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2007 National Championship Game Preview

No. 1 Ohio State v. No. 1 Florida

Game Time: 8:21 p.m. CST

Ohio State Players to Watch:

  • Greg Oden, C, 7-0, Fr., 15.6 Pts., 9.8 Reb., 0.7 Ast.
  • Ron Lewis, G, 6-4, Sr., 12.2 Pts., 3.5 Reb., 1.3 Ast.
  • Mike Conley, Jr., G, 6-1, Fr., 10.6 Pts., 3.3 Reb., 6.2 Ast.

Florida Players to Watch:

  • Al Horford, F-C, 6-10, Jr., 13.3 Pts. 9.3 Reb., 2.1 Ast.
  • Corey Brewer, F, 6-9, Jr., 13.1 Pts., 4.6 Reb., 3.1 Ast.
  • Taurean Green, G, 6-0, Jr., 13.0 Pts., 2.4 Reb., 3.7 Ast.

The Match Ups:

  • The Backcourts: This is where I think Florida has a clear advantage over the Buckeyes and the one player that I think turns the tide is Corey Brewer. I'd love to see Brewer on Conley defensively as I think a much taller player on Conley will give him fits all game and I'd love to see Donovan try this tactic. Humphries and Green have been solid the entire tournament as have Lewis and Butler. Despite the fact that Conley can be a game changing guard, I think with Brewer guarding Conley, this could really stop the Ohio State offense. Advantage: Florida.
  • The Frontcourts: I don't know how the Ohio State frontcourt is doing it. Oden is talented, but I just can't seem them matching up with the incredible size that Florida offers. Florida has 42 rebounds against UCLA, 17 of them from Horford. There's just too much for the Gators here. I think OSU dodged a bullet on Saturday night, as Oden picked up 2 early fouls. If this happens again, OSU is dunzo. Advantage: Florida.
  • The Benches: As I said on Thursday, both of these teams don't have much of a bench, but if forced to choose, I like the size that Florida brings with Richard. I don't see this being the deciding factor in tonight's championship, but I've been wrong before. Advantage: Florida.
  • The Coaches: I'm still trying to figure out how Matta got past the mighty Hoyas and I think he deserves a tremendous amount of credit for that victory alone. The game will be won here, with the coaches. Much of this game depends upon matchups. How will OSU deal with a 6-1 Conley guarding a 6-9 Brewer? How will OSU keep Florida off the boards? It will be incredibly interesting to see how Ohio State adjusts, but considering Donovan has done this before . . . Advantage: Florida.

DTN Pick: Florida.

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