Key to the game: OSU handles Florida pressure
With the game tight midway through the second half, OSU went on a big run to pull away from the Gators. They did this by easily handling the full court pressure and giving Jared Sullinger dunk after dunk.
They broke the press both by the dribble and with the pass. Let’s take a look at how it all happened.
By the dribble
It was clear that Florida’s guards could not keep up with OSU’s guard, even when they were dribbling. This made breaking the press easy, as Florida was not trapping very often out of the press and once the initial defender was beaten, OSU had a big advantage.
Here is David Lighty getting by Chandler Parsons in the backcourt. Once he does this, he quickly gets the ball to the most dangerous spot on the court, the middle of the floor. Once he does this, he already has three Florida defenders beat.
Lighty gets the ball to the middle of the lane and continues driving until he meets resistance. However, this defender had to leave Jared Sullinger open in the key.
Lighty stops his drive once he sees the Florida defender stepping up and does not get a charging foul called. He dumps the ball off to Sullinger, who is wide open for the dunk. If the wing man would have stepped in, Jon Diebler was wide open for a three. It has to say something about Florida’s guards, when they could not keep up with David Lighty, who was dribbling the ball the whole way down the court.
Once Lighty beat the initial defender off the dribble, it was a matter of time before OSU scored. The press failed in slowing the offense down and was not even in the position to cause a turnover here.
Kenny Boynton gives Aaron Craft some trouble in the backcourt here but once again, we see the OSU player get the Florida defender on their hip solely through the dribble. Craft also gets the ball to the middle of the court, opening up all the options as well. Once he beats Boynton, he penetrates into the paint and draws the defense.
Once that happens, it is just matter of reading the defense and seeing the open man. In this play, it is Jon Diebler on the wing, who knocks down the open 3.
By the pass
OSU was effective in breaking the pass through the use of the pass as well. While beating defenders off the dribble is fine, it is more effective (and less work) to use the pass.
Parsons is doing a good job of denying the inbounds pass in this clip. Once he does not get the five second count, he is in trouble as he does not see his man start to sprint upcourt.
William Buford gets the ball and noticing Parsons back is turned and a few steps away, sprints upcourt. Parsons sees him too late and by the time he can catch up, Buford is gone. What made this play is Diebler catching the ball facing away from upcourt, composing himself, pivoting toward the middle of the court and being in position to see Buford streaking up the sideline.
OSU again gets the ball to the middle of the court and as we have seen, good things happen. The same formula above applies, as Buford drives to the lane under control, draws the defense and finds the open man.
OSU had little trouble with the press of Florida. I was surprised Florida stuck with the press, even after it was clear that Florida’s guards could not keep up with OSU’s. They broke it by beating the defense through the dribble/pass, getting the ball to the middle of the court, drawing the defense and finding the open man.