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Big Ten Basketball: Wednesday Open Thread

Is This the Year?

NCAA Basketball: Purdue at Northwestern
Boo Buie with the no legs dribble into the paint
David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

Tuesday, February 14th

Penn State Nittany Lions 93, Illinois Fighting Illini 81

MaximumSam: Penn State and Jalen Pickett went full net burning. Pickett dropped 41, including 10-11 from two, and team as a whole shot an EFG of 68%. They led pretty much the whole way and Illinois was chasing from the jump. A forgettable night for the Illini, though Luke Goode made his first basket of the season after returning from injury. Given Illinois’ obsession with shooting threes, his return can only help.

BoilerUp89: Jalen Pickett scored his 2000th point and kept going, setting this seasons scoring record in a game at 41. Don't look now but PSU has Minnesota and Ohio State up next. If they win those two they'd be at 8-9 in B1G play with two home games left.

Nebraska Cornhuskers 82, Rutgers Scarlet Knights 72

MaximumSam: Hey, if you had the Huskers shooting an EFG of 69% and averaging 1.2 points a possession at the RAC, well, play the Powerball. They had a great night, but We Need To Talk About Rutgers. They’ve dropped three straight since losing Mawot Mag to a knee injury, and this was their worst performance yet. They are playing themselves onto the bubble, and the remaining schedule isn’t brutal but does have three road games.

BoilerUp89: Find someone who loves you as much as Keisei Tominaga loves playing basketball for the Cornhuskers. Rutgers needs a few more wins to secure their bid and need to stop playing with their food. It was the usual weak non-conference schedule for Pikiell so they have to get to 10 B1G wins.

Wisconsin Badgers 64, Michigan Wolverines 59

MaximumSam: No fisticuffs tonight, but we did get another episode of Wisconsin getting a double digit lead then basically stop playing. They went up 54-42 with 10:26 left. Ten minutes later, they were up 57-55 with 48 seconds left. Very impressive to score 3 points over a ten minute span and still get the win. Midwest efficiency.

Wisconsin misses last 12 shots, no made baskets in last 10:47(!) of the game, wins by 5.

- commenter IU in VA -BoilerUp89

Wednesday, February 15th

#27 Indiana Hoosiers (18-7, 9-5) at #43 Northwestern Wildcats (18-7, 9-5), 8 pm, BTN

MaximumSam: The Hoosiers and Wildcats both with identical records and wins over #1 Purdue. Just as we all predicted (please don’t check those predictions). Northwestern won the first matchup, 84-83, despite Jalen Hood-Schifino dropping 33. They did make life difficult for TJD, and plan to again. The main issue - can Indiana make outside shots? Torvik goes Cats, 69-68.

BoilerUp89: Indiana and Northwestern are playing for sole possession of 2nd place and to be honest their resumes are really similar. Both have a blowout non conference loss to a P6 conference leader (Kansas and Pitt). Both have a home win over Purdue. Both have a non conference loss to a likely at large team (Arizona and Auburn). And Northwestern beat IU in their first meeting. So why is Indiana considered so much better than Northwestern?