Bracketology: Don't forget about surging Wisconsin Badgers

Feb 4, 2016; Madison, WI, USA; Wisconsin Badgers fans display their affection for Wisconsin Badgers forward Nigel Hayes during the game with the Ohio State Buckeyes at the Kohl Center. Wisconsin defeated Ohio State 79-68. Mandatory Credit: Mary Langenfeld-USA TODAY Sports

Nigel Hayes, literally, drops the mic

Mary Langenfeld-USA TODAY Sports

It’s time to take the temperature of the Big Ten’s NCAA hopes with a weekly check of the mock brackets from Jerry Palm of CBSSports.com and Joe Lunardi of ESPN. The Big Ten continues to look like a six-bid league. But Wisconsin—winners of five in a row–is making some noise in Lunardi’s analysis.

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Big Ten links: Caleb Swanigan effect, NU postseason & more

Sandra Dukes-USA TODAY Sports

Big game tonight at Purdue with Michigan State in town. Graham Couch has an interesting take. If you recall, Boiler star big man Caleb Swanigan originally committed to Michigan State … but flipped to Purdue. Had he landed in East Lansing, it may have disrupted the development of Matt Costello and Deyonta Davis. You see … everything happens for a reason.

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Power Rankings: Iowa stays on top; Michigan State, Purdue climb

Feb 3, 2016; Iowa City, IA, USA; Iowa Hawkeyes forward Jarrod Uthoff (20) shoots the ball during the second half against the Penn State Nittany Lions at Carver-Hawkeye Arena. Iowa won 73-49.

Iowa drops Illinois, stays on top

Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

We are now past the halfway point in conference play, and we have certainly learned a lot. There is still plenty of basketball to be played, but it’s time to start to identify the teams that are maintaining a high level of play and/or trending upward at the moment.

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