How critical is Aaron Craft’s play to The Buckeyes’ success?
Aaron Craft is a thrill to watch, unless you’re opposing him; then he’s an absolute terror. He’s also been inconsistent on offense. I wondered, if Aaron Craft has an off-day shooting, how does that impact the Buckeye’s chances?
Craft is consistent on defense
In the Buckeyes’ 34 games (27-7), Craft has averaged 2.1 steals per game (a stat that greatly discounts the turnovers he creates each game). How does this break down in games the Buckeyes won and lost?
Craft is remarkably consistent. He always brings his A-game on defense.
Offense is a different story
While Craft is stoic on defense, his offense is much more variable. Craft shoots almost 50% better in wins than in Buckeye losses.
Of Aaron Craft’s 7 worst shooting games this year, 4 were losses (and 2 were blowouts).
Clearly, the Buckeyes need Craft to shoot well, in addition to leading the defense.
How does Craft compare to Deshaun Thomas?
Deshaun Thomas is the Buckeyes’ leading scorer. I wondered, how does variations in his performance affect the Buckeyes’ chances of winning?
Thomas is as consistent on offense as Craft is on Defense. There’s no difference in his shooting percentage in wins and losses.
So, as you’re watching the Buckeyes in the NCAA tournament over the next few weeks, the key will be to watch Aaron Craft’s offense. If he has a strong offensive game, it bodes well for their chances. And if he’s cold from the floor, look out.