NO. 6: FAU BASKETBALL UPSETS OHIO STATE
At 2-5 entering a midweek game against the Ohio State Buckeyes in early December, the best FAU could hope for was a competitive game. Few would have expected the Owls upsetting the Buckeyes with a 79-77 win in overtime.
Down 58-47 at one point, FAU scored 14 unanswered and shut the Buckeyes down late in the fourth quarter, setting up an overtime period which point guard Nick Rutherford – who scored all 11 of his points in the final 25 minutes – sealed with a floater. Senior Adonis Filer led the way as well with 23 points.
A week before landing Lane Kiffin as FAU’s new football coach, Florida Atlantic’s basketball team made national news with arguably their biggest win in program history – and, certainly, the biggest by any of the university’s sports teams for the 2016-17 year.
Though FAU had a three-game wining streak late in Conference USA play, this was the real highlight in what was otherwise a disappointing season.
What We Wrote
Why It’s Important
Before FAU was making national news for the Kiffin hiring, this was a positive moment for the university and a program that had seen rough times in previous years. Still in search of their first winning season since 2010-11 – when the Owls were in the Sun Belt Conference – FAU outplayed a team that was on the brink of being nationally ranked.
While FAU did make its second consecutive appearance in the C-USA tournament, the win over Ohio State was one of the few times where the team jelled on the court. In a season where the Owls put up abysmal performances from behind the arc, FAU even made 40% of their three-pointers.
Six months after FAU’s win, Ohio St. parted ways with basketball coach Thad Matta. With FAU coach Michael Curry under pressure to win next season and athletic director Pat Chun’s ties to Ohio St., is it too early to speculate that…? Yeah, it probably is.
No. 10: Baseball Relationship Ballpark of the Palm Beaches
No. 9: Football Beset by Injuries
No. 8: The Quarterback Battles
No. 7: Schmidt Complex: It’s a Start
No. 6: Buckeye Surprise
No. 5: The Sirens Call
No. 4: One Stormy Week
No. 3: Partridge Fired
No. 2: Forgettable Seasons
No. 1: The Lane Train