not have to play on Wednesday by virtue of their win at Rutgers and other Sunday outcomes spitting out a second-round game against Iowa.

There were many who had written off Ohio State after the annual January swoon took place and a promising start to the season ended up leading to the dismissal of head coach Chris Holtmann.

But a funny thing happened after that move.

MORE: Learn more about Ohio State’s Big Ten Tourney Draw

The Buckeyes won five of their last six games of the season under interim head coach Jake Diebler and while Ohio State’s No. 10 seed marks just the fourth time that Ohio State has been a double-digit seed in the history of this event, there is hope around this basketball team.

No, nobody is quite sure what the Buckeyes would have to do to get into the NCAA field, short of winning the entire tournament and claiming the automatic berth that goes to the tourney champion. But could a couple of wins get the Buckeyes in and maybe into the first four in Dayton (Ohio)?

There is a lot of basketball left to be played to determine the ultimate fate of this team for the 2023-24 season.

But with renewed interest in Ohio State men’s basketball, let’s go “to the numbers” for the Big Ten Tourney with a few factoids you may not know off the top of your head.

0.37 – This is the winning percentage of the No. 10 seed in this tournament (we have not gone back to see if any games have been DQ’d, so forgive the math if it is a little bit off). That number is not overly impressive, but the No. 10 seed made it all the way to the finals in 2023 as Penn State knocked off three opponents en route to facing Purdue in the championship game of the 2023 tournament.

4 – This is the number of teams that have never been to the final game of the tournament. Three of the four teams (Nebraska, Rutgers, Maryland) were late ads to the event while one, Northwestern has played in every event and has failed to make it to Sunday, even once.

5 – That is how many championships the Buckeyes have in this event, regardless of what the NCAA and Big Ten say. 2002 may be taken off the board in the record books, but I was there, I saw the nets come down. 5 is also the number of runner-up runs the Buckeyes have had, the most in the conference. This means that Ohio State has been in the final game 10 times, more than any other program in the conference by a good margin (Michigan State and Illinois have each been to the finals seven times, each).

7 – Of the 14 teams in the current Big Ten, seven teams have cut down the nets at the end of the event. Of the seven teams, every single one of them have done this more than once. The winners are the usual suspects of Ohio State, Michigan State, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin, Iowa, and Purdue. The Boilermakers are the only team to win a championship that have an overall sub-.500 record in the event (.452).

10 – Ohio State has never been the No. 10 seed in the Big Ten Tournament. This only leaves the No. 4, No. 12 and No. 14 slots empty for the Buckeyes in terms of the seed lines. It does not appear that the Big Ten Tournament moving forward will include all 18 teams of the new Big Ten (adding USC, UCLA, Washington, and Oregon) so there may not be the need to add 15-18 as potential seed lines. The Buckeyes have been the No. 1 seed in this event five times, the highest number of any seed line in tournament history for the Buckeyes with Ohio State coming in as the No. 2 and No. 5 seed four times each.

11 – It may be for the best that Ohio State is not the No. 11 seed, as it was a killer for one coach in their debut in the event with Jim O’Brien’s 1998 team losing to No. 6 Indiana in the first year of the event. It has not been exactly smooth for every coach making their debut as both Thad Matta and Chris Holtmann each won one game before losing in their second game.

38 – The Buckeyes have 38 wins in Big Ten Tourney games. This again undoes what the NCAA and B1G have done with the removal of games over the course of several seasons. This number includes Ohio State’s three wins in the 2023 season when a No. 13 seed made it all the way to the semifinals. That run included wins over Wisconsin, Iowa and Michigan State before the Buckeyes fell to No. 1 seeded Purdue in the semis.

All-session tickets for the 27th edition of the tournament are available for purchase at the Target Center box office or online at Single session tickets will go on sale Monday at 12 p.m. CT.  All ticket purchases are subject to AXS and facility fees. For more information on this year’s tournament, visit the Big Ten Tournament Central page at

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