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B1G Baseball Weekly Update (3/24 - 3/29)

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With the B1G out of the NCAA tournament in both shootyhoops and stickypuck we need something to look forward to around here. Something that appeals to the best in all of us. Something good. Something pure. No, not B1G 2016. Although that'll come soon enough. I'm talking about B1G baseball. Conference play started last weekend so let's see how things are shaping up at this point in the season.

There are not that many B1G Baseball related pictures out there so here is one of Alex Gordon.  Bask in his glory.
There are not that many B1G Baseball related pictures out there so here is one of Alex Gordon. Bask in his glory.
Steven Branscombe-USA TODAY Sports

B1G conference play started last weekend with a few teams still finishing up non-conference play. Here is where we stand after the weekend:

STANDINGS CONFERENCE OVERALL
Michigan State 3-0 18-4
Nebraska 3-0 17-7
Ohio State 2-1 15-7-1
Illinois 2-1 10-12
Iowa 2-1 10-12
Maryland 1-2 12-12
Penn State 1-2 11-12
Northwestern 1-2 6-18
Michigan 0-0 17-5
Minnesota 0-0 12-9
Indiana 0-0 12-11
Rutgers 0-3 9-14
Purdue 0-3 4-17

Illinois (10-12, 2-1) RPI: 114

03/25/16 PENN STATE W 5-0
03/26/16 PENN STATE W 6-1
03/26/16 PENN STATE L 3-5
03/29/16 at Indiana St. L 4-5

Won the series against PSU but followed that up with a loss to the Sycamores. The Illini will face a tough test this weekend in Lincoln.

Up next: 4/1 - 4/3 @ Nebraska; 4/5 Eastern Illinois

Indiana (12-11, 0-0) RPI: 192

03/25/16 at Indiana St. W 7-5
03/26/16 INDIANA ST. L 1-5
03/27/16 INDIANA ST. W 5-3
03/29/16 CINCINNATI L 0-5

Showed Illinois up by winning a weekend series vs. Indiana St. but then got shutout by Cincinnati.

Up next: 3/30 Evansville; 4/1 - 4/3 @Rutgers

Iowa (10-12, 2-1) RPI: 159

03/25/16 MARYLAND W 8-1
03/26/16 MARYLAND W 4-1
03/27/16 MARYLAND L 1-4
03/29/16 NORTHERN ILL. W 12-3

Good series win against the Terps plus crushing Northern Ill. makes this a pretty productive week for the Hawkeyes. Have a pretty big matchup with Minnesota in which Iowa will try to lower that RPI.

Up next: 4/1 - 4/3 @Minnesota; 4/5 Milwaukee (Brewers?)

Maryland (12-12, 1-2) RPI: 64

03/25/16 at Iowa L 1-8
03/26/16 at Iowa L 1-4
03/27/16 at Iowa W 4-1
03/29/16 VCU W 8-1

Lost the weekend series to Iowa but was able to salvage that by rolling past VCU in a mid-week series in which they'll finish tomorrow.

Up next: 3/30 @VCU; 4/1 - 4/3 High Point

Michigan (17-5, 0-0) RPI: 18

03/25/16 ILL.-CHICAGO W 10-2
03/26/16 ILL.-CHICAGO W 5-0
03/26/16 ILL.-CHICAGO W 10-4
03/27/16 ILL.-CHICAGO W 5-4
03/29/16 CENTRAL MICH. W 9-7

Steam rolled past the Flames of Ill.-Chicago as well as Directional Michigan.

Up next: 4/1 - 4/3 @Northwestern; 4/5 @ Notre Dame

Michigan State (18-4, 3-0) RPI: 26

03/26/16 RUTGERS W 5-2
03/26/16 RUTGERS W 5-4
03/27/16 RUTGERS W 6-5
03/29/16 OAKLAND L 1-3

Gave the broom treatment to Rutgers but dropped a rare game to Oakland causing their RPI to take a hit in the process. Has a decent weekend matchup with the Ducks to try and make up ground.

Up next: 4/1 - 4/3 Oregon; 4/5 Eastern Michigan

Minnesota (12-9, 0-0) RPI: 23

03/25/16 at Missouri St. L 4-5
03/26/16 at Missouri St. W 12-5
03/26/16 at Missouri St. W 7-5

Huge series win against formerly ranked Missouri St. which dropped (raised?) the Gophers RPI significantly. Will try to keep that 'momentum' going by hosting Iowa this weekend.

Up next: 3/30 @ St. Mary's (MN); 4/1 - 4/3 Iowa; 4/5 North Dakota St.

Nebraska (17-7, 3-0) RPI: 29

03/25/16 at Purdue W 9-5
03/26/16 at Purdue W 11-6
03/27/16 at Purdue W 9-8
03/29/16 CREIGHTON W 8-2

Nebraska keeps one of the nation's longest win streaks going by sweeping Purdue and taking care of in-state rival Bluejays.

Up next: 4/1 - 4/3 Illinois; 4/5 KSU

Northwestern (6-18, 1-2) RPI: 268

03/25/16 at Ohio State W 6-5
03/26/16 at Ohio State L 2-5
03/27/16 at Ohio State L 4-5

Lost the series to aOSU but did get a precious win moving their total up to six. Things don't get any easier with Michigan coming to town next week.

Up next: 3/30 Chicago St.; 4/1 - 4/3 Michigan; 4/5 Ill.-Chicago

Ohio State (15-7, 2-1) RPI: 168

03/25/16 NORTHWESTERN L 5-6
03/26/16 NORTHWESTERN W 5-2
03/27/16 NORTHWESTERN W 5-4
03/29/16 at Ohio W 6-3

Won the series against Northwestern and a mid-week game against Ohio. Still not getting any love from the computers though.

Up next: 3/30 Toledo; 4/1 - 4/3 Bethune-Cookman; 4/5 @Kent St.

Penn State (11-12, 1-2) RPI: 120

03/25/16 at Illinois L 0-5
03/26/16 at Illinois L 1-6
03/26/16 at Illinois W 5-3
03/29/16 YOUNGSTOWN STATE UNIVERSITY W 6-1

Lost the series to Illinois but did managed to pick up a win against Youngstown St.

Up next: 3/30 Binghampton (Municipal Workers?); 4/1 - 4/3 Purdue; 4/5 Pittsburgh

Purdue (4-17, 0-3) RPI: 251

03/25/16 NEBRASKA L 5-9
03/26/16 NEBRASKA L 6-11
03/27/16 NEBRASKA L 8-9

Got the broom treatment from the Huskers this past weekend but made a game of it in the rubber match.

Up next: 3/30 Valpo; 4/1 - 4/3 @PSU; 4/5 @Indiana St.

Rutgers (9-14, 0-3) RPI: 71

03/26/16 at Michigan State L 2-5
03/26/16 at Michigan State L 4-5
03/27/16 at Michigan State L 5-6
03/29/16 MONMOUTH W 20-4

Up next: 3/30 @Monmouth; 4/1 - 4/3 Indiana

Was swept by MSU this weekend and apparently took their frustrations out on Monmouth afterward.

Wisconsin (6-9) RPI:  666

One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight
shlemiel, schlemazel, hasenpfeffer incorporated

Shwing!

We're gonna make it!

RPI as of 3/29/16 courtesy of d1baseball.com

Players of the Week

Player of the Week: Brian Wilhite INF, Sr., IND
Hit .563 last week with three home runs (two of those being grand slams!) and 10 RBIs. This is his first career Big Ten Player of the Week award.

Pitcher of the Week: Dakota Mekkes P, So., MSU
Had 4.2 innings of relief last week with two saves against Rutgers. Also recorded five strikeouts in 2.1 inning of work in his first appearance against the Scarlet Knights. This is his first career Big Ten Pitcher of the Week honor.

Freshman of the Week: Robert Neustrom OF, IOWA
Hit .500 on the week while recording six hits and three RBIs. This is his first career Big Ten Freshman of the Week honor.

What to Watch This Week

BTN is doing its part to broadcast more and more B1G baseball/softball games so here is what you can find for baseball/softball coverage this week. All times Eastern

Baseball

Sunday, April 03 Iowa - Minnesota 3:00 PM

Softball

Saturday, April 02 Michigan State - Penn State 3:00 PM
Sunday, April 03 Rutgers - Illinois 1:00 PM
Tuesday, April 05 Indiana - Purdue 3:00 PM
Tuesday, April 05 Indiana - Purdue 5:30 PM
Wednesday, April 06 Penn State - Ohio State 4:00 PM
Wednesday, April 06 Penn State - Ohio State 6:30 PM

Players of the week, schedule, and results courtesy of bigten.org & btn.com