BY JEFF BORZELLO
FOXSports.com Stud of the Night: If it’s not Jared Sullinger, it’s David Lighty. If it’s not Lighty, it’s William Buford. On Wednesday, the man who stepped up for Ohio State was guard Jon Diebler – who hit nine straight 3-pointers en route to a career-high 29 points to lead the Buckeyes to an easy win over Florida Gulf Coast, 83-55. Diebler missed his first two attempts and his last three attempts, but hit all nine in between, tying an Ohio State record for trifectas in a game.
Dud: After losing to Louisville over the weekend, UNLV needed to bounce back against Big West favorite UC-Santa Barbara. However, the Runnin’ Rebels missed 23 3-pointers, shot just 29 percent from the field and less than 60 percent from the free-throw line. Not surprisingly, UCSB pulled off the upset, 68-62. Defensively, UNLV wasn’t much better, allowing the Gauchos to make 50 percent of their shots, including nine 3-pointers.
Mid-Major Stud: Despite losing star Anthony Johnson from last year’s team, Montana has still managed to knock off two Pac-10 teams, with Oregon State as the latest victim. Leading the barrage was Brian Qvale, who finished with 27 points, 18 rebounds – including nine on the offensive end – and five blocked shots. Qvale kept the Grizzlies alive in the first half, scoring 21 of his points before the break.
Stat of the Night: Yes, it came against Bethune-Cookman, but don’t overlook Baylor guard A.J. Walton’s line against the Wildcats. Walton had 10 assists and just one turnover, which is exactly what the Bears need from him if they are going to make a run in March. In three of his first five games, Walton had more turnovers than assists. Baylor has plenty of scoring with Lace Dunn and a long and athletic frontcourt; Walton just needs to take care of the ball and facilitate the offense.
On Tap: Not much going on again on Thursday, although it will be interesting to see how Missouri plays in its first game without Mike Dixon as its point guard, against Oral Roberts. Northern Arizona, who has hung with Creighton and USC, heads to Arizona, while Northwestern looks to continue its undefeated season against American.