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Big Ten Basketball: Wednesday Open Thread

Sparty Needs a Win. Nebrasketball Mania Continues.

Syndication: Lansing State Journal
Wait what’s our record again?
Nick King/Lansing State Journal / USA TODAY NETWORK

Tuesday, December 6th

Illinois 85, Texas 78 (OT)

MaximumSam: How ‘bout them Illini? It was not the usual formula for them, as Terrence Shannon had just four points at the end of regulation, but Matthew Mayer went 8/10 for 21, including five three pointers. They did a great job on Marcus Carr, who scored just 9 points on 14 shots. Oh, and Terrence Shannon struggling? Never fear, he dropped 12 in the overtime to get Illinois the win, dropping Texas from the ranks of the undefeated.

Thumpasaurus: This is the second time the fighting illini have spent half of a neutral site game against a top 10 team just dicking around playing something that has nothing to do with basketball, and then found another gear with their backs against the wall and pulled out the win.

He Was a High School QB: Let’s see. An Illini team that is very elite on defense and pretty much a disorganized mess on offense hoping one exceptional talented player can make up for not having a plan? This sounds familiar for some reason. Have we ever seen an Illini team like that?

Underwood is 12-5 in his last 17 against top ten teams. We need to figure out how to play a top ten team in the NCAA round of 32. Marcus Carr remains winless against Illinois

BoilerUp89: Huge win for the Illini, who despite their two losses looks like a top 10 quality team. I’m not sure why they got into a rugby match with Texas since Texas is used to playing that style, but it worked out for them.

Wisconsin 64, Maryland 59

MaximumSam: Sorry Kevin Willard, you have to go through getting Wisconsified at the Kohl Center, just like everyone else. This one was fairly nip and tuck until Wiscy went on a late run to put it away. Jahmir Young got his, but Hakim Hart and Donta Scott combined to go 5-24, which is, uh, not going to be enough.

BoilerUp89: You can’t make me watch Wisconsin basketball outside of when they play Purdue. We all have a limited amount of time on this earth and Wisconsin’s basketball games are not much watch TV.

Duke 74, Iowa 62

MaximumSam: Duke, regrettably, has won its battle with the Big Ten. They pretty much whipped Iowa, who couldn’t get much of anything going. Kris Murray was back to being Kroger Brand Keegan, and the team couldn’t shoot straight. Three point shooting might be a bit of an issue for the Hawkeyes. They’ve dropped to 195th shooting percentage from three - they were 45th last year.

BoilerUp89: Starting to wonder if that Seton Hall win was a mirage and Iowa isn’t actually that good this year? Seton Hall appears to have taken a giant step backwards this year, and outside of that game Iowa doesn’t have a good win (unless you think Clemson is good and I don’t). The Hawkeyes still have a good offense, but are struggling from three point range. They are going to have to start making some if they want to open up Big Ten defenses.

Wednesday, December 7th

#52 Michigan State Spartans (5-4) at #46 Penn State Nittany Lions (6-2), 5:30, BTN

MaximumSam: Sparty takes to the road needing a win, but Penn State isn’t going to just give them one. It should be an interesting battle of guards. Jalen Pickett has been exceptional, leading the team in points and carrying a near 4-1 assist to turnover ratio. A.J. Hoggard has not been exceptional - shooting 40% from 2 and 28% from three isn’t going to cut it. That said, Sparty’s road has been a lot tougher than PSU’s, and Hoggard has seen much better defenses. Torvik tips this one to the Nits, 69-64.

BoilerUp89: It’s still very early in the season, but this feels like a game neither team will want to drop. Tougher conference opponents are waiting and you don’t want to dig yourself an early hole. Can Sparty figure out how to play offense without Malik Hall? Will the five Nittany Lion seniors continue to play outstanding now that we head into conference play? Expect Penn State to take a lot of threes as they have all season. If they make them at the 40% clip they have so far this season, another loss seems likely for Michigan State.

#137 Hofstra Pride (6-3) at #5 Purdue Boilermakers (8-0), 6 pm, BTN+

MaximumSam: Hofstra has a Dude in Aaron Estrada. But Zach Edey is still tall. Purdue 82-64.

BoilerUp89: This game is on Big Ten minus, so I won’t talk about the game. Instead I’ll show you guys this tweet. More of them on the BoilerBall twitter feed. Excellent content

#81 Nebraska Cornhuskers (6-3) at #14 Indiana Hoosiers (7-1), 7:30 pm, BTN

MaximumSam: The Unstoppable Nebrasketball Cornhuskers take their roadshow to Indiana, who can only hope to keep up. Derrick Walker is a behemoth underneath the basket, and Keisei Tominaga is a flame thrower from the outside. Sam “The Weasel” Griesel has been efficient from all areas. The Hoosiers better bring their hard hats. Torvik, somehow, has Indiana winning 72-61. Probably a computer glitch.

BoilerUp89: Nebraska is coming off a big, emotional win. Indiana is coming off a disappointing, frustrating loss. Maybe Nebraska will be able to copy Rutgers game play and dare Indiana to make threes, but I suspect that the talent disparity shows up in this one.