The 2011 season was barely punctuated, and the 2012 football polls were already coming out. LSU looks like a consensus pick for No. 1, but the Big Ten is well represented. In the five polls I found, Michigan, Michigan State and Wisconsin all were ranked. And Nebraska appeared in all but one poll. Ohio State, which is ineligible to win the Big Ten title or play in a bowl in 2012 because of probation, is in two polls.
With an amazing 43-point performance from Brandon Paul, Illinois shocked Ohio State in Champaign. Coming in, this looked like a game that the Illini might hope to keep close with their defense, but it seemed unlikely that Bruce Weber’s struggling offense would be able to scrape together enough points against the nation’s top defense. That analysis went out the window once Paul got rolling.
On a night when legendary Illinois coach Lou Henson was honored with a banner that was raised to the rafters of Assembly Hall, Illini guard Brandon Paul raised the roof on the place. Paul notched a career-high 43-point effort in propelling Illinois to a 79-74 victory over Ohio State in what could be a season-defining game for the Illini.
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Brandon Paul’s career-high 43 points helped Illinois upset No. 5 Ohio State (recap) and No. 7 Michigan State stayed perfect in Big Ten play by throttling Iowa (recap) in Big Ten men’s action Tuesday. Catch up on all the action on our Big Ten scoreboard and get stats, recaps and video in this post. Also, watch our Paul-centric highlight from Illinois’ upset win over No. 5 Ohio State now.
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With every Big Ten basketball team having played anywhere between 15-17 games, we’ve reached the unofficial midway point of the 2011-12 season. Pretty soon it will be March, and that means the Big Ten tourney and NCAA tourney aren’t that far off. OK, they’re still two months away, but the first couple of months sure didn’t take long. Find Brent Yarina’s midway Big Ten honors in this post.
On tonight’s Big Ten Football Report, we aired an all-access feature where newly hired Urban Meyer gave us a tour of his office at Ohio State. BTN analyst Gerry DiNardo interviewed Meyer during the behind-the-scenes piece. Also, you can catch DiNardo’s interview with Meyer on next week’s Football Report.
Another week, another look at the top players in the Big Ten. Ohio State big man Jared Sullinger has dominated all year. The question: Will anyone dethrone him this season from his perch atop these rankings?
Find out more about: Hoops Player Rankings