Just a couple weeks ago, Minnesota was 15-1 and in the top 10 of the national polls. Fast forward to today, and the Gophers have lost four straight – a funk that keeps them dropping in my Power Rankings. Where does your team land on my latest list? Find out in this post. Oh, and feel free to send me your thoughts, either in the comment box at the bottom of the post or on Twitter (@BTNBrentYarina). [ RELATED: Where is your Big Ten team ranked in latest national polls? ] 1. Michigan, (19-1, 6-1) – The nation’s new No.
This is a nice week that is anchored by a Titanic prime-time clash on Saturday: No. 1 Michigan at No. 3 Indiana, which began the season No. 1. This should be a battle of first-place teams, with the winner in the driver’s seat to win the Big Ten. There are some other tantalizing matchups, including Wisconsin at No. 11 Ohio State, Indiana at Purdue, Iowa at No. 23 Minnesota, Illinois at No. 13 Michigan State and Wisconsin at Illinois. There is nothing better than a Purdue-Indiana hoop game in late January to heat up your house. You just know the
Indiana held serve against Michigan State to move into a tie with Michigan atop the Big Ten standings. Normally, I’d use this opportunity to point out that although Indiana won by 5, the outcome actually suggests that Michigan State is the better team. But I don’t think that’s true here, because Indiana was equal to or better than the Spartans in all but one category—three-point shooting. MSU made 11 of its 23 attempts from behind the three-point line, and I’ll go ahead and call that an aberration. While IU’s perimeter defense isn’t exactly a strength (teams are more than willing
It’s Coaches vs. Cancer weekend, and that means coaching staffs around the nation are wearing gym shoes on the sidelines to help raise awareness for the deadly disease. And, in some cases, coaches opt for a more comfortable look, like Tom Crean. Check out photos of all the Big Ten coaches’ footwear from this weekend in this post. Illinois’ John Groce went with blue and orange Nikes, while staff went white and orange As mentioned above, Crean went with the tracksuit again: Iowa’s staff went with white and black Nikes Michigan’s staff went with white and blue low-top adidas shoes
Traevon Jackson just beat the shot clock and hit a 15-foot jumper from the right side with 4 seconds left as Wisconsin got past No. 14 Minnesota 45-44 on Saturday, the Golden Gophers’ fourth straight loss. After Jackson’s shot gave the Badgers a 45-43 lead, the Golden Gophers (15-5, 3-4 Big Ten) called a timeout with 1.8 seconds remaining and inbounded from halfcourt. The Badgers’ Mike Bruesewitz fouled Trevor Mbakwe on the play, but the big man was unable to shoot the ensuing free throws because of an apparent right hand or wrist injury. Rodney Williams stepped to the line
I’ll admit—I’ve never truly forgiven Minnesota for 2010. Back in those days, when the internet was over, it was my opinion that the Gophers should have been contending for a Big Ten championship. I wasn’t even close, as Minnesota finished the season at 9-9, and squeaked into the NCAA Tournament (the Gophers barely had enough time to check into their hotel before Xavier dispatched of them in the first round). I’ve since taken an oath of sorts, which is that I can’t believe in Minnesota until the team sorts out the defense. The Gophers have never been all that good
Since his 360 slam in mid-December, Rodney Williams has been uncharacteristically quiet on the jaw-dropping dunk front. He’s had his share of slams (watch in our Dunk Archive), but nothing to the level we’re accustom to. That changed Wednesday at Northwestern, when Williams was on the receiving end of a nice alley-oop. To be honest, the pass, from Joe Coleman, might have been as pretty as the dunk. Watch it now. [ RELATED: Want to embed BTN.com video? Here’s how! ] Ladies and gentlemen, THAT is your slam of the night. Thank you, Rodney Williams. Thank you. #Gophers #withauthority — Tom
Jared Swopshire scored 16 points to lead Northwestern to a 55-48 victory over No. 14 Minnesota on Wednesday night. In a game where baskets were hard to come by at times, the Wildcats (12-8, 3-4 Big Ten) made just enough shots down the stretch to beat a ranked opponent for the second time in three games while sending the Gophers (15-4, 3-3) to their third straight loss. Alex Marcotullio made a 3-pointer midway through the second half to give Northwestern a one-point lead and start the decisive 13-2 run. Reggie Hearn scored 13 points after averaging 21 in the previous
Michigan State won a battle of attrition in frigid Madison, edging Wisconsin by a 49-47 score. The Spartans are now 5-0 in games decided by three points or less, and this win was especially fortunate. The Badgers did an excellent job on defense, forcing Michigan State to take an abnormally high proportion of two-point jumpers: MICHIGAN STATE FGM FGA FG% % of shots Layups/dunks/tip-ins 6 13 46% 28% Two-point jumpers 8 25 32% 53% Threes 4 9 44% 19% For the season, the Spartans dedicate only 33 percent of their shots to two-point jumpers, as they are usually able to get
In our latest Super Wednesday doubleheader, presented by Buffalo Wild Wings, Northwestern upset No. 14 Minnesota and No. 8 Indiana blew out Penn State. As always, we live blogged throughout the action – look back at our previous conversations here. Join BTN.com’s Tom Dienhart and Brent Yarina and the Big Ten Geeks here every week. And use BTN Connect to track the chatter surrounding your men’s basketball team.