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Big Ten Bracketology: Did we learn ANYTHING this week?

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The importance of Penn State holding onto a 4-seed, wondering who shakes out onto a 6-line, and a look at the Indiana-Rutgers-Purdue-Minnesota bubblefest.

NCAA Basketball: Penn State at Indiana Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

So. What did we learn?

Nothing? Good. Let’s hit the projections and see where, after a week in which a couple games would’ve played Minnesota back into the conversation and Rutgers safely into the tournament, there’s just as much uncertainty in the Big Ten as ever.

Big Ten Bracketology

B1G Observations

  • Somehow, Maryland has stayed on a 2-line. I don’t get it either, but at this point you’re just fueling the fires of conspiracy by suggesting anything else is at work.
  • Penn State stays on the right side of the 4/5 divide yet again. Given the potential matchup changes—from Vermont (KP 72) to a Northern Iowa (KP 45) or Providence (KP 49)—from a 4-seed to a 5-seed, their home matchup with Michigan State looks like it’ll be crucial to a 25-spot difference in first-round opponent.
  • Speaking of which, Michigan State remains the team no 1-seed wants to see on their side of the bracket. Though seeing if a hot-shooting UNI or Liberty could catch them on a bad day would be interesting...
  • I’m surprised Lunardi still had Michigan on a 5-line after the disaster against wisconsin last night. As we get into the mushy middle of the conference, though, any of these teams seem like they could lose a 6-11 matchup with the best of ‘em.
  • That includes Ohio State, about whom I still have nothing to say.
  • Let’s just take a look at what Jerry Palm thinks of wisconsin, and...
  • Don’t make me watch an Iowa-Liberty showdown, NCAA Tournament Selection Committee. Please. Don’t put me in that position. Though I’m very here for the USA Today suggestion of Iowa-Northern Iowa [stop ducking the Panthers, Franny!], I doubt it’d ever happen.
  • Illinois versus Texas Tech would be an interesting contrast in styles and a little throwback to Brad Underwood’s Big XII days. I hope the Orange Krush manage to take over whatever arena they’re playing in. Just not sure where they’ll find 25 students with all that free time.
  • I know, I know, I can’t believe Indiana is still on the right side of the bubble after last night [see Candystripes’ meltdown for some schadenfreude, Purdue fan]. But Lunardi and Palm have them clinging to life. Somehow. Arizona by 30.
  • The Rutgers Scarlet Knights have tumbled, by Joe Lunardi’s estimation, into the “Last Four Byes” section. On a three-game slide, with a home game against Maryland and a road trip to not-quite-dead-yet Purdue...uh...better get a first-round Big Ten Tournament W just to be sure, Knightbros.
  • Look at Purdue, all cozied up on a 3-line in the NIT. At this point, if you’re a Purdue fan—do you prefer getting a wounded conference champion who loses their auto-bid in the conference tournament or a mediocre P5 team like Oregon State who have Tres Tinkle and not much else?
  • Same question, Minnesota. Except DRatings has you somewhere in the vicinity of a trip to Reno to see Hair Gel and the Nevada Wolf Pack! You lucky guys.

Poll

How many Big Ten teams make the NCAA Tournament?

This poll is closed

  • 8%
    8—Indiana and Rutgers fall off the bubble.
    (30 votes)
  • 17%
    9—Rutgers makes it in.
    (61 votes)
  • 11%
    9—Indiana makes it in.
    (41 votes)
  • 37%
    10—Indiana and Rutgers survive, Purdue left out.
    (130 votes)
  • 7%
    10—Rutgers and...Purdue?!
    (25 votes)
  • 3%
    10—Indiana and Purdue remain, I guess?
    (11 votes)
  • 8%
    11—Indiana, Rutgers, and Purdue all survive.
    (31 votes)
  • 2%
    11—Indiana, Rutgers, and MINNESOTA OUTTA NOWHERE.
    (7 votes)
  • 1%
    12—let’s get weird and chalky in conference tournaments.
    (5 votes)
  • 2%
    OTHER—YOU LEFT SOMETHING VERY IMPORTANT OFF, YOU BIG DUMB IDIOT
    (8 votes)
349 votes total Vote Now

Weekend Viewing Interests

DJ’s got your basketball previews coming tomorrow morning, so I will, instead, highlight my own games here:

  • Detroit-Mercy Titans at IUPUI Jaguars (11am, ESPN3): KP 306 at KP 325. Hell yeah.
  • St. Francis (NY) Terriers at Central Connecticut Blue Devils (12pm, NEC Front Row): You haven’t lived until you’ve watched a game on a streaming app that comes on garden-variety Roku platforms and is actually of pretty decent quality. Add to that KP 313 visiting KP 346? We got us a stew cookin’.
  • Delaware State Hornets at MD-Eastern Shore Hawks (3pm, no TV): KP 347 at KP 349. And we’re being denied this treat. It’s a damn shame, is what it is.
  • SE Missouri St. Hawks at UT Martin Skyhawks (4pm, ESPN+): KP 338 at KP 340 is the best I can find you in terms of televised games between the two worst possible teams in Kenpom. Unless you want...
  • Fordham Rams at Saint Joseph’s Hawks (12pm, ESPN+):

...nightmare fuel.

Have a great weekend.