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Ranking the Games: Michigan State at Iowa, and then....

The best Big Ten game this week is the first one, tonight in Iowa City when Michigan State visits Iowa. Each team is looking for a win to keep pace with Big Ten leader Michigan. The Wolverines beat each team last week, adding to the sense of urgency for both clubs. Here is my ranking of this week’s action. [ MORE: Check out Stephen Bardo’s latest Big Ten Power Rankings ] 1. Michigan State at Iowa, Tues., Jan. 28. This game has no peer this week. Each team lost to Michigan last week. So, a win is needed to keep

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: Listen to coach Tom Izzo: Listen to coach Bo Ryan: Listen to coach John Beilein: Listen to coach Thad Matta: Listen to coach Richard Pitino: Listen to coach Tim

BTN LiveBIG: Monday Download

Before the Super Bowl this weekend, be sure to read about the great work Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson is doing in his community. Not a Seahawks fan? LiveBIG also profiled Judi’s House, founded by then-Denver Broncos quarterback Brian Griese, to help kids cope with loss. Literacy programs at the University of Minnesota recently received recognition from First Lady Michelle Obama. The University of Michigan received two grants, totaling $4.35 million, from the William Davidson Foundation to support university programs impacting economic activity in southeast Michigan. Read more about these initiatives here. The men’s lacrosse program at The Ohio State

Fans photobomb ESPN with 'Free Bieber' sign

The “Free Beiber” trend is sweeping the nation and some Penn State basketball fans decided to partake in the madness during Thursday night’s Penn State-Nebraska men’s basketball game. Here is a photo of a fan who managed to get himself and his “Free Bieber” sign on TV last night during the broadcast. As you can see, it looks like Brook Weisbrod and Adam Amin have no idea they are being photobombed at the moment. Penn State Basketball pic.twitter.com/aBDPPRIy6n — Dan (@sharpalright) January 24, 2014 Of course, the sign is referring to freeing pop singer Justin Bieber from jail, after he

B1G Clicks: Tracking today's Big Ten trends

Did you miss something while you stepped away from your computer? We’re tracking some of the best Big Ten social media happenings and posting them all right here. Check out today’s edition, including a photo of Penn State fans photobombing ESPN announcers at last nights Penn State-Nebraska men’s hoops game. Like what you see? We do this every weekday. Visit our Clicks archive. Here are Friday’s B1G Clicks: Penn State Basketball pic.twitter.com/aBDPPRIy6n — Dan (@sharpalright) January 24, 2014 Our take: Penn State fans get in on the “Free Bieber” madness. ESPN College Gameday before today's @MSU_Basketball practice. #GoGreenWearWhite @ESPNCBB @ESPN_ReceDavis

Big Ten Geeks: Is Nik Stauskas the Big Ten POY?

Michigan’s offense continued its surge into the nation’s elite in an impressive win over Iowa. In true Beilein-ball fashion, it was a high conversion rate on twos and a low turnover rate that propelled the Wolverines. Nik Stauskas is making a case for Big Ten player of the year, and he continues to show that he is #notjustashooter: INSTANT HIGHLIGHT: What was better here, @umichbball fans: Nik Stauskas' crossover? Or the dime? WATCH – http://t.co/VHl3YsbtSH — Michigan on BTN (@BTN_Michigan) January 23, 2014 There are still plenty of conference games to be played, but Stauskas currently has the most impressive

B1G Hoops: Ohio State, Penn State end losing streak

There were two Big Ten men’s hoops games on the docket tonight, and both were filled with plenty of excitement. Ohio State kicked off the evening with a much-needed 62-55 win over Illinois, ending the Buckeyes’ four-game losing skid. Penn State followed with an impressive 58-52 victory over Nebraska, giving the Nittany Lions their first Big Ten win of the season. Catch up on all the scores, stats and video highlights in this post. [ MORE: Enter our Trip to the Big Ten Tournament Sweepstakes! ] OHIO STATE 62, ILLINOIS 55 | RECAP | BOX | PLAY-BY-PLAY (AP) LaQuinton Ross

Throwback Thursday Q&A: Penn State's Joe Crispin

Joe Crispin was a scoring machine throughout his Penn State career (1997-2001). The guard averaged 15.6 points in four seasons, thanks in large part to burying 308 3-pointers (2.4 per game). Currently, Crispin, who played 10 pro seasons, including stints with the NBA’s Suns and Lakers, is retired and runs Crispin Basketball in southern New Jersey. The former Nittany Lion guard has four children, all under the age of 10, and is preparing to get into coaching. Read BTN.com’s full email Q&A with Crispin. [ MORE: Previous Q&As: Chris Kramer | Damian Johnson | A.J. Guyton ] BTN.com: I’m curious,

Ranking the games: Pick a Michigan game this week

Ohio State at Nebraska kicked off the week with a rare Monday night game. And, it was a doozy, as the Cornhuskers sent the Buckeyes to a fourth loss in a row. Was that a portent of things to come this week? A full slate of games is on our doorstep, highlighted by Michigan at Michigan State on Saturday. Before that, Iowa plays at Michigan on Wednesday in another big Big Ten game. Here’s a look and ranking of this week’s contests. Ranked teams, beware! [ MORE: Most pivotal player for every Big Ten team ] 1. Michigan at Michigan

Most pivotal player for every B1G hoops team

The college basketball season is just past the midway point, and the Big Ten picture is beginning to take shape. With five teams ranked in the latest polls, it’s clear the Big Ten is, once again, one of the nation’s elite conferences. The conference’s terrific star players have a lot to do with the Big Ten’s standing. But what about the players who aren’t household names, the all-important role players or glue guys who better their respective teams? Here is a list of the most pivotal player for every Big Ten hoops team, listed in order of the Big Ten