Okay, let's go ahead and start with Minnesota-Michigan before I dive into full-on mocking of Illinois basketball. The turning point for the Gophers last night, in my opinion, was early on actually. At the 3:24 mark, Trey Burke got stripped by Julian Welch and the Gophers were off to the races on the break, but a terrible fastbreak (not all too unlike every single Nebraska fastbreak this season), derailed what would have been a tie game and Michigan was able to turn the tables and get a fastbreak dunk from Tim Hardaway Jr. In a matter of 14 seconds, the Wolverines avoided a tie game with an unbelievable crowd and ended up with a four point lead that would not get any closer for the rest of the game.
Sure, one might argue that there were chances by the Gophers, but Michigan generally took care of business and had a clutch shot when it mattered. This was a crazy away game for the Wolverines, but they rose to the challenge. Likewise, Minnesota is not a team to be trifled with. As the Big Ten enters the stretch run over the next few weeks, be prepared for some lights out basketball. Of course, that is unless you are a fan of the Illini who are doing their best impression of the Illini football game -- early hype and a lot of crashing and burning. To the Illini faithful, I have no idea how you're dealing with all this...
Anyhow, in their second game of the Big Ten schedule, Illinois took down big bad Ohio State (a team who many thought were the class of the conference) and staked their legitimacy. There were concerns after the Purdue loss, but many just wrote that off as early conference jitters and this announced the Illini to the conference. Since that game, Illinois has looked... well, not so good. Losses to Minnesota and Wisconsin are excusable, but getting ran out of your own court versus Northwestern? Come on now. Lucky for the Illini, they have a date with a depleted Husker team who has their own set of issues. Unfortunately, to take advantage of those, the Illini need to do a lot of soul-searching themselves.
B1G Team Links
- Sorry to pile on Illini, but you're kind of an easy target right now. Looks like Beckman's aggressive recruiting strategies aren't doing so well with th loss of a second recruit, Safety Joshua Jones, in a week. #RecruitsAreNiceThingsThatIllinoisApparentlyCantHave
- Also from our friends at the Champaign Room: The Saddest Basketball Recap Ever. (This is also pretty self-loathing over at A Lion Eye) Never fear Illini fans, you get Nebrasketball next!
- I suppose we should be a little nice. The Illini women's basketball team upset Nebraska and your wrestling team is ranked 5th, so yay non-revenue sports?
- The Crimson Quarry recaps the Wisconsin loss and points to some areas of concern moving forward.
- There really aren't any Indiana football posts anywhere on the internet right now. If you all find one, let me know and I'll try to keep an eye open for them. I'm going to go ahead and assume that won't happen.
- BHGP talks with B5Q about MBB and their game on SAT (okay, I'm reaching on the last abbreviation, but it was a theme).
- Also, HEC at BHGP gives us this: Chip Kelly Gives Farewell Address Via Obscure Pictograms
- Freshman Center, Adam Woodbury of Iowa is trying to find his shooting touch in conference play.
- MnB gives us a "State of the Michigan Wolverines Football Program."
- Also, remember the whining about Urban Meyer getting players to flip? Welp, pretty much everyone does it because a verbal commitment is worth about as much as that AS SEEN ON TV commemorative coin you bought that isn't even made from real gold and actually has the wrong Mount Rushmore on it and looks to be made in China and... Wait, what was I talking about? Oh yeah, Michigan has flipped two conference commits.
- Lots of theatrics last night with the Barn providing a great backdrop to a game that anyone could appreciate.
- Adreian Payne looked good to me when I've seen Sparty play basketball so far, and TOC does the statistical treatment to show how good he can be.
- Dantonio will be hosting a ridiculous amount of recruits this weekend in what is probably the most important weekend of recruiting this year for the Spartans.
- Slow starting Gophers doomed in matchup against Wolverines (We've been over this, right?).
- Tubby Smith was disappointed in the Gophers 'effort' last night, which after turning the ball over ten times in the first half, you can kind of get that.
- Interesting take from TDG on the A.J. Barker story and the media's portrayal of the whole thing.
- New Nebraska AD Shawn Eichorst says, "I think that our head football coach is an excellent coach, character-based, fundamentally sound... I'm impressed with his staff. I'm impressed with our players, their attitude, how they go about their business, their academics." So Pelini is safe for now I guess.
- Also, apparently ESPN really likes talking without an ounce of research. Big XII Blogger, David Ubben said Nebraska regrets moving to the Big Ten to which everyone, including Husker Mike, said Ubben can shove it.
- Hail Varsity recaps the Nebraska effort versus Purdue with a neat little Tim Miles insight:
But Miles wasn't looking for positives after the game.
He called a timeout with Nebraska down nine and 22 seconds remaining to prove his point."I said, ‘Look around, what do you see? Empty seats, people heading to the exits.' We're supposed to be part of the solution, not part of the problem and I'm not interested in continuing this," Miles said.
- I enjoy the fact that even in victory, Northwestern gets dissed in the headlines: "Baffling as it is, NU Wallops Illinois," was the headline in the Chicago Tribune.
- I haven't been over to Sippin on Purple for a while, but their Breaking News banner is awesome.
- Well, I suppose we might as well get used to the sight of OSU on top of every preseason Big Ten Power Poll. With that said, even giving the 'this is way too early' caveat, this is still a ridiculous post.
- Lots of good stuff regarding Buckeye Draftees over at LGHL.
- When I heard OSU would get a lot of love from Oregon recruits now that Kelly is gone, I was skeptical. Turns out I shouldn't have been.
- BOB just won the Bear Bryant award for Coach of the Year. Congrats to him!
- I gotta admit, Penn State does some really good things for philanthropic causes.
- BSD has a good look at how Penn State keeps such good tabs on both academics and athletic pursuits in football.
- The H&R recap of the Nebraska win. Probably should've posted this yesterday, but I was running short on time. First Purdue road conference win of the season.
- Another cool thing done by a B1G football team as far as reaching out to the community. Good job by the Boilers.
- Hey, Curt Phillips is back Wisconsin! Sixth year of eligibility granted.
- By the way everyone, Bo Ryan does, in fact, know how to coach no matter how much we wish his coaching style would die a fiery death.
- The reverse of BHGP interviewing B5Q with B5Q grilling BHGP on MBB Matchup.