Out of the sheer goodness of my heart, I’m throwing you one more Big Ten bracketology bone, for both the NCAA Tournament and the NIT. Joe Lunardi has declared that 36 bubble teams are already in, and while Jerry Palm has the Iowa Hawkeyes as one of the first four teams out, it doesn’t look like there will be much intrigue in the Big Ten beyond seedings.
So let’s hop to it!
|Bracketology (3/11)||Jerry Palm (3/11)||Joe Lunardi (3/11)||SBNation (3/11)|
|Purdue||4||W||East Tennessee State||4||W||East Tennessee State||4||E||Bucknell|
|wisconsin||6||W||Wake Forest/Kansas State||6||MW||Wake Forest/Kansas State||6||MW||Middle Tennessee State|
|Northwestern||8||MW||Wichita State||8||MW||Wichita State||7||W||South Carolina|
|Michigan St||10||E||Iowa State||10||W||Creighton||9||MW||Miami|
|NYC Buckets (3/11)||D-Ratings (3/11)||Bracket Matrix (3/10)|
|Indiana||3||Fresno State||2||Cal State Bakersfield||2||Boise State|
|Ohio State||5||Colorado State||-||-||5||Ole Miss|
 Michigan vs.  Minnesota
12pm || CBS || Mich -4.5
I just want to say that I think Michigan favored is already nutty, and Michigan laying 4.5 is just fucking insane.
Graham Filler: Tremendous contrast of styles, which everyone and their mother is aware of. Minnesota will want to muddy this game, pound the ball into the paint, force Moritz Wagner into foul trouble...Michigan will want to play Mich ball.
One note: I've always believed that the Beilein system works well in March Madness because it's an equalizing system. It slows games down and if Michigan has lesser talent than the other team, causes games to be close contests.
WhiteSpeedReceiver: We have size and play defense. It should be enough to win and get Beilein to have another episode in the process.
Losing Akeem Springs hurts our depth, but it shouldn't be the end of the world. It'll be interesting to watch Amir Coffey's size play defense from the 2 now.
GF: [WSR] is going to owe me beer.
WSR: Ann Arbor has questionable moral fiber.
 wisconsin vs.  Northwestern
2:30pm || CBS || wi -4.5
WSR: Also, I believe it should go without saying but GO PURPLE CATS!
MNW: Just like a Minnesota fan, needing someone else to beat wisconsin because they can’t do it themselves. Typical.
The ‘Cats aren’t sneaking up on anyone at this point, especially not the badgers, who were ranked 7th when Northwestern stymied them at the Clearance Rack with a coterie of post double-teams to slow Ethan Happ and an abysmal shooting day from, well, everyone in red, especially Bronson Koenig, who managed 2 points on 1/8 shooting.
Now Koenig hasn’t scored fewer than 17 in his last 5 outings and has shot over 50% from deep in all but one of those contests. Given how Kevin Huerter was able to get plenty of clean looks yesterday, that’s of concern for the ‘Cats, as should be D’Mitrik Trice, who is rounding into form nicely.
Chris Collins called on both Vic Law and Bryant McIntosh to go the full 40 the only time these two clubs met, and on the third straight day of gameplay I don’t know if that’s possible. Northwestern will need yeoman’s work out of Jordan Ash and Isiah Brown off the bench to slow wisconsin’s guards, and Dererk Pardon will need to stay out of foul trouble. It’s a tall ask, but HOUSE MONEY at this point means let’s see how it goes.
It’s also worth noting that wisconsin is only 14-13 against the spread as a favorite this year, while Northwestern is 7-2-1 against the line when an underdog. Something for you degenerates out there.
Alright, I’m going off three hours of restless sleep on a couple Delta flights, so I’m hitting the hay until 2:25. Y’all enjoy this open thread—don’t wreck the place.