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Ranking games: Two Iowa tests top the list

We begin to head down the backstretch of the season, as my friends at Big Ten Geeks pointed out earlier this week. If you are like me, getting a clean read on the season makes you as confused as ever. But, don’t worry. Things will begin to crystallize … I think. Here’s my ranking of this week’s men’s basketball games. 1. Michigan at Iowa, Sat., Feb. 8. This is the game of week, ladies and gentlemen. The Wolverines sit atop the Big Ten along with Michigan State, as each has one loss. The Hawkeyes have three losses. A defeat will

Audio: Listen to your Big Ten coach's teleconference

On Monday, the 12 Big Ten men’s basketball coaches joined the Big Ten teleconference to take questions from the media. We’ve posted the audio for each coach on the call here, and will do so every Monday throughout the basketball season. Listen to coach Tom Crean: Listen to coach Fran McCaffery: Listen to coach John Groce: Listen to coach Chris Collins: Listen to coach Patrick Chambers: Listen to coach Matt Painter: Michigan State Associate Head Coach Dwayne Stephens:  Listen to coach Bo Ryan: Listen to coach John Beilein: Listen to coach Thad Matta: Listen to coach Richard Pitino: Listen to

Big Ten Geeks: Halfway Home

We’re now at the official halfway point of the conference season, so it seems an appropriate time to glance at player stats. We’ve already thrown around some Big Ten POY discussion, but we have enough data now that we can start to look a little deeper. Courtesy of statsheet.com, the following table contains the conference-only numbers for players that meet the following criteria: minute percentage above 60 percent, possession percentage above 22 percent, offensive rating above 100. These are the best of the best, the efficient possession-consumers, at least during the first half of Big Ten play. Player Poss% Ortg

Crawford, Newbill, Vonleh claim Big Ten weekly honors

The Big Ten office released its latest Big Ten Men’s Basketball Players of the Week on Monday, and three players were honored. Northwestern’s Drew Crawford and Penn State’s D.J. Newbill shared Player of the Week, while Indiana’s Noah Vonleh claimed Freshman of the Week. Read more in this post. Co-Players of the Week: Drew Crawford, Northwestern, G/F, Sr. Averaged 23.5 points, 6.5 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game in Northwestern’s road sweep over #14/13 Wisconsin and Minnesota For the week, shot 66.7 percent (16-of-24) from the field and 55.6 percent (5-of-9) from three-point range Against the Badgers, poured in a

B1G Hoops: IU sends Michigan to first Big Ten loss

Another day, another exciting day of Big Ten basketball. First, Penn State dropped Purdue, 79-68, to card its third straight Big Ten win. After that, Indiana handed No. 14 Michigan its first Big Ten loss in a 63-52 upset. Catch up on all the scores, stats and video highlights in this post. [ MORE: Enter our Trip to the Big Ten Tournament Sweepstakes! ] INDIANA 63, MICHIGAN 52 | RECAP | BOX | PLAY-BY-PLAY (AP) Yogi Ferrell scored 27 points, hitting seven 3-pointers in eight tries, to lead unranked Indiana to a 63-52 upset of No. 10 Michigan on Sunday.

Big Ten Mailbag: Is Michigan basketball for real?

It’s time for me to reach into my mail bag to answer your pressing questions. Basketball is on your mind. And that’s understandable, as we are in the heart of the season as I type this. So, let’s begin. [ MORE: Survey Says: Who is the Big Ten’s top newcomer ] Do you think that Michigan is for real? I really love watching the Wolverines play. – J.R. Rinehart Michigan is fun to watch, isn’t it? Making the success even more delicious is the fact no one expected this type of excellence from the Wolverines after they lost Trey Burke

Review & Preview: Every game is a Big Ten adventure

OK, are you as confused as I am? This week of upsets has turned the conference on its side and trashed most everything I thought I knew about the Big Ten. Penn State wins at Ohio State, Northwestern prevails at Wisconsin, and Nebraska dumps Indiana. And the Big Ten standings speak to that. But, hey, Michigan just keeps on winning. So, there’s a constant. Michigan State, too. Otherwise, hang on and buckle up for what could be wild February. Who will be the next upset victim? THREE STOCKS TO BUY 1. Michigan State. Just when it looked like injuries to

Big Ten Geeks: What Just Happened?

KenPom’s game probabilities gave Northwestern just a five percent chance of winning at Wisconsin, and it didn’t like Penn State’s chances of winning at Ohio State much better (nine percent). In one of the unlikeliest nights of Big Ten basketball you’ll ever see, both road underdogs pulled the upset, an outcome that had a combined probability of less than half a percent. How did this happen? Dogs and cats, living together! Mass hysteria! For Penn State, the key was furious finish in which it scored 16 points on the final eight possessions of regulation. The Buckeyes had held a 10-point

Video: D.J. Newbill hits OT game-winner at Ohio State

Prediction: D.J. Newbill won’t soon forgot his performance in Wednesday night’s win at No. 23 Ohio State. Not only did Newbill score a game-high 25 points, but he hit the game-winner with 1.9 seconds left in overtime to help the Nittany Lions snap their 18-game losing streak to the Buckeyes. Even better: Newbill beat all-world defender Aaron Craft on the final dagger. Watch the shot in this post. INSTANT HIGHLIGHT: Enjoy this, @PennStateMBB fans! It's D.J. Newbill's gigantic OT game-winner. WATCH – http://t.co/wavYgpuZkS — Penn State on BTN (@BTN_Penn_State) January 30, 2014 Newbill also hit this big bucket late in

Northwestern, Penn State notch B1G upsets

Our Super Wednesday doubleheader was a wild one, filled with two huge Big Ten upsets. Penn State kicked off the action with a memorable 71-70 win over No. 23 Ohio State in overtime. Northwestern followed with another huge upset, a 65-56 victory over No. 14 Wisconsin. Catch up on all the scores, stats and in-game video highlights in this post. [ MORE: Enter our Trip to the Big Ten Tournament Sweepstakes! ] NORTHWESTERN 65, WISCONSIN 56 | RECAP | BOX | PLAY-BY-PLAY (AP) Drew Crawford scored a season-high 30 points, JerShon Cobb added all 10 of his points in the