Power Rankings: Big Ten champ Indiana tops final list
1. Indiana, (26-5, 14-4) – As hard as it is to believe, Indiana, a program with five national championships, just won its first outright Big Ten crown since 1993. Some perspective: Freshman Yogi Ferrell wasn’t even born the last time.
Last week: No. 1
2. Michigan State, (24-7, 13-5) – Travis Trice compiled one the season’s most efficient all-around lines in Thursday’s win over Wisconsin. In just 19 minutes, the sophomore totaled five points, five rebounds, four assists and six steals.
Last week: No. 3
3. Ohio State, (23-7, 13-5) – Aaron Craft scored 14 and 15 points in two victories this past week. The combined 29 points matched the junior’s highest output in consecutive Big Ten games. He also totaled 29 points in his fourth and fifth Big Ten games in 2010-11.
Last week: No. 5
4. Michigan, (24-6, 12-6) – Random stat: Michigan, which entered Sunday’s game 17-0 at home, has gone 8-1 in Big Ten home games the last two seasons, with both losses coming in the finale to Indiana schools (Purdue in 2012; Indiana in 2013).
Last week: No. 2
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5. Wisconsin, (21-10, 12-6) – If the Big Ten awarded a most improved player, Traevon Jackson might be the runaway winner. This is a guy who’s gone from averaging 1.1 points in 5.4 minutes a year ago to being one of the Big Ten’s most clutch shooters. Watch the latest example.
Last week: No. 4
6. Iowa, (20-11, 9-9) – The Hawkeyes clinched their first 20-win season since 2005-06 and their first .500 conference season since 2006-07 (9-7) in Saturday’s 74-60 payback win over Nebraska.
Last week: No. 8
7. Minnesota, (20-11, 8-10) – With this past week’s two road defeats, at Nebraska and at Purdue, the Gophers finished the Big Ten slate with a 1-8 road record. The lone victory: An 84-67 win over Illinois on Jan. 9, the team’s first Big Ten road game.
Last week: No. 6
8. Purdue, (15-16, 8-10) – Four players have scored 30 or more points in Big Ten play, and two of them are Boilers: A.J. Hammons (30 vs. Indiana) and Terone Johnson (32 vs. Michigan). Johnson’s 32-point effort Wednesday marked the most in conference play.
Last week: No. 10
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9. Illinois, (21-11, 8-10) – The Illini closed out the season scoring 55 points in both defeats this week. Even more troubling, the frontcourt tandem of Nnanna Egwu and Sam McLaurin combined to score 11 points in the two losses.
Last week: No. 7
10. Nebraska, (14-17, 5-13) – Nobody shoots more 3’s than Ray Gallegos, so he encounters steep peaks and valleys. For example, in the last three games, the guard is 15-of-32 (49 percent) from deep, this following an 11-of-53 stretch (21 percent).
Last week: No. 10
11. Penn State, (10-20, 2-16) – Thursday night’s 66-59 win at Northwestern marked Penn State’s first Big Ten road victory in 18 tries and its first since March 6, 2011, when it won at Minnesota in the Big Ten finale.
Last week: No. 11
12. Northwestern, (13-18, 4-14) – Alex Marcotullio is a late bright spot for struggling Northwestern. The senior erupted for a career-high 22 points Thursday and added 11 Sunday. Add it all up, and the week’s 33 points account for 22 percent of Marcotullio’s season scoring.
Last week: No. 12
|About Brent Yarina||BTN.com web editor Brent Yarina covers football and men’s basketball for BTN.com. He writes the popular uniform feature “Clothes Call,” which also focuses on the latest cosmetic changes across Big Ten arenas and stadiums. Read all of his work here. You can subscribe to Yarina’s RSS feed and follow him on Twitter @BTNBrentYarina.|