@BTNStatsGuys: Big Ten tourney seed scenarios entering Wednesday

@BTNStatsGuys: Big Ten tourney seed scenarios entering Wednesday

As we move along in the final week of the regular season, Wednesday features a pair of Big Ten basketball games.

Before the action tips off, here’s the latest look at Big Ten tournament seed scenarios entering Wednesday evening.

Things becoming clearer among the teams that are in the top 10 in the standings while the bottom is still a complete mess. Tiebreakers will likely play a big part so for most of them I just put how a bye or double bye can be clinched along with best and worst case scenarios.

Michigan State’s win on Tuesday gave them a share of the Big Ten title and a top 2 seed in New York. It also means that Purdue can’t get the #1 seed and are locked into a Friday evening game, just don’t know if it’s as the #2 or #3 seed. Ohio State’s win means that the #1 seed will be decided this weekend as both the Buckeyes and Spartans hit the road. The Buckeyes can be anywhere from #1 to #3. Nebraska’s win over Indiana makes it a 2-team race with Michigan for the 4 seed and the final double bye. Even though the bottom 4 teams are set, they can all finish somewhere between 11-14 despite the losses from Illinois and Rutgers on Tuesday.

I’ve broken it into 4 tiers. The first tier is the 3 teams fighting for the Big Ten Title. The second tier is teams 4-7, which have all clinched at least a single bye. The Huskers and Wolverines are the only teams that can clinch a double bye from this group but 3 different teams could finish 5th and 6th. The 3rd tier is teams 8-10 which currently have a single bye. The Wisconsin-Northwestern game on Thursday will be for the #9 seed unless a crazy scenario happens (detailed under Wisconsin and Northwestern’s scenarios below). The final tier is the bottom 4 teams that are locked into playing on Wednesday. I won’t put every scenario since there are several for the bottom 4 teams so I’ll just list the seeding ranges for each team. I’ll break the bottom down more in depth later in the week.

The teams are listed by their current place in the Big Ten Standings (tiebreakers included)

1. Michigan State (15-2)

  • Already clinched double bye
  • Clinches #1 seed with win at Wisconsin OR Ohio State loss at Indiana
  • Clinches #2 seed with loss at Wisconsin + Ohio State win at Indiana
  • Seed range: 1 or 2

2. Ohio State (14-3)

  • Already clinched double bye
  • Clinches #1 seed with win at Indiana + Michigan State loss at Wisconsin
  • Clinches #2 seed with win at Indiana + Michigan State win at Wisconsin OR with a loss + a Purdue loss
  • Clinches #3 seed with loss at Indiana + 2 Purdue wins
  • Seed range: 1-3

3. Purdue (13-3)

  • Already clinched double bye
  • Can’t clinch #1 seed but can clinch share of Big Ten Title with 2 wins and a Michigan State loss at Wisconsin
  • Clinches #2 seed with wins at Illinois and home vs Minnesota + Ohio State loss at Indiana
  • Clinches #3 seed with a loss OR Ohio State win at Indiana
  • Seed range: 2 or 3

—————————————-

4. Nebraska (12-5)

  • Clinches #4 seed and double bye with win vs Penn State OR a Michigan loss
  • Clinches #5 seed with loss vs Penn State + 2 Michigan wins
  • Seed range: 4 or 5

5. Michigan (11-5)

  • Clinches #4 seed and double bye with wins at Penn State and at Maryland + Nebraska loss vs Penn State
  • Clinches #5 seed with 2 wins + Nebraska win OR split in final 2 games
  • Can also clinch #5 seed even with 2 losses if Nebraska beats Penn State
  • Clinches #6 seed with 2 losses + Penn State win at Nebraska
  • Seed range: 4-6

6. Penn State (9-7)

  • Can’t clinch double bye. Can only finish as high as 5th
  • Clinches #5 seed with wins vs Michigan and at Nebraska + Michigan loss at Maryland
  • Clinches #6 seed with 2 wins + Michigan win at Maryland OR split final 2 games + Indiana loss vs Ohio State
  • Clinches #7 seed with 2 losses OR split final 2 games + Indiana win vs. Ohio State
  • Seed range: 5-7

7. Indiana (9-8)

  • Clinches #6 seed with win vs Ohio State + Penn State loss OR just Penn State losing twice
  • Clinches #7 seed with loss + Penn State win
  • Seed range: 6 or 7

—————————————-

8. Maryland (8-9)

  • Clinched #8 seed. Will open next Thursday at Noon against #9 seed

9. Northwestern (6-10)

  • Clinches #9 seed with win vs Wisconsin
  • Can also clinch #9 seed with loss vs Wisconsin but path is long: beat Iowa, Wisconsin loss to Michigan State, Purdue loses twice, Nebraska and Michigan each win twice
  • Clinches #10 seed with losses vs Wisconsin and at Iowa
  • Seed range: 9-10

10. Wisconsin (6-10)

  • Clinched single bye
  • Can clinch #9 seed with wins at Northwestern and home vs Michigan State OR with a split in final 2 games and 2 Northwestern losses
  • Can also clinch #9 seed with just a win at Northwestern as long as the following scenario doesn’t happen: Loss vs Michigan State, Northwestern win at Iowa, Purdue loses twice, Nebraska and Michigan each win twice
  • Clinches #10 seed with loss at Northwestern
  • Seed range: 9-10

—————————————-

11. Iowa (3-13)

  • Seed range: 11-14

12. Minnesota (3-13)

  • Seed range: 11-14

13. Illinois (3-13)

  • Seed range: 11-14

14. Rutgers (3-14)

  • Seed range: 11-14
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