The Big Ten’s three ranked teams—wisconsin, Purdue, and Maryland—all took to the road this week to take on scuffling opponents in Nebraska, Indiana, and Penn State, respectively.
Only two survived, and now the Big Ten might have just two ranked teams when next Monday rolls around.
Other things we learned?
- It’s not The Year. Seriously. Just give it up already.
- Michigan continues to yo-yo back and forth on the bubble, and their rout of Sparty was a perfect indication as to why. They might be the most hot-and-cold team in the Big Ten.
- Is it possible for the Big Ten to get all four 10-seeds? Who knows, maybe Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, and Indiana could all make it happen. That’d be exciting!
- Somehow wisconsin is playing their way closer and closer to a 2-seed despite finding a way to make Gardball even uglier than Bo-ball. Incredible.
- Rumor has it Iowa got jobbed in Minneapolis. Reports from Hawkeye Elvis (who was incogneetus behind the Iowa bench) indicate that there were two kinds of Mad Fran last night—angry at the players, apoplectic at the refs.
- The Hall of Calls came up just short this time.
- Oh, Nebraska. Ohhhh, Nebraska :(
Penn State 70, #21 Maryland 64
Aaron Yorke: After a disheartening loss to Rutgers, it was awesome to see Penn State bounce back and defeat Maryland at home. The Lions went just 2-for-18 from beyond the arc but triumphed thanks to terrific defense that held the Terps under 35 percent shooting and a tremendous game from Lamar Stevens. The freshman has not been a major factor in every game this season, but he showed up big time to give Penn State 25 points on just 13 field goal attempts to go with seven rebounds and three steals.
DJ Carver: Reason 1000 why this sucks: first time we've lost to Penn State in bball since 1990 and my boss is a PSU grad. Have heard about it all morning.
Michigan 86, Michigan State 57
Graham Filler: Michigan shot 90% and won 123-14. They won so convincingly that the Big Ten went back and reversed the OSU call HE WAS SHORT. Anyways doesn't really change a thing for Wolverines. Good momentum but must win 75% of games on out, plus a quality win, to make the tourney.
But good lord. Those fast break dunks! That loud crowd! Wagner going HAM. This was therapeutic.
Xavier Simpson too! Welcome to the show!
Andrew K: I ain't staying up for the rest of this garbage, so I'll leave it at this: when Michigan is raining molten metal from deep, they're hard to handle. Especially when your entire team minus Miles Bridges simultaneously forgets how to play basketball. Meh, sometimes you suck. I remain convinced MSU isn't out of the bubble woods yet, and that would have been true with a win tonight. Sooner or later they have to beat a good team or a bad team that's playing well (like tonight).
But hey, at least Michigan fans get something nice in lieu of a tournament appearance ;D
Illinois 68, Northwestern 61
MNW: Northwestern bracketology: 20 would mean 9-9 in conference, which likely isn't good enough given a lack of a Good Win (besides Dayton and Wake, which...). 21 would mean 10-8 in conference and likely avoiding another Bad Loss, which would probably be enough.
This stretch of games could not have come at a worse time, as Scottie Lindsey being out means Northwestern is positively lost on offense. Bryant McIntosh is simply not efficient enough to consistently win games on his own, and Vic Law can't carry the whole thing by himself. From here it's @wisconsin and home against Maryland, two more likely losses (I honestly do not care what DJ or any other despondent Maryland fans have to take about this), and then with games against rutger, Illinois, and Indiana, Northwestern likely will need to sweep _after_ coming off a 4-game losing streak. That's just not good.
Honestly, an NIT berth is what we were hoping for at the start of the season. Time to just accept that as the likely outcome. Go 'Cats, beat someone.
Thumpasaurus: Illinois picked up its first road win of the year thanks to brief flashes of offensive flow, combined with northwestern's insistence on missing open shots. Tejon Lucas and Michael Finke show that there's plenty of returning talent for a new coach to be excited about.
Make no mistake, they benefitted from some bad shooting, but I can't help but admire their refusal to go gentle into that good night.
Ohio State 70, rutger 64
Reports out of Piscataway are that rutger might not be as bad as previously thought. After a win at Penn State, the Scarlet Knights fell just short at Columbus. Ohio State keeps its fleeting dreams alive, as Thad Matta is cobbling together just passable enough a season.
Minnesota 101, Iowa 89 (2OT)
Creighton M: You should just make my recap a slightly sped up video of refs running around a basketball court with "Yakety Sax" playing over it.
Stewmonkey13: Reggie Lynch and Jordan Murphy made life in the paint were damn nigh impossible for the Hawkeyes. In the first half Peter Jok was really struggling and still looked injured. And without the Herculean effort from Isaiah Moss, Iowa would have been in even a bigger hole at halftime. After the break, though, it was the Jok show. He went off, scoring a game high 28 points in the win, as Iowa went on a run to take the lead late, and hold on to win 77-75.
Also, these go here:
Can bear Ellingson calling time out multiole times pic.twitter.com/VW74Iu3ZBC— Heavens! (@HeavensHawkeye) February 9, 2017
And Jordan Murphy was also standing out of bounds and both the out of bounds and shot clock violation were reviewable, yet the refs refused to review it.
WhiteSpeedReceiver: I feel like last night's game is best recapped simply by quoting Iowa fans: "WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH!"
2015-16 Jordan Murphy finally showed up last night and made a huge difference. He and Reggie Lynch were disgusting inside and made all the difference in the world.
Stew: Also refs.
#16 Purdue 69, Indiana 64
Candystripes for Breakfast: This season sucks. Injuries suck. Purdue still sucks. I kinda almost want it to be football season, but it's too soon to deal with that much heartbreak again. Can we just put sports on pause for, like, a year or so?
Babaoreally just replied with a basketball emoji, so I can only assume he’s rather pleased.
Also, this happened:
Have you ever seen two players foul out at the same time?— Big Ten Network (@BigTenNetwork) February 10, 2017
It happened in Bloomington Thursday: https://t.co/WhF2RjEnLP
#7 wisconsin 70, Nebraska 69 (OT)
I put out a call for recaps on Thursday morning, so I could start aggregating them. As usual, BigRedTwice was quick to the draw. There was just one problem...
BRT: With stellar production from Webster and Watson, as well as from the bench in the form of McVeigh and Horne, Nebrasketball crushed an unsuspecting Badger team Thursday night in Lincoln. The Husker D smothered the Badgers, and the visitors from Madison were hard-pressed to get anything to fall in their lowest-scoring game of the season.
The Huskers have surprised other top teams this season, but none of those big wins were a rout like this one. After stumbling past Rutgers and getting blasted by Nebraska, the Badgers badly need to regroup heading into the final weeks of the season.
MNW: ...oh, wow. So that was intriguing. Despite 22 (!!!) turnovers, the Huskers kept it close against the badgers right to the very finish. Michael Jacobson made a three with a second left on the clock to force overtime, and then it got wild in a back-and-forth overtime.
Nigel Hayes (20 pts) made a three to put the badgers up 70-69 with :21 to go, and Ethan Happ (who dominated the glass with 14 boards) blocked Tai Webster’s running layup with :05 to go. Hayes then missed two free throws, but Jacobson turned it over after the rebound and wisconsin escaped with a win.
Ed Morrow’s return—he grabbed 13 rebounds—was much-needed for Tim Miles’ club, which dominated the glass and shot 43% from deep. What could have been.
BRT: One point. :broken_heart: :broken_heart: :broken_heart: :broken_heart: :broken_heart: :broken_heart:
Who was your biggest surprise in the midweek matchups? Is it still The Year? Be sure to buy a shirt to really drive the knife home!
Thanks as always for reading OTE Squeakyfouls.
-MNW and the Shootyhoops Gang