Latest Tom Dienhart News

Big Ten Mailbag: Keys to Indiana at Michigan State

It’s that time of the week when I reach into my mail bag to take your questions. Hoops dominate the talk as we head toward the home stretch of the season. Scheduling also is a hot topic. Let’s go!

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Big Ten primer: Is it Tuesday night yet?

All eyes will be on Michigan State (22-4 overall; 11-2 Big Ten) this week. If the Spartans can beat Indiana (23-3; 11-2) and Ohio State (18-7; 8-5), they will be in control of the Big Ten race as we head toward the home stretch.

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Monday's web links: Oladipo & Hawkeyes, Illini's NCAA hopes

After a less-than-scintillating Sunday of hoops—Who knew Penn State-Michigan would be the best game?–let’s hope Tuesday’s huge Indiana and Michigan State game lives up to the hype. So, I’m gonna jump ahead and start daily links there.

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Michigan State OC Roushar accepts Saints position

Michigan State offensive coordinator Dan Roushar is leaving to be the running backs coach of the New Orleans Saints, the school announced in a release Saturday.

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Today's links: Experts assess Big Ten teams

Wow. I can’t find a juicier way to open daily links than with a string of recent quotes from Michigan State’s Derrick Nick. Here’s just one gem:  “I just feel like Michigan State is always the underdog and we don’t get the credit we deserve.” What? There’s plenty more like that right here. The Michigan State beat writers thank you, Derrick.

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Survey says: Which coach works officials the best?

Next time you watch a game, keep an eye on the sidelines. Watch the coaches jaw with the referees, calling them over and talking to them about a call or non-call. In the coaching biz, it’s called “working the officials,” and the Big Ten has some coaches who are masters at it.

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All-Big Ten team built using 2-star recruits

Don’t fret if your school didn’t sign any five-star recruits during the recent National Signing Day for football. And don’t worry if your favorite team came up short on inking four-star players, either. History has shown that many good players arrive on campus as two- recruits. Really. It’s true.

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Dienhart: Look out for these lurking Badgers

We may be witnessing Bo Ryan’s best coaching job in 12 seasons at Wisconsin. And that’s saying a lot.

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Today's links: Spin through Big Ten's headlines

Seeing as how this is Valentine’s Day, I’ll start with this heart-warming tale of the enduring marriage of Minnesota coach Jerry Kill and his wife Rebecca. OK. My Valentine’s Day obligations have been met. On to the daily links, including a look at an uphill fight for Ohio State, an update on the slipping Gophers, an uptick for the Illini, and more.

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NCAA Brackets: What are the experts saying?

It’s time to look at the various mock brackets to see how the Big Ten is being forecast for the Big Dance. All four mock brackets that I check each week are in accord by having seven Big Ten teams in the NCAA tourney. The only other conference with as many is the Big East.

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Big Ten links: Experts weigh in on Big Ten race

Humbled. Embarrassed. Can you think of any other words to describe No. 4 Michigan after it was shellacked at No. 8 Michigan State 75-52 last night? Credit the mighty Spartans, who looked like a No. 1 team in the nation last night. Graham Couch of the Lansing State Journal notes: The Spartans put it all together at the perfect time. Yes, that sounds about right.

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Dienhart: Dropping FCS foes makes total sense

Talking on his radio show last night, Wisconsin A.D. Barry Alvarez said that Big Ten A.D.s have agreed to stop scheduling FCS schools in the future. Alvarez gave no indication on when Big Ten schools would stop playing FCS foes. But, it can’t happen soon enough in what often are little more than glorified scrimmages.

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Dienhart: Get ready for 9- or 10-game league schedule

Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany issued a statement to the Big Ten Network on Tuesday saying the league will look into a nine- and 10-game league schedule in the future.

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Dienhart: Rule changes? Coaches say slow down

Indiana coach Kevin Wilson gets it. He understands the need for the NCAA to continue attempts to streamline its New York City-phone-book-thick rule book. In many instances, that’s OK as many feel there are too many rules that are too confusing and too difficult to track and enforce.

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Let's get to ranking this week's games

This week is headlined by two great games, with Michigan playing at Michigan State tonight  Ohio State travelling to Wisconsin on Sunday. Those are the two really big blockbusters, but here’s how I see some other games falling into place after that – and we go No. 1 through No. 12.

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