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Big Ten Basketball Weekend: Oh, Nebraska. Ohhh, Nebraska. Don’t do that.

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Also: Can Mark Turgeon EVER beat a ranked team on the road?

ONE OF THESE COACHES HAS NOW LOST TO RUTGERS; IS THE OTHER FAR BEHIND?

There are things in the Big Ten you should just never do: Idolize coaches. Cheer for an SEC team.

Lose to Rutgers.

Sometimes, though, we all make mistakes. And, friends, fear not: We’re all here to help you get through this.

Or laugh at you. I forget which.

Friday

#19 Maryland Terrapins 75, Ohio State Buckeyes 61

DJ Carver: Bruno Fernando owned Kaleb Wessen in the paint. Threw down 13/15 to his 11/6.

Random Note: Maryland is shooting insane from the stripe since the loss to Seton Hall. 80% before today, another 14/16 performance tonight from the stripe.

James Snyder: Ohio State is trash, and I sha’n’t watch again in 2019. Slap that in any recaps you want.

Northwestern Wildcats 65, Rutgers Scarlet Knights 57

MNW: A two-center lineup? Multiple banked threes? Barret Benson swishing a three? Sure, I’m drunk enough that that worked.

Critically, the ‘Cats found their stroke from deep, hitting 40%, and perfectly matched the Knights on the boards (7 oreb and 27 dreb apiece). And special kudos to Ryan Taylor, who’s been getting attacked unnecessarily by idiot Northwestern fans—dude went 4/9 from deep for 14 points, exactly the contribution we need from him, especially on a night where Vic Law scuffled with the Knights’ D. Schedule gets no easier from here, so this was needed.

Saturday

wisconsin badgers 64, #2 Michigan Wolverines 54

Credit where credit is due. From the OTE Slack:

MC ClapYoHandz [9:31 AM]

80-56 Bucky

I mean, wisconsin scoring 80 points against the non-Savannah States of the world is ludicrous, but dude called it. And he came back to clarify:

brt: Checking in... how did Wisconsin beat Michigan? What?

MC ClapYoHandz: Vegetables and homework

Take notes, kids.

beez: Woooooooooooo!

Also Ethan Happ remains comically good, leading both teams in points, rebounds, and assists. Also also, boy this game must have been a grind to watch (I didn’t realize it was on so early on Saturday, because that’s a dumb time to play CBB, and I was off playing frisbee and eating barbeque).

Purdue Boilermakers 70, #25 Indiana Hoosiers 55

Candystripes for Breakfast: I’m concerned that Indiana is perfectly on track for a one and done appearance in a postseason tourney (and possibly not the NCAAs if they can’t get their shit together soon). They’ve looked flat for a few games in a row now, and while losing at Mackey is not a surprise, getting blown out at Mackey is, shall we say, supremely not good.

Boilerman31: That was enjoyable both from a viewing perspective and a betting perspective.

Whether it was Nojel Eastern shutting down Romeo Langford while getting his first double-double or Matt Haarms constantly getting to the hoop for a bevy of dunks, that was fun. I’ll still question some of the lineups Painter was throwing out there. However, the state of Indiana basketball continues to belong to the Boilermakers.

Minnesota Golden Gophers 65, Penn State Nittany Lions 64

Penn State basketball is so mediocre, even our non-hoopster Penn State fan is taking notice that, a season removed from an NIT championship, Pat Chambers seemingly has no answers in Happy Valley:

WhiteSpeedReceiver: Penn State isn’t good. We’re inconsistent and if it doesn’t get fixed we’re going to be talking about Minnesota coach Eric Musselman.

*Aaron Yorke:* Lamar Stevens rediscovered his three-point shot and played great in Minnesota, but he missed the game-winning jumper at the buzzer and Penn State fell to 0-8 in league play. Not great for a team that I expected to be around .500 in the Big Ten. Hey, that’s still technically possible.

The big issue is that the rest of the talent hasn’t developed. Josh Reaves shouldn’t be scoring fewer than 10 points in so many games, even if he does a lot of other things to help this team. It would also help if PSU had a legitimate point guard on the roster. I think it’s time to see what Myreon Jones can do there in an expanded role.

Sunday

#23 Iowa Hawkeyes 95, Illinois Fighting Illini 71

Stewmonkey13: Iowa had one of the better offense performances of the entire year for any college team.

Iowa had an eFG% of 83%, shot about 70% from 3, and generally demolished a pretty decent defensive team in Illinois. Joe Wieskamp had his best collegiate performance with 24 points on a perfect 8/8 shooting and 6/6 from 3, earning him freshman of the week honors.

This makes a 5 game win streak, the longest such conference winning streak since 2015-16, and is more conference wins than they had all last season. Even though it’s mostly been against the dregs of the league, there are really no easy games, and it’s nice to avoid the dick trip. This next stretch will be a real test.

Monday

#6 Michigan State Spartans 69, Maryland 55

DJ Carver: Anthony Cowan Jr.’s absolute no show tonight is insanely frustrating. You are the upperclassman on this team and looked like you were barely going through the motions for a majority of the game. He’s been doing that in first halves and lighting up second halves for a majority of the year, but he didn’t even bother tonight.

Mark Turgeon against ranked teams on the road: 0-16, -15.0ppg.

Mike Wazowski: Not good, but that is 3 losses at Cameron, 3 at Breslin, 2 each at Mackey, Hall of Calls, and whatever UVA’s barn is called. These are feared venues for a reason.

Totally fair to say Turgeon’s had the talent to win at least a few of these, though, and it’s not like he’s ever been especially close—wait, no, the MOV column says he’s been a possession away on a few occasions.

If you don’t win those games sometimes, you need way too much help to ever put conference hardware in the case, and being unable to win these games is a pretty good indicator you ain’t doing shit in the tourney, either. Looking at that MOV, he is for the most part moving in the approximately right direction...

...except against MSU. He should be making burnt offerings to Barry for setting MSU as a single play this year.

If you told me before the season that Nick Ward would go scoreless for the first time in his collegiate career and play all of like 8 minutes in a game when Josh Langford also didn’t play, I would’ve assumed a loss regardless of who MSU was playing.

To have that scenario and win pretty easily is a testament to the great performance from some role players in Kenny Goins and Aaron Henry, but despite a pretty typical stat line this was still another great exhibit for why Cassius Winston should get strong CPOY consideration.

All that said, an exact replay of this game flow won’t go as well on the road. Puddin: don’t get mad, get buckets.

Rutgers 76, Nebraska Cornhuskers 69

Despite a decent night from deep, Nebraska fell victim to the Curse of RAc, conceding an abysmal 36% on the offensive glass while nabbing just 23% of their own misses. Rutgers and the suddenly-hot Montez Mathis did what the Scarlet Knights do—miss a lot of shots, but kind of halve their way to the basket until a 24-footer becomes a 12-footer becomes a 6-footer becomes a putback dunk.

Myles Johnson took a pass from newly-returned Eugene Omoruyi and made a layup inside 2 minutes to break a tie, as Nebraska gave away an 8-point lead early in the second half and finally dropped a dogfight. It’s too early to call this a critical blow to the Huskers’ NCAA Tournament dreams—with Isaiah Copeland Jr. on the glass and James Palmer Jr. scoring in bunches, you can’t count ‘em out—but this loss won’t look good in March. Or now.

Jesse Collins: Nebraska lost to Rutgers while shooting less than 40% in the second half and running away from contact on the defensive end. Miles said he was worried that the MSU game would turn into a letdown loss on the road.

He was right. Rutgers wanted to win more than Nebraska did and here we are.

What a stupid loss. Stupid stupid loss.

BRT: Last night, I was driving from Denver back to Nebraska. As I listened to the game, I-80 got increasingly treacherous due to some bullshit called “freezing fog.” So, not only did I get to wonder if I was going to slide off the road or into a semi and die, I got to do it while listening to Nebraska lose to Rutgers. The only good thing about this was that my agitation at the game kept me in a useful state of heightened alertness. It was not my very best Monday night ever.

I did, eventually, drive far south in order to cut around the storm, adding substantial time onto my drive. And I stopped listening to the game with about seven minutes left. Hey, speaking of going south, that’s also what has happened to Nebraska’s tournament chances! Tourney teams don’t lose to Rutgers. This was bad and embarrassing, and certainly the type of thing that can derail the rest of a season. Just so, so disappointing.

Poll

Who has the best win of the weekend*?

This poll is closed

  • 40%
    wisconsin over Michigan
    (120 votes)
  • 8%
    Purdue over Indiana
    (25 votes)
  • 15%
    Michigan State over Maryland
    (45 votes)
  • 36%
    Rutgers over Nebraska—or anybody, really
    (108 votes)
298 votes total Vote Now

Poll

Who has the worst loss of the weekend*?

This poll is closed

  • 5%
    Rutgers, to Northwestern
    (16 votes)
  • 11%
    Michigan, to wisconsin
    (33 votes)
  • 4%
    Indiana, to Purdue
    (14 votes)
  • 78%
    Of COURSE it’s Nebraska to Rutgers—but competition is the whetstone of democracy.
    (224 votes)
287 votes total Vote Now