Latest Big Ten Geeks News

Big Ten Geeks: Here Come the Badgers

Indiana was looking like they had turned a corner, building a small lead at the Kohl Center early in the second half. As has happened lately to Tom Crean’s bunch, things fell apart and Wisconsin picked up yet another B1G victory. Let’s look at how it happened.

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Big Ten Geeks: Mackey No Longer Impenetrable

Michigan picked up its first road win of the season in a hard fought two-point victory over Purdue. This was a mild upset, as Vegas had the homestanding Boilermakers favored by five points and KenPom had Purdue by four. This outcome certainly changes the season outlook for both squads.

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Big Ten Geeks: Gophers Bounce Back

After the injury to Trevor Mbakwe, I fully expected this to be somewhat of a “what if?” season for the Gophers. And that certainly appeared to be the case through four conference games, as Minnesota stumbled to a 0-4 start in the Big Ten. But Tubby Smith’s team has responded by winning three straight games, most recently in a stomping of Northwestern at The Barn. And although Minnesota had dropped some close games over its losing streak, the turnaround isn’t simply a matter of fortunate ball bounces:

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Big Ten Geeks: Illinois' Offense Still Broken

After a long break in which it moved into first place, Illinois saw its offense lay an egg in a losing effort at Penn State. It was clear that, despite the rousing win over Ohio State, this is still the same Illinois team we’ve watched all season. Let’s again roll out what we’ll have to start calling the Illini table:

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Big Ten Geeks: Beilein Ball

Michigan and Michigan State played a highly entertaining game that lived up to advance billing, with the Wolverines prevailing by the slimmest of margins. This result flew in the face of the conventional wisdom that Michigan can’t win when its threes aren’t falling, as John Beilein’s team scored quite well despite shooting 29 percent from deep. As it usually does with a Beilein offense, the answer lied in a high conversion rate on twos and a low turnover rate.

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Big Ten Geeks: At the turn

It’s certainly been an interesting start to the Big Ten season. Wisconsin looks vulnerable, Indiana looks much improved, and Minnesota is still fighting after losing its star. But what do that numbers say at the one-third mark?

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Big Ten Geeks: A Bad Night for the Hoosier State

How do you break a Big Ten losing streak? Last night, the unlikely answer was to take a trip to snowy Indiana. Wisconsin and Minnesota got their seasons back on track with impressive wins in the Hoosier state.

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Big Ten Geeks: The Brandon Paul Game

With an amazing 43-point performance from Brandon Paul, Illinois shocked Ohio State in Champaign. Coming in, this looked like a game that the Illini might hope to keep close with their defense, but it seemed unlikely that Bruce Weber’s struggling offense would be able to scrape together enough points against the nation’s top defense. That analysis went out the window once Paul got rolling.

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Big Ten Geeks: Homework

It’s early in the conference season, but not so early that teams don’t have something they need to work on. To get them in shape, let’s hand out some homework assignments.

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Big Ten Geeks: By The Slimmest of Margins!

Illinois picked up a much needed victory at Northwestern, but they sure didn’t make it easy on themselves. The Wildcats came out executing their offense to the tune of 1.13 points per possession in the first half, a very solid showing against a good Illini defense. John Shurna was at the forefront of the attack, putting up 17 first half points. Northwestern built a double digit lead before a late Illinois run made it closer at the half.

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Big Ten Geeks: First Team to 50 Is a Big Ten Title Contender

Wisconsin and Michigan State squared off last night in a game that will not help the Big Ten’s national image. Via a combination of slow pace, good defense, and missed shots that both teams would normally make, the Spartans and Badgers labored for points. It took Michigan State over 13 minutes of game time to break into double digits–and even then they were only down two points. Wisconsin’s shooting nightmare that began against Iowa persisted, and it truly looked like the first team to 50 would win.

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Big Ten Geeks: New Ballgame

Every year, it’s a test of one’s will to avoid drawing any conclusions prior to the beginning of conference play. For instance, two years ago the Texas Longhorns jumped out to an undefeated mark before beginning their conference slate. Non-conference opponents included Pitt, UNC, and Michigan State. After opening conference play with wins over what turned out to be the bottom of the Big XII, Texas sat atop both polls (I still don’t understand the point of polls in college basketball) and was generally recognized as the best team in the country.

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Big Ten Geeks: IU, MSU Trade Blows Like True Heavyweights

The conference season is officially underway, as every B1G team has played a game (isn’t that 12-team balance nice?). Let’s take a look at the opening performances from Wednesday and Thursday.

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Big Ten Geeks: Barnburner in Illinois, Calamity in Nebraska

And they’re off! Conference play began last night, and we’ve already been treated to a close game and a Wisconsin blowout–two things we’ll probably see plenty of over the next two-and-a-half months. Let’s get to the details.

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Big Ten Geeks: Wrapping It Up

Wednesday’s and Thursday’s games marked the end of non-conference play for many Big Ten members. With the holiday break looming, let’s run down who has been naughty and nice.

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