The arrival of the Super Bowl means many things to many people. Ro-tel and Velveeta dip … the end of the most wonderful time of the year … spring is approaching. For me, it means we basically are at the halfway point of the Big Ten hoop season.
Michigan State pulled out an impressive overtime win at Iowa despite the continued absence of Adreian Payne and Branden Dawson. The gritty win was all about defense for the Spartans, as they held one of the nation’s top offenses to 1.01 points per trip at home.
If you ever wondered if a player could pick up his dribble from outside the 3-point arc and get to the hoop for a layup without being called for traveling, he can. Keith Appling did it in Tuesday night’s overtime win at Iowa, and the no-call didn’t sit well with Iowa fans or Fran McCaffery; in fact, McCaffery was hit with a technical foul. ESPN commentator Jay Bilas said this about the play: “It’s hard to believe, but I think that would have been a walk in the NBA.”
(AP) Keith Appling scored 16 points and No. 6 Michigan State outlasted No. 12 Iowa 71-69 in overtime Tuesday night, handing the Hawkeyes their first home loss of the season. Matt Costello had 11 points and 12 rebounds for the Spartans (19-2, 8-1 Big Ten), who avoided consecutive defeats despite missing injured starters Adreian Payne and Branden Dawson.
President Obama will deliver the annual State of the Union Address tonight. That being the case, I thought I’d do something super-cheesy and address the state of each Big Ten men’s basketball team. See my take on all 12 teams in this post.
The best Big Ten game this week is the first one, tonight in Iowa City when Michigan State visits Iowa. Each team is looking for a win to keep pace with Big Ten leader Michigan. The Wolverines beat each team last week, adding to the sense of urgency for both clubs. Here is my ranking of this week’s action.