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Mbakwe, Minnesota upset No. 1 Indiana, 77-73

Trevor Mbakwe had 21 points and 12 rebounds to help Minnesota take down No. 1 Indiana 77-73 on Tuesday night, the seventh time the top-ranked team in The Associated Press’ poll has lost a game this season. Andre Hollins added 16 points for the Gophers (19-9, 7-8 Big Ten), who outrebounded Cody Zeller and the Hoosiers by a whopping 44-30 and solidified their slipping NCAA tournament case with an emphatic performance against the Big Ten leaders. [ VIDEO: Watch Rodney Williams’ incredible rejection ] Zeller was held to nine points with four turnovers for the Hoosiers (24-4, 12-3), who have

Power Rankings: Spartans fall in wake of 0-2 week

How tough is the Big Ten this season? A week ago, several people thought Michigan State might be the Big Ten’s top team. Today, following back-to-back losses, the Spartans land at No. 4 on 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). [ RELATED: Where is your Big Ten team ranked in latest national polls? ] 1. Indiana, (24-3, 12-2) – In two critical games vs. Big Ten contender Michigan State this season,

Weekly Q&A: Listen to your Big Ten coach

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. Listen to Coach Crean:  Listen to Coach McCaffery:  Listen to Coach Groce:  Listen to Coach Carmody: Listen to Penn State Assistant Coach Eugene Burroughs: Listen to Coach Painter:  Listen to Coach Izzo: Listen to Coach Ryan: Listen to

Team up: Ranking football & hoops coaching combos

Fun item from esteemed ex-colleague David Fox of Athlon Sports on the top football/basketball coaching tandems in the nation. Topping the list: Ohio State’s duo of Thad Matta and Urban Meyer. Michigan’s duo of Brady Hoke and John Beilein is No. 2 in the nation, according to Athlon. Here is how Athlon ranks the Big Ten tandems. Hard to argue with Fox putting Matta and Meyer on top. Matta has taken Ohio State to two Final Fours, three Big Ten tourney titles and a share of five regular-season crowns. Meyer won two national titles at Florida and debuted with a

Big Ten Geeks: The best B1G defense in a decade?

Wisconsin held Northwestern to a paltry 0.74 points per possession in one of the most methodical blowouts you’ll ever see. The Wildcats were just consistently outclassed, as the Badgers steadily built their lead until it had swelled to the final 28-point margin. Northwestern’s lowly output helped Wisconsin nudge its in-conference defensive efficiency down to 0.901 points per trip. If the Badgers can keep that number at that level, it would be the Big Ten’s lowest ever in the tempo-free era (since 2002-03). The conference has seen some fantastic defensive squads over those ten-plus seasons, but none of them were able

'Journey' features IU's Creek, big dunkers, & Magic

This week on “The Journey 2013” presented by Chase Freedom our crew spotlights Indiana’s Maurice Creek and trace his path back from multiple major injuries into the Hoosier rotation. We also look at Ohio State’s Sam Thompson and Minnesota’s Rodney Williams, two of the best dunkers in the Big Ten. We’ll also highlight the connection Michigan State great Earvin “Magic” Johnson has to his alma mater as the Big Ten legend returned to East Lansing for the Indiana-Michigan State game. The next episode of “The Journey 2013” airs at 8 p.m. ET on Sunday following the Northwestern-Purdue game on BTN/BTN2Go. BTN.com

No. 18 Ohio State blows out Minnesota, 71-45

Deshaun Thomas overcame a slow start to score 19 points and No. 18 Ohio State used a 16-0 second-half run to beat Minnesota 71-45 on Wednesday night. Shannon Scott added 11 points and LaQuinton Ross 10 for the Buckeyes, who have won the last six meetings with the Golden Gophers overall and the last six in Columbus. The teams came into the night in dire need of a Big Ten win. Both had lost three of their last four, and each was humiliated on the road on Sunday. The Golden Gophers (18-9, 6-8 Big Ten) were pounded at Iowa, 72-51,

Big Ten Geeks: Say Hello to your champs

Indiana pulled out a huge road win over Michigan State, thanks largely to the all-around heroics of Victor Oladipo. The surging national player of the year contender made things happen all over the court. On the offensive end, Oladipo was about as efficient as it gets, attacking the tin (he went six for seven on dunks and layups, ridiculous numbers for a guard) while turning it over only once. [ RELATED: Big Ten Player of the Year: Burke or Oladipo? ] Scoring 19 points on 11 shots is impressive enough, but Oladipo’s defensive effort was even better. He finished with

Weekly Q & A: Listen to your Big Ten coach

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. Listen to Coach Crean:  Listen to Coach McCaffery:  Listen to Coach Groce: Listen to Coach Carmody: Listen to coach Chambers: Listen to Coach Painter: Listen to Coach Izzo: Listen to Coach Ryan: Listen to Coach Beilein: Listen to

Power Rankings: Surging Illini continue ascent

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). [ RELATED: Where is your Big Ten team ranked in latest national polls? ] 1. Indiana, (23-3, 11-2) – About Will Sheehey‘s perfect 9-of-9 effort from the field in Saturday’s 83-55 rout of Purdue,