Ohio State enters a women’s basketball game tonight at Nebraska, the Big Ten’s last-place team, on the precipice of nine straight wins.

The Buckeyes already are experiencing their longest winning streak of the season, but, like all but one current winning streak in sports, a galaxy away from 100 straight.

OSU’s eight consecutive wins have been necessary to keep the No. 12 Buckeyes (22-5, 12-1) in consideration for hosting a regional in the NCAA Tournament despite what has been considered a weak Big Ten this season. Coach Kevin McGuff said he preaches consistency as a means of avoiding distraction, and he has had some success with that message. The Buckeyes won 11 straight last season, and McGuff’s Xavier team in 2009-10 won 21 straight on the path to an Elite Eight appearance.

The biggest challenge in maintaining a streak, McGuff said, is showing up to each practice and game focused, which is why he called Connecticut’s current stretch of 100 straight victories “amazing.”

“In this day and age, kids are easily distracted. They get thinking about not the game in front of them or not the practice in front of them,” McGuff said. “For you to be able to show up every single day and get better every single game, not overlook anybody, show up every single game and have your ‘A’ game is truly amazing. It has just really been an amazing thing to see in our sport.”

Few can understand the mental toughness of the current Huskies, save for a handful of former UConn players.

Maya Moore, who was in Columbus on Wednesday for the Greater Columbus Sports Commission’s annual Women’s Sports Report, said her run of 90 straight wins while playing at Connecticut give her a special appreciation for the group of players who recently surpassed her and her teammates.

“It’s really an amazing experience, but it takes a lot of focus because there is so much hype, so much talk going around, that at the end of the day if you don’t come out and play every possession, you will look back and let one slip away,” she said.

Moore said UConn coach Geno Auriemma helps matters by refusing to shy away from the situation.

“He says, ‘Obviously we’re not going to pretend like this isn’t happening. It’s happening. But we have to find a way to block all that out and win every possession,’ ” Moore said. “And we were able to do that for 90 straight games.”

As UConn continues to attract more eyes to women’s basketball, the next step for the sport, McGuff said, is other programs improving to try to match the Huskies’ success.

For Ohio State, each consecutive win is positive step, but a long, long way from 100.

“I mean, it’s hard to imagine, quite frankly,” McGuff said.