#15 Wisconsin 61, rutger 54 (OT)
DJ: What. The. Fuck. Seriously, what did I watch? You are forever rutger this year after I admittedly started rooting for you and thought you were going to upset Wisconsin in the lowest scoring game since 36-33. Your only job in this game was to guard Ethan Happ after the rest of Wisconsin couldn’t hit the broad side of a barn but NOPE.
MNWildcat: hahahahahahahahhahhaha rutger. Seriously just fuck you. Get out of the conference. I am so sick of this shit. Fucking embarassing horseshit program. $38MM loans, can’t beat a wisconsin team that shoots 30% from the field and like 5% from deep. Leave. Get out. Go away. Got outdrawn by FUCKING WISCONSIN in Madison Square fucking Garden. Oh yeah, you fucking OWN New York City. Way to fucking go.
#22 Maryland 85, Minnesota 78
DJ: What a fun game. Maryland outlasted a 19-1 by Minnesota early on in the first half to cut the lead by the Gophers to 7 going into halftime. Maryland’s freshmen really shined in this game, going a combined 10-12 from three point range between Kevin Huerter and Justin Jackson by themselves. Combine that with Melo Trimble posting a 13/7/9 stat line and that’s going to be hard to beat. Maryland’s offense looked nearly flawless with 59 points in what was a really exciting second half to watch as both teams swapped big play with big play. In the end, Maryland’s hot shooting from the arc proved to be the difference as Kevin Huerter knocked down a corner 3 with about 2 minutes to go to put Maryland ahead for good. If performances like that are going to be the norm, Maryland will be hard to beat from here on out. They’ll struggle against size but if the outside shooting stays hot that will easily help in negating that disadvantage.
Edit: GCNY’s take he emailed in:
“Everything seemed to be going perfectly- the Gophers were hitting their free throws, Reggie Lynch was staying out of foul trouble, and Minnesota looked to finally be on track to win a game, especially after Damonte Dodd inexplicably gave Jordan Murphy four chances to hit two free throws with consecutive lane violations. Then, Minnesota started being Minnesota again. Reggie Lynch came back in the game with five minutes to go and promptly fouled out, and Justin Jackson (not the ball-carrier) took over. Kevin Huerter torched the Gophers' normally stingy three-point defense, and Jackson finished with 28 points.
This was a game that Minnesota needed to win, and they did everything they could to piss it away down the stretch. They blocked ten shots, and five scorers finished in double figures, but they still managed to lose. Lynch finished with a double-double, and Akeem Springs went off for 23 points, but this is still a very disappointing loss, and the Gophers will need to win in Chambana to remain in the field of 68.”
Penn State 71, Illinois 67
DJ: What a story of two halves that saw Penn State holding on for dear life. Penn State went into the half of this game up 45-25, most likely expecting to cruise to victory against the apparently lifeless Illini. Then the second half started and a different Illinois team emerged as Malcolm Hill and Jalen Coleman-Lands led the comeback. At the end, Shep Garner was draining FTs to keep the game on ice for the Nittany Lions.
John Groce on the 1st half: “Just didn’t think we were really good. We could be here for 30 minutes picking on a variety of areas in the first half.” Yikes.
Iowa 85, Ohio State 72
StewMonkey13: Without Jok Iowa had a comfortable win over OSU. Not exactly expected. With Jok out, McCaffery mostly scrapped the standard motion offense and went to a lot of different set plays to help the very young team get soem points, and it worked in spades. At one point, 61 straight Iowa points were scored by freshmen or sophomores. OSU also looked very confused, defensively, by the different looks Iowa through at them. The scoring came from some pretty unlikely sources, too. Brady Ellington, a guy a lot of fans thought would transfer, went off for 17 points, going 5/7 from deep, and Ryan Kriener had 14. Meanwhile, Nicholas Baer continues to humiliate the opposition by being good at basketball despite being a hunchback.
Michigan State 70, Michigan 62
Andrew: MSU badly needed this win against Michigan, and got it with contributions from a number of guys. Miles Bridges was phenomenal, filling the stat sheet and containing DJ Wilson, who seemed to have no interest in challenging Bridges on the drive. Getting some scoring punch from Matt McQuaid off the bench was a good sign. Most encouraging, though, was the heady play of Cassius Winston, who matched Derrick Walton drive for drive down the stretch and hit the critical free throws to keep the game on ice. MSU still needs to get on a serious roll to continue the tourney streak, but this was a good start. By quirk of the schedule, these teams will part for one game and then reconvene for a rematch [DJ: Fuck the Big Ten scheduling home/homes for everyone so close together]. It’s fair to say Zak irvin probably won’t go scoreless in that one, so MSU cannot be comfortable with this win.
Nebraska 83, #20 Purdue 80
BRT: Husker Harbor! So, this team could lose to rutger or beat Indiana, Maryland, or Purdue on any given day, I guess. The Huskers, as they have all season, played their little hearts out. On paper, this was a horrible matchup for Nebraska: Purdue is notably gigantic, and also great at shooting threes. Nebraska, small even when at full strength, is still missing Ed Morrow’s presence, and has been decimated by three-point shooting teams lately (Notably, Northwestern). Early on, it looked like this was going to play out as the paper predicted. Purdue hit three or four 3’s right off the bat, and soon led the Huskers 18-9. But, as they’ve shown a knack for doing this season, the Huskers climbed back in and hung around. Helping them do that were some big contributors off the bench in Jack McVeigh (team high 21 points on 4-6 3 point shooting) and Jeriah Horne, who didn’t even play last game, but today contributed the second-most points with 16. The Huskers finally caught up to Purdue in the final minutes of the game, trading the lead a few times before going ahead for good. Purdue had a final chance to tie with a three at the end of the game, but for once, the three failed them, and the Huskers snapped a frustrating 5-game skid in grand fashion.
The Husker team plays their butts off every game, and it was awesome to see it pay off for them. Because of injuries to an already thin squad, every game seems to rely on a new combo of players, and it’s to their credit that they can roll with this mix and match. Tai Webster continues to display senior leadership by giving it his all, and Michael Jacobsen also deserves a shoutout today- flue stricken, he threw up twice in the first half and received an IV of fluids at half, and still played most of the game, battling inside against Purdue’s tanks and kicking in nine points.
Northwestern 68, Indiana 55
Candystripes: Bleh. Injuries suck, and turnovers suck more. Hello, NIT, here we come.
DJ: Northwestern is going dancing, folks. Hell, Northwestern is legitimately in double bye territory for the Big Ten Tournament this year. Let that sink in for a minute. Try all he could, Thomas Bryant could not will an Indiana team to a victory who are decimated by injury. Before this game itw as announced that James Blackmon, Jr was out indefinitely with a lower leg injury, which just adds to the mounting list of players hurt for this squad. Northwestern was led by Bryant McIntosh, who shot better than 50% from the field for 21 points and 8 assists.