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WATCH: Highlights from Wednesday's men's basketball action

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Big Ten Geeks: Michigan State runs by Northwestern

As expected, Michigan State had little trouble bumping Northwestern from the Big Ten tournament in Friday’s final quarterfinal. The Wildcats did manage to hang around for a bit early – the game was tied after eight minutes of action – but the remainder of the first half was all Spartans. Michigan State raced out to an 18-point halftime lead, and the outcome was never in doubt. Gary Harris played a very nice all-around game, as he finished with 13 points, seven rebounds, three assists, three blocks, two steals, and no turnovers. Oh, and he did this too: VIDEO: You'll want to

Dienhart: Dawson, Spartans look ready for March

Healthy again, Michigan State toppled Northwestern, 67-51, on Friday night in the Big Ten tourney quarterfinals. The win marked the third-seeded Spartans’ third win over the Wildcats this season. Get Tom Dienhart’s instant reaction to the game in this post. [ MORE: AP RECAP | BOX | PBP | ALL SCORES | CONNECT | LIVE PRESSERS ] Key moment: With less than two minutes left in the first half, Travis Trice made a nice pass to Matt Costello, who finished with authority to give Michigan State a 35-20 edge. Then, after a Northwestern turnover, Denzel Valentine made a behind-the-back dish

Michigan State topples Northwestern, 67-51

(AP) Branden Dawson had 16 points and Gary Harris added 13 points to lead No. 22 Michigan State to a 67-51 victory over Northwestern in the Big Ten Tournament quarterfinals Friday night. The third-seeded Spartans (24-7), who lost 3 of 4 games heading into the contest, will face No. 12 Wisconsin in one semifinal on Saturday. Drew Crawford scored 21 points and Alex Olah finished with 10 for the 11th-seeded Wildcats (14-19), who lost to the Spartans in the league tournament for the fourth time. Michigan State went on a 13-3 spurt in the first half and then extended the

Photo: Every B1G team has its own hot dog at tourney

You never know what you’re going to come across at the Big Ten Tournament. We have seen upset victories, buzzer-beater shots, and Big Ten style hot dogs… Yes, that’s right. On the main concourse at Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Big Ten fans can purchase footlong hot dogs, made a certain way for all 12 Big Ten schools. Check it out: My personal favorite: The Wisconsin hot dog. Cheddar cheese sauce, pepper jack, provolone, Cheetos and pepper relish. How good does that sound?

Big Ten Geeks: An Easy Bubble Solver Update

We sit a mere two days from Selection Sunday, yet much is still to be determined in Indianapolis. Thursday’s quarterfinals saw Minnesota and Illinois keep hope alive. How much more do these teams, along with Nebraska, need to do to get into the Big Dance? As you could probably tell over the last couple weeks, we’re fans of the Easy Bubble Solver. It’s a quick, easy, and objective way to get a feel for who’s truly on the bubble and who isn’t. You simply add together each team’s KenPom rank and RPI rank, then sort them from smallest to largest.

Dienhart: Four quick thoughts for Day 2

Thursday’s action will be difficult to top, as every game had drama. Friday will try to live up to that billing with four interesting tilts. Here is one though on each game. [ MORE: Day 1 stars | Day 2 previews | Get all of our Big Ten tourney coverage ] 1. No. 1 Michigan just may have a shot at a top seed in the NCAA tourney with Villanova losing early in the Big East tourney. It would be hard to ignore the Wolverines being regular-season and tourney champs in a very strong Big Ten. But Michigan must be

Dienhart: Setting the stage for today's action

Well, that was a fun opening day of the Big Ten tourney, wasn’t it? Officially, there was a pair of upsets, although No. 9 Illinois’ win over No. 8 Indiana isn’t all that much of a stunner. Anyway, all eyes move to Friday’s quarterfinals. Get my Day 2 primers in this post. [ MORE: Check out all of our Big Ten tourney coverage ] No. 1 Michigan vs. No. 9 Illinois The skinny on Michigan: The Wolverines have clearly established themselves as the hunted, winning the league crown by forging a 15-3 conference mark, which is three games better than

B1G Tourney: BTN.com's all-Thursday team

If you’re a fan of college basketball, then you have to appreciate how entertaining Day One of the Big Ten men’s basketball tournament was. Four games were decided by a total of 24 points, with No. 11 Northwestern closing out Thursday’s session with a memorable 67-62 upset victory over No. 6 Iowa. With four games in the book, there were plenty of outstanding individual performances as well. BTN.com senior writer Tom Dienhart and BTN.com web editor Sean Merriman provide their all-Thursday team from Day One of the Big Ten Tournament. [ MORE: Get all of our Big Ten tournament coverage

B1G Tourney: Best sights & sounds from Day 1

Day One of the Big Ten Tournament is officially in the books. Just as the regular season was, the opening round of the tournament was anything but predictable. No. 11 Northwestern upset No. 6 Iowa, Ohio State and Minnesota recorded narrow wins over Purdue and Penn State,  respectively, and Illinois topped Indiana, who many believed could make a run in this tournament. With that said, let’s take a look back at the best sights and sounds from Day One of the Big Ten Tournament. [ MORE: Read all of our Big Ten tournament coverage ] Best win: No. 11 Northwestern

Big Ten Geeks: Northwestern shocks Iowa

Iowa’s tailspin to close the regular season has carried into the postseason in the form of a stunning loss to Northwestern, 67-62. As an adjective, “stunning” is overused as pertains to college basketball, but this result is deserving of the term. Not only did the Wildcats overcome some heavy odds to get the win (KenPom had the Hawkeyes as 86% favorites), Chris Collins’ team also did it in the most unlikely way. Northwestern scored a staggering 1.17 points per possession on red-hot shooting (57 percent on twos, 48 percent on threes). Let’s not forget – these Wildcats quite possibly have