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College Basketball Bracketology: Big Ten, NCAA Tournament Projections

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It’s January 15, and someone thinks TWELVE B1G teams will make the NCAA Tournament.

NCAA Basketball: Minnesota at Michigan State Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports

So...is the Big Ten actually good at basketball?

I watched Ohio State and Iowa plow through Nebraska and Northwestern last night, giving me adequate time to appreciate Luka Garza, as reports rolled in that wisconsin had upset ranked Maryland, further confusing the top of the Big Ten rankings.

The conference is, top-to-bottom, rating out as the best in college basketball—a full 1.4 points in AdjEM higher, per Kenpom, than the Big XII and far outstripping both the ACC and SEC. But will that translate to NCAA Tournament success?

Maybe not, but it’s sure goosing the bracketology field chock-full of Big Ten squads.

Big Ten Bracketology

B1G Observations

  • Unless they can avoid the bed-shittings at the various and sundry tough Indiana gyms, looks like Michigan State can just settle into the 3-line and whatever East Coast whipping boy gets spit out at them. Could be worse.
  • Most of these projections were before Maryland lost their damn minds last night, so expect to see picks closer to the 5-line than the 4-seed.
  • I’m confident Ohio State are decent, but I have no idea if they’re actually 5-seed worthy. I could see them being a popular upset pick, especially if they get stuck playing a Virginia team hot off a First Four win.
  • Michigan should just hope that Jon Teske plays a team with zero big men. Right? i can’t be bothered to learn whether any of the semi-dangerous mid- to high-majors they’re playing have those. Let’s say...probably.
  • After that second-half ass-whooping last night, Iowa continues to rise in the estimations of Lunardi and Dobbertean. Or at least I think that’s what those little arrows mean. All it’s gonna take is one team that closes down the perimeter well, and Iowa’s in trouble. I’d enjoy seeing Utah or Texas Tech shut them down.
  • Originally I’d written Penn State first-round opponent in the SBNation bracketology as “Penn State” and that really feels like an accurate representation of their entire season.
  • wisconsin could be anywhere from the 7- to the 10-seed and I will be simultaneously blase and infuriated toward the entire proceeding.
  • I’ll just be blase toward an Indiana seeding. Just waiting for Duke to eviscerate them if they make it to the second round.
  • I am positively terrified by the final score of a Rutgers-Saint Mary’s first round matchup. The Pikemen will just tackle every Gael on the court, shoot 24%, and win 43-38.
  • Marquette 80, Illinois 79. M-U-Rah-Rah!
  • Purdue got its signature win. Never mind what it does away from West Lafayette—that’ll be enough. Here’s a 10-seed and first-round upset of some random SEC team.
  • Why is Minnesota still on this list? Daniel Oturu is delightful, but that’s about it.
  • Northwestern can still get a CBI invite, right?

Poll

How many teams will the Big Ten get in the NCAA Tournament?

This poll is closed

  • 11%
    12
    (56 votes)
  • 16%
    11
    (78 votes)
  • 36%
    10
    (172 votes)
  • 21%
    9
    (101 votes)
  • 9%
    8
    (43 votes)
  • 4%
    7 or fewer
    (20 votes)
470 votes total Vote Now