“Working” officials is an art form. Some coaches are masters at knowing just the right buttons to push over the course of a game to the point where—Who knows?—maybe they can get a key call in their favor. I asked several media members who cover the Big Ten which coach they felt was best at “working” officials.
The Big Ten officially released a breakdown of the 2014-15 men’s basketball matchups. This will be the first Big Ten hoops season for new members, Maryland and Rutgers. The 14 conference teams will play 18-game league games, playing five teams both home and away and eight teams once. Each team will play four of its single-play opponents at home and four on the road.
An interesting week in the Big Ten, as Michigan surged to the top of the conference as it looks for its outright conference championship since the 1985-86 season.
Penn State celebrated an early senior night (the Nittany Lions still have another home game remaining, but I guess they didn’t like their chances against Wisconsin) by rallying from an 11-point first half deficit to take down Ohio State. PSU got a big game out of junior guard D.J. Newbill (23 points, 9 shots), who had a better game than LaQuinton Ross (19 points, 12 shots). I mention those two because, outside of them, there was not a lot of offense. Tim Frazier had 16 points, but it took 12 shots to get there and it came with 6 turnovers.
This week on “The Journey: Big Ten Basketball 2014” we see how Michigan freshman point guard Derrick Walton has tackled the task of filling Trey Burke’s shoes. Plus, there is special bond between Iowa’s Fran McCaffery and his brother. We also take a look at how Indiana basketball plays a big role in the life of international recording star and Hoosier state native John Mellencamp. The show debuts at 8 p.m. ET this Saturday after the Minnesota-Michigan game.
Thursday night’s No. 20 Iowa at Indiana game was originally scheduled to be played last Tuesday, but the game was rescheduled due to a piece of metal that fell from the ceiling of Assembly Hall. The falling metal damaged several seats in the northwest corner of the arena. In the first men’s game since the roof issue, several Indiana fans showed up to the exciting 93-86 upset win wearing Hoosier-themed hard hats.