Latest Tom Dienhart News

Today's links: Another big tourney day

We had to wait until close to midnight for our first big upset of the NCAA tourney, with No. 14 Harvard shocking No. 3 New Mexico. What will Day Two bring? Hopefully not an upset for No. 1 Indiana, which takes its first step toward a national championship today vs. James Madison. And, it’s Final Four or bust for a Hoosiers team that has some pressure on it. But, it’s embracing it.

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Quick hit: Burke struggles but Michigan wins

The matchup between Trey Burke and South Dakota State guard Nate Wolters was much hyped but it  didn’t pan out, as both players struggled. Burke missed his first eight shots and didn’t sink his first bucket until the 12:46 mark of the second half. The sophomore hit just 2-of-12 shots and finished with a season-low six points, failing to reach double-figures for the first time this season. Still, No. 4 seed Michigan handled No. 13 seed South Dakota State, 71-56.

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Reader mail: My NCAA tournament edition

It’s time to reach into my mailbag and answer your pressing questions. Lots of good questions this week, as usual. Yes, spring football is heating up. But with March Madness here, hoops are on your mind. So, let’s start there.

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Quick hit: Spartans roll over Valpo

The Spartans were too big, too athletic, too strong and just plain too good for the Crusaders in this second-round game. In fact, the final score is deceiving. This game wasn’t that close. Michigan State played one of its most complete games of the season, being especially dominating on the glass as it aims for a seventh Final Four appearance under Tom Izzo. 

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Today's links: Tourney time for all

Welcome to one of the greatest days on the sports calendar! Where to begin? How about here, with Ohio State, one of my Final Four picks? When you think of Ohio State’s sprint to the NCAA tourney, ripping off eight victories in a row, you think of an offense that has featured a steadier stream of contributors around Deshaun Thomas. But defense has been the catalyst. And one of the biggest defensive sparks has been provided by Shannon Scott.

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Dienhart: 64 reasons why the NCAA tourney is great

As if you needed any more reasons to celebrate the full-fledged start of the greatest spectacle in sports, here are 64 more—in no particular order—on why the NCAA Tournament is without peer. Why not 68? Because I don’t like the play-in games.

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Wisconsin adds power Alabama to 2015 slate

Strength of schedule figures to be a big component of the criteria used to determine who will play in the coming four-team playoff in 2014. To that end, Wisconsin’s 2015 slate will get a big boost from having a game with Alabama on its slate.

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Dienhart: 3 keys for each Big Ten NCAA team

On the eve of the NCAA tournament, hope spring eternal for every team. Get hot, rip off six victories in a row, and you will be national champion.

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NCAA Preview: Indiana ready to roll as No. 1

Tom Crean and the Hoosiers didn’t get the No. 1 spot in the Midwest—and the chance to play the second weekend of the tourney in Indianapolis that came along with it–but they are No. 1 in the East and open in nearby Dayton, Ohio. All in all, it’s not a terrible draw, especially when one looks at the loaded field in the Midwest. However, Indiana is only 3-3 in its last six games.

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NCAA Preview: Can Illini get hot at right time?

Illinois is a tough team to read. On any given night, John Groce’s club is capable of beating any team, evidenced by signature wins over Butler, Gonzaga, Indiana and Ohio State. Then, on other nights, they look like they can lose to just about any team. Which Illinois team will show up when the tourney tips off? That’s the question.

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Today's links: Tubby's future, Marble's return & CBI

It has become an annual spring rite: President Obama filling out a NCAA bracket. And he has two Big Ten teams in his Final Four: Ohio State and Indiana. There is no better place to start daily links on the eve of the NCAA tournament.

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Dienhart: Big Ten should put Purdue in 'West'

It looks like we are getting closer to divisional realignment in the Big Ten in anticipation of Maryland and Rutgers joining in 2014, according to an ESPN.com report. The big remaining question: Will Indiana or Purdue have to play in the West Division?

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NCAA Preview: OSU eyes consecutive Final Fours

The Buckeyes are one of the hottest teams in the nation, winning eight in a row en route to capturing the Big Ten tourney title.

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Big Ten and NCAA upsets--8 big ones here

What’s the best part of the NCAA tournament? It’s the upsets. They are what we remember from year to year.

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NCAA Preview: Which Minnesota team will show up?

Many are picking the No. 11 seed Gophers to knock off No. 6 UCLA in the first round of their South Region clash. Yes, Minnesota is in a funk, losing three in a row and seven of 10. But this still is a talented, athletic and physical team that’s capable of big things with players like Andre HollinsAustin Hollins, Rodney Williams and Trevor Mbakwe, among others.

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