NEW ORLEANS (AP) -- Ohio State coach Thad Matta threw his players out of practice in late February.
They wouldn't leave, and it became the turning point in the Buckeyes' season.
Frustrated with his team's lack of focus and effort during a rough stretch in the season, Matta abruptly ended practice on Feb. 25 and told his players to go home. They decided to finish practice on their own, and Matta eventually returned.
Although the Buckeyes lost the next day to Wisconsin, the message clearly sank in. Ohio State won eight of its next nine games and made an unexpected run to the Final Four.
Playing their best basketball of the season, the Buckeyes face Kansas on Saturday in the Big Easy.