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BASKETBALL STARTS TODAY! Big Ten Hoops Schedule, Open Thread

Was this all a tremendous mistake? PROBABLY! But let’s talk about Big Ten basketball anyway.

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NCAA Basketball: Ohio State at Iowa
Low-key the thing I’m most excited to see: How Frantrums happen with a mask on.
Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Well, would you look at that. Turns out we released our Super-Prestigious Preseason All-Big Ten team just in time...because we got us some games!

Of course, it’s worth noting that this season, like college football, remains a terrible idea. Exhibit A: Penn State Nittany Lions’ opening-day game with Drexel Dragons has already been canceled. And, I mean, is having about 7-8% of all the basketball teams across the country not able to play...a bad thing? It feels like a bad thing.

That’s an excellent tweet, by the way, just for unfurling across more than my entire screen.

Enough of all that. The Rutgers Scarlet Knights women and the hopefully-immortal C. Vivian Stringer are the first to kick off Big Ten hoops across all landscapes and channels when they host the Monmouth Hawks at the RAC on BTN Plus at 10am CT (now! or a couple minutes ago! sorry—damn students wanting help on their projects).

After that, Nebraska’s finally settled on a non-conference schedule—we think; here’s a primer—and will get the men’s slate up and running on BTN at 11am.

Your full Big Ten schedule! Maybe!* Other Games of Interest! This is a basketball open thread for the next couple days—have at it.

Big Ten Basketball Schedule

*Games are subject to change and, particularly down lower on the list, probably already have! I did the best I could to keep up, but there’s just no fucking point.

Wednesday, November 25

{WBB} Monmouth at Rutgers

10am | BTN+

McNeese State Cowboys at Nebraska Cornhuskers

11am | BTN | UNL -14.5

Did you know I previewed Nebrasketball? It’s TRUE!

{WBB} Central Michigan Chippewas at #25 Michigan Wolverines

11:30am | BTN+

{WBB} Eastern Kentucky Colonels at #16 Indiana Hoosiers

12:30pm | BTN+

North Carolina A&T Aggies at #8 Illinois Fighting Illini

1pm | BTN | IL -27 | O/U 146.5

I mean, Illini by a million. Kofi Cockburn may literally eat an NC A&T player. Ayo Dosunmu shouldn’t play a minute of the second half.

But mostly this is to let you know I have more previews and hot takes below, in the Other Games of Interest section. And that’s why you’re reading this, right? For my witty takes and stunning good looks?

One of those, at least?


Illinois State Redbirds at #23 Ohio State Buckeyes

1pm | BTN+ | OSU -18 | O/U 138.5

I came here prepared to say nice things about the Redbirds, but turns out it’s been three full seasons since they were really shittily left out of the NCAA Tournament with a 28-7 record in favor of noted belles USC, Nevada, and Providence.

They haven’t been in the Top 200 of Kenpom for a couple years now.

Old Dominion Monarchs at Maryland Terrapins

1pm | BTN+ | MD -7.5 | O/U 132.5

The Monarchs grind games out with a slow pace and potent defense...odd how long into this game DJ Carver first calls for Mark Turgeon’s firing?


When will DJ call for Turge to be fired?

This poll is closed

  • 34%
    Before the under-16
    (15 votes)
  • 13%
    Before the under-12
    (6 votes)
  • 6%
    Before the under-8
    (3 votes)
  • 11%
    Before the under-4
    (5 votes)
  • 34%
    By halftime
    (15 votes)
44 votes total Vote Now

N.C. Central Eagles at #5 Iowa Hawkeyes

3pm | BTN | Iowa -25 | O/U 150.5

See Kofi Cockburn, re: Luka Garza and the Eagles’ frontcourt.

There’s no reason for him to be on the court save for a National Player of the Year campaign and his father’s massive ego—tune in and listen for Frank screaming like an AAU Dad lunatic. Apparently Jordan Bohannon’s cousin or brother or something also plans to make noise or scream obscenities or something?

So Iowa basketball appears to be handling success well.

Eastern Michigan Eagles at #13 Michigan State Spartans

5pm | BTN | MSU -21 | O/U 136


Liberty Flames vs. Purdue Boilermakers

Space Coast Challenge, Melbourne, FL
5pm | CBSSN | Purdue -9.5 | O/U 123.5

Gross, Purdue. Even if you got paired against the Flames...gross.

This is probably a decent shot for Purdue to establish itself and play a Big Ten-style game. The Flames are the second-slowest team in basketball (even worse than wisconsin!), with former UVA associate HC Ritchie McKay bringing the wrestle-ball pack-line to Lynchburg.

Do not watch this game. I beg you.

{WBB} Coppin State Eagles at Penn State Nittany Lions

5pm | BTN+

Sacred Heart Pioneers at #24 Rutgers Scarlet Knights

6pm | BTN+ | no line?

I might’ve mentioned that we previewed Rutgers, too. Did I?

Green Bay Phoenix at Minnesota Golden Gophers

6pm | BTN+ | Minn -21 | O/U 136

Green Bay plays fast, stupid, fun basketball. Why not?

{WBB} Northern Iowa Panthers at Iowa

6:30pm | BTN+

Tennessee Tech Golden Eagles at Indiana Hoosiers

7pm | BTN | Indiana -22 | O/U 138

The Tenn Tech coach is positive for COVID, by the way, so this all seems absolutely fine. We definitely need to play this game.

{WBB} Indiana State Sycamores at Illinois

7pm | BTN+

Eastern Illinois Panthers at #7 Wisconsin Badgers

9pm | BTN | wisc -19 | O/U 133.5

Time to turn on, tune in, and drop out of whatever professional engagements you have! We’ve got a basketball podcast (and another on the way today), our Super Prestigious And Not Half-Assed Preseason All-B1G Team, and surely more sporadic content on the way as our teams win and we want to talk shit about it.

The OTE Way!

More games below. Open thread now.

Other (Men’s, Sorry, I’m a Pig*) Games of Interest

* And/or this was a lot of work already because they keep fucking shifting and canceling and rescheduling games over and over and over.

East Tennessee State Buccaneers vs. Abilene Christian Wildcats

10am | FloHoops ($) | ACU -1.5 | O/U 137
Gulf Coast Showcase, Estero, FL

This one’s only included because it’s the first live men’s game of the year! The Bucs were decent last year (KP 56) and would’ve qualified for the NCAA Tournament; while Kenpom doesn’t like them as much this year (163), they’re met in this one by an Abilene team that’s supposedly improved on last year.

Will I pay $12.50 for a monthlong subscription to FloHoops? THERE’S A FAIR CHANCE.

Florida College Collegians Or Something at South Florida Bulls

10:30am | ESPN+ | no line, probably an NAIA team or something

Hey, did you know the University of Tampa used to have a football team? They were independent at the D-I level for three years before they folded entirely in 1974.

That’s infinitely more exciting than this game, but if you don’t want to add ANOTHER pay service to your roster (seriously, the wife learned I pay for Peacock, and she is NOT PLEASED), probably the first you can watch.

George Washington Colonials at Navy Midshipmen

11am | CBSSN | Navy -2
Veterans Classic, Annapolis, MD

Oakland Golden Grizzlies at Xavier Musketeers

11am | FS1 | X -18.5 | O/U 139

I just love Greg Kampe’s sweaters. Only reason for this note.

Stony Brook Seawolves at Bryant Bulldogs

12pm | NEC Front Row | Bryant -2

Download NEC Front Row on Roku or whatever. It is surprisingly decent-quality broadcasting and picture quality for absolutely goddamn nothing. I interviewed for a gig at Bryant (didn’t get it, but that’s because I’m from Minnesota and there’s a pandemic going on, or at least so they told me in a very nice rejection email shut up), and in the interview I referenced watching Bryant-Central Connecticut on NEC Front Row. They were impressed that I even knew where it was.

College basketball opens so many doors.

I mean, not TOO many, because I’m still functionally underemployed, but you get the point.

Memphis Tigers vs. St Marys-CA Gaels

1pm | ESPN2 | Mem -5.5 | O/U 134.5
Bad Boy Mowers Classic, Sioux Falls, SD

One of the projected fastest teams in the country in Memphis (AdjT 12), one of the slowest and most physical, maddening, and just so goddamn pasty in St. Mary’s (AdjT 354).

This should be...interesting?

Also, never forget that rather than spread COVID to the Bahamas or Jamaica or wherever Bad Boy Mowerz in Paradise was supposed to be held, they’re going to the COVID Hotspot and Pray-Away-The-Gay-Palooza that is Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

Nothing like catching COVID and having to stay in the Super 8 Motel off I-229! L I V I N

Drake Bulldogs at Kansas State Wildcats

1pm | ESPNU | KSU -5.5 | O/U 133

MY BULLDOGS are without their physical presence inside, the traitor Liam Robbins having fucked off to Minnesota and left HIS BROTHERS in the lurch. Never mind that. Transfer forwards ShanQuan Hemphill of Green Bay and Darnell Brodie of Seton Hall should be instant boosts on the wing and in the middle, hopefully giving frosh forwards Jordan Kwiencinski of Loyola Academy and Issa Samake of Des Moines’ Grand View Christian time, like Robbins needed, to learn the intricacies and size of college hoops.

The backcourt is where the Bulldogs will make noise. The trio of guards Roman Penn, D.J. Wilkins, and Garrett Sturtz are gonna move the ball and frustrate the shit outta you, and backup G Noah Thomas has some of the best lettuce in the game.

And, of course, none of this is complete without Tremell Murphy, the 6’6” slashing forward who I’m hoping can recover from injury and take a big step forward. Coach ‘em up, Darien DeVries. WOOF WOOF, WEAR THE D.

Fairfield Stags at Providence Friars

1pm | FS1 | Prov -20 | O/U 127

Oklahoma State Cowboys at Texas-Arlington Mavericks

3pm | ESPN | OKSt -7 | O/U 138.5

Always a fan of major conference teams going on the road locally for a non-conference game. The Pokes should have the goods to get it done, and all I know about UTA is that 3-4 years ago Gophers fans thought their basketball team was good because they beat the Mavericks.

Spoiler: They were still a shit Minnesota basketball team.

UMBC Retrievers at Georgetown Hoyas

3pm | FS1

Battle of the Good Boys.

Western Kentucky Hilltoppers vs. Northern Iowa Panthers

3:30pm | ESPNU | WKU -3 | O/U 140.5
Bad Boy Mowers Classic, Sioux Falls, SD

Nothing like a randomly made-up game to fill the absence of...I think it was Baylor Bears dropping out? I hope UNI just got a “u up, bb” text.

Anyway, enjoy this game we were denied when the 2020 CBI was canceled. Two potent offenses on display here, but the pace will be glacial.

Western Michigan Broncos at Butler Bulldogs

5pm | FS1 | Butler -19 | O/U 132

#18 Arizona State Sun Devils vs. Rhode Island Rams

6pm | ESPN | ASU -7.5 | O/U 151.5
Bad Boy Mowers Classic, Sioux Falls, SD

This game was fabricated yesterday and...I mean, I would prefer ranked Arizona State against a frisky mid-major in the Rams. This should be a fast, up-and-down game.

SIU-Edwardsville Cougars vs. Saint Louis Billikens

6pm | ESPN+ | SLU -24.5 | O/U 136

Here, learn about the Bronze Boot. (NO, REALLY. A SOCCER RIVALRY TROPHY.)

St. Peter’s Peacocks at St. John’s Red Storm

6pm | FS2 | SJU -10.5 | O/U 140.5

The Red Storm still a trainwreck after it turned out no one wanted to coach there?

I’m genuinely asking.

California Golden Bears at Oregon State Beavers

6pm | Pac-12+ | ORSt -2 | O/U 136.5

A non-conference in-conference game! (Colorado State dropped out with COVID, and now these two titans of the Pacific will meet in what promises to be unwatchable basketball.

I cannot wait to find my PAC-12 Networks subscription.

South Dakota Coyotes vs. Colorado Buffaloes

7pm | ESPN+ | Colo -16 | O/U 144.5
Little Apple Classic, Manhattan, KS

Honestly, this is an excellent bubble they constructed in the Little Apple:

  • Kansas State (Big XII, KP 114)
  • Colorado (Pac-12, KP 62)
  • Drake (MVC, KP 158)
  • South Dakota (Summit, KP 208)

There’s a piece to be written about what this should’ve looked like around the Midwest—I would watch the shit, for example, out of this four-team round-robin tournament:

  • Northwestern Wildcats (B1G, KP 70)
  • DePaul Blue Demons (Big East, KP 85)
  • Loyola-Chicago Ramblers (MVC, KP 47)
  • UIC Flames (Horizon, KP 265)

Doesn’t NEED to be at a neutral site, but it’d be fun if it was! I’ve documented somehwere in the not-too-distant past the existence of the old Chicago Holiday Classic or whatever it was called, where Northwestern would lose to Loyola and Bradley and whomever else at a stupid four-team tournament at the All-State Center in Rosemont.

Here’s the hint: It ain’t the teams that are the problem.

Central Connecticut Blue Devils at UConn Huskies

7pm | FS1 | UConn -27 | O/U 142

Clemson Tigers at Mississippi State Bulldogs

7:30pm | CBSSN | Clem -4.5 | O/U 134.5
Space Coast Challenge, Melbourne, FL

#3 Villanova Wildcats vs. Boston College Eagles

8:30pm | ESPN | Vill -13 | O/U 144
2K Empire Classic, Uncasville, CT

VCU Rams vs. Utah State Aggies

8:30pm | ESPN2 | USU -4 | O/U 135.5

Just time to remind you of one of my favorite college basketball things:

Arkansas-Pine Bluff Lions at Marquette Golden Eagles

9pm | FS1 | MU -30 | O/U 135


#22 UCLA Bruins at San Diego State Aztecs

9:30pm | CBSSN | UCLA -3 | O/U 131

Seattle Redhawks at Portland Pilots

10pm | WCC Network, maybe? | no line

The whole trainwreck of a schedule might be here?

Open thread. Rules, hypothetically, apply.