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Weekly Q & A: Listen to your Big Ten coach

Matthew O'Haren-USA TODAY Sports

The Big Ten men’s basketball coaches held their weekly Big Ten teleconference Monday with reporters from around the league, and we’ve posted the audio from each phone interview in the post below. BTN.com will post these media sessions each Monday right up to the Big Ten Men’s Basketball Tournament, and all of our audio can be found in our BTN.com audio archive.

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Power Rankings: Surging Illini continue ascent

John Groce

Evans Dunks It Back In With Gusto

Bradley Leeb-USA TODAY Sports

John Groce’s Illini continued their torrid play this week, dispatching Purdue and Northwestern, teams they lost to earlier this season. Winners of four straight, Illinois has moved to No. 5 in my latest Power Rankings. Where does your team land? Find out in this post. Oh, and feel free to send me your thoughts, either in the comment box in this post or on Twitter (@BTNBrentYarina).

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Big Ten Geeks: Boiling Over

Bradley Leeb-USA TODAY Sports

Illinois exorcised some demons in a 20 point blowout of Purdue. The Fighting Illini seniors had never beaten the Boilermakers, but they changed that in emphatic fashion by attacking the offensive glass and limiting turnovers. In all, Illinois attempted 13 more field goals than Purdue, and those extra looks enabled John Groce’s team to score 1.20 points per trip despite 29 percent shooting on jumpers. It was Illinois’ best output since the win at Gonzaga, and it appears that the Illini of the season’s first month have returned.

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Video: Tubby Smith dances after victory

After Minnesota downed No. 20 Wisconsin in overtime on Thursday night (and yes, there were many dunks), Minnesota coach Tubby Smith addressed his team in the locker room and then performed a most wonderful victory dance after announcing, “Today is a wonderful day, fellas. Valentine’s Day!” Watch the short but memorable clip here in this post.

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