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11:55 AMNorthwestern at RutgersWatch
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Power Rankings: Spartans fall in wake of 0-2 week

How tough is the Big Ten this season? A week ago, several people thought Michigan State might be the Big Ten’s top team. Today, following back-to-back losses, the Spartans land at No. 4 on my latest Power Rankings. Where does your team land? Find out in this post. Oh, and feel free to send me your thoughts, either in the comment box in this post or on Twitter (@BTNBrentYarina). [ RELATED: Where is your Big Ten team ranked in latest national polls? ] 1. Indiana, (24-3, 12-2) – In two critical games vs. Big Ten contender Michigan State this season,

Weekly Q&A: Listen to your Big Ten coach

The Big Ten men’s basketball coaches held their weekly Big Ten teleconference Monday with reporters from around the league, and we’ve posted the audio from each phone interview in the post below. BTN.com will post these media sessions each Monday right up to the Big Ten Men’s Basketball Tournament, and all of our audio can be found in our BTN.com audio archive. Listen to Coach Crean:  Listen to Coach McCaffery:  Listen to Coach Groce:  Listen to Coach Carmody: Listen to Penn State Assistant Coach Eugene Burroughs: Listen to Coach Painter:  Listen to Coach Izzo: Listen to Coach Ryan: Listen to

Team up: Ranking football & hoops coaching combos

Fun item from esteemed ex-colleague David Fox of Athlon Sports on the top football/basketball coaching tandems in the nation. Topping the list: Ohio State’s duo of Thad Matta and Urban Meyer. Michigan’s duo of Brady Hoke and John Beilein is No. 2 in the nation, according to Athlon. Here is how Athlon ranks the Big Ten tandems. Hard to argue with Fox putting Matta and Meyer on top. Matta has taken Ohio State to two Final Fours, three Big Ten tourney titles and a share of five regular-season crowns. Meyer won two national titles at Florida and debuted with a

Big Ten Geeks: The best B1G defense in a decade?

Wisconsin held Northwestern to a paltry 0.74 points per possession in one of the most methodical blowouts you’ll ever see. The Wildcats were just consistently outclassed, as the Badgers steadily built their lead until it had swelled to the final 28-point margin. Northwestern’s lowly output helped Wisconsin nudge its in-conference defensive efficiency down to 0.901 points per trip. If the Badgers can keep that number at that level, it would be the Big Ten’s lowest ever in the tempo-free era (since 2002-03). The conference has seen some fantastic defensive squads over those ten-plus seasons, but none of them were able

Illinois drops Penn State for fifth straight win

D.J. Richardson started slow Thursday but finished with 18 points and hit a pair of key free throws late in Illinois’ ugly 64-59 win over Penn State. The win was the fifth straight for Illinois (20-8, 7-7 Big Ten). But facing a team that hadn’t won since late December, it didn’t come easy. Jermaine Marshall’s 3-pointer brought Penn State within 62-59 with 5 seconds left. Richardson then sank a pair of free throws that sealed the win. Illinois (Stats | Roster | Schedule) vs. Penn State (Stats | Roster | Schedule) [ BOX | AP RECAP | SCORES | ALL PHOTOS | CONNECT | RAPID RECAPS | B1G DUNKS

Weekly Q & A: Listen to your Big Ten coach

The Big Ten men’s basketball coaches held their weekly Big Ten teleconference Monday with reporters from around the league, and we’ve posted the audio from each phone interview in the post below. BTN.com will post these media sessions each Monday right up to the Big Ten Men’s Basketball Tournament, and all of our audio can be found in our BTN.com audio archive. Listen to Coach Crean:  Listen to Coach McCaffery:  Listen to Coach Groce: Listen to Coach Carmody: Listen to coach Chambers: Listen to Coach Painter: Listen to Coach Izzo: Listen to Coach Ryan: Listen to Coach Beilein: Listen to

Power Rankings: Surging Illini continue ascent

John Groce’s Illini continued their torrid play this week, dispatching Purdue and Northwestern, teams they lost to earlier this season. Winners of four straight, Illinois has moved to No. 5 in my latest Power Rankings. Where does your team land? Find out in this post. Oh, and feel free to send me your thoughts, either in the comment box in this post or on Twitter (@BTNBrentYarina). [ RELATED: Where is your Big Ten team ranked in latest national polls? ] 1. Indiana, (23-3, 11-2) – About Will Sheehey‘s perfect 9-of-9 effort from the field in Saturday’s 83-55 rout of Purdue,

Big Ten Geeks: Getting ready for the Dance

We’re only a few weeks away from Selection Sunday, and there’s only a handful of games left for teams to pick up signature wins. This weekend, some did, and some didn’t. Iowa picked up an important win over Minnesota on Saturday, rallying from an early 16-point deficit to an impressive 21-point win. And frankly, this game was over about midway through the second half. The turning point came when Fran McCaffrey deployed a zone defense, which flummoxed the Gopher attack. This isn’t the first time that Minnesota has looked confused against a zone—Northwestern sprung the upset against the Gophers by

No. 4 Michigan thwarts Penn State upset bid

Trey Burke scored a season-high 29 points and freshman Glenn Robinson III matched a career high with 21 to help No. 4 Michigan bounce back from an embarrassing loss with a 79-71 victory over Penn State on Sunday. The Wolverines (22-4, 9-4 Big Ten) had dropped three of their previous four games, including a 23-point loss Tuesday night on the road against No. 8 Michigan State, and needed a half to shake off their slump. The Nittany Lions (8-17, 0-13) led by as many as eight points in the first half. Penn State’s Jermaine Marshall and Sasa Borovnjak each scored

'You're everything that's right about Penn State'

Penn State basketball coach Patrick Chambers pledged to donate $10 to THON 2013 for every student who attended the Iowa-Penn State game Thursday night. Friday, before the students embarked on 46 consecutive hours of dancing, Chambers addressed the THON participants and presented a $14,200 check from the men’s basketball program. “You are everything that’s right about Penn State,” Chambers told the students, who were about to continue the school’s annual philanthropic event that has raised more than $89 million for the Four Diamonds Fund at Penn State Hershey Children’s Hospital since 1977, according to the organization’s website. As Chambers presented