Cruising through my Big Ten Mailbag on a quiet February afternoon. What do I find? Questions about Purdue’s prospects, Iowa’s offensive line, an Indiana football recruit and Denzel Valentine’s award hopes, among other things. Enjoy! [ MORE: Power Rankings | Player Rankings | Game Rankings | Bracketology | Ready for the week ahead? | Best of week that was | Early look at B1G tourney bracket | Standings | Stats | Scoreboard | Polls ] Why little love for Purdue? If the Boilers get the right matchups in the NCAA tournament, and A.J. Hammons turns it on for a couple
Who said linemen can't dunk? 🤔😂 300LB CLUB lol A post shared by HADDY (@jihadward) on Feb 21, 2016 at 2:37pm PST Former Illinois defensive lineman Jihad Ward is looking to make a name for himself before the 2016 NFL Draft. Consider it done. Ward, who tips the scales at 296 pounds, posted a video to Instagram of himself throwing down a reverse dunk. Ward stands 6-foot-5, but it’s impressive to see a guy as big as he is do something like this. In two seasons in Champaign, Ward collected 12 tackles for loss and 4.5 sacks.
Just two weeks remain in the Big Ten regular season, and I think everyone can all agree that the Big Ten Player of the Year will come down to Michigan State’s Denzel Valentine and Iowa’s Jarrod Uthoff. [ MORE: Power Rankings | Player Rankings | Game Rankings | Bracketology | Ready for the week ahead? | Best of week that was | Early look at B1G tourney bracket | Standings | Stats | Scoreboard | Polls ] As they did last week, the two stars top my latest Big Ten Player Rankings. And it’s Valentine sitting on top of the
Good to see Michigan State promoting Denzel Valentine for postseason honors by sending out a trinket. And, it’s a perfect embodiment of the versatile Valentine: a multi-purpose tool that includes a small knife, flashlight and bottle opener. It is green and includes Valentine’s name, number, and the Spartans’ logo. The guy was a stud last night in the win at OSU and has to be the fav to be national player of the year. *** Break up the Golden Gophers! That’s two wins in a row after downing Rutgers last night. *** As for the Scarlet Knights … well, they
Matt Van Dyk had one of those moments on Tuesday night that he will never forget. With Michigan State holding onto a commanding 79-62 lead over Ohio State late in Tuesday night’s game, Tom Izzo made a move to empty his bench. That’s when Van Dyk came into the game and threw down a dunk that electrified the Spartans’ bench. The MSU walk-on got a steal and dished the ball to teammate Alvin Ellis, who threw it off the backboard to Van Dyk for the two-handed flush. Check it out at the top of this post. Well done, Mr. Van
We had two Big Ten men's basketball games on Tuesday night, highlighted by one game on BTN.
Bishop Daniels threw down a dunk on Tuesday night that Rutgers basketball fans will remember for a long time. Leading 19-14 midway through the first half, Daniels drove to the rim and threw down a thunderous one-handed slam over a Minnesota defender. BTN’s Stephen Bardo had some great commentary following the dunk. “I didn’t know we were in Church tonight,” Bardo said. “But the Bishop showed up at the rim.” This has to be a finalist for Big Ten Dunk of the Year. Congrats, Mr. Daniels. You have earned the title of #BTNStandout.
Jae’Sean Tate, a sophomore forward for the Ohio State men’s basketball team, will have season-ending surgery on his left shoulder Friday, Thad Matta, head coach of the Buckeyes, announced Tuesday. The surgery will be performed at the Ohio State Wexner Medical Center. Tate had been recently battling the injury. He is expected to make a full recovery and be ready for the start of practice in the Fall of 2016. Tate, a native of nearby Pickerington, Ohio, played in 28 games this year, averaging 11.7 points and 6.4 rebounds. He started all 28 games for the 18-10 Buckeyes. The last
Big Ten play is a grind. Every coach and player, past and present, will attest to that. [ MORE: BTN2Go: Watch Wisconsin at No. 8 Iowa at 9 p.m. ET Wednesday ] No. 8 Iowa and Wisconsin are well aware of this fact entering Wednesday night’s highly anticipated rivalry game at Carver-Hawkeye Arena. Iowa entered the season quietly slipping under the radar but has since made its presence known, at one point landing in the top 5 of the national polls. The Hawkeyes have lost two of their last three, the lone win coming in a closer-than-expected victory over then-winless
I’ve been criticized recently for saying that Melo Trimble is the best point guard in the country. For once, I won’t try to defend myself. I may try to explain myself a bit, though, as I understand the questions surrounding Trimble and the Terps, who have yet to consistently play to their potential this season. [ MORE: See where Maryland lands in Jon Crispin’s latest Big Ten Power Rankings ] With Maryland, the expectations have been justifiably high. I personally had them in the preseason Final Four mix and still look at this team as a national championship contender. There