No. 25 Michigan beat reeling Illinois (recap) and Purdue topped Northwestern (recap) in Big Ten men’s hoops action Sunday. Gus Johnson was on the call for the Wildcats-Boilermakers game, and we posted his best calls here. Catch up on both games with our BTN.com scoreboard and get stats, video and recaps in this post. Throughout the season, BTN.com editors watch for the best highlights and post them in our Did You See This? feature.
Prior to his breakout performance against Ohio State, Adreian Payne had scored double figures in exactly two Big Ten games as a Spartan. And although his offense was certainly a big reason for Michigan State’s victory, his defense probably deserves more credit. Payne did something that few ever will–make Jared Sullinger look like a bad basketball player. The Ohio State big man was frustrated all game long, and although he had 17 points and 16 rebounds, it came at a cost of 10 turnovers (not to mention 4 fouls).
Just as we did during 2010-2011 hoops season, we’re archiving Gus Johnson’s greatest calls this season. Johnson is calling men’s basketball for BTN all winter long. We clip and post his best calls and archive them here during games, so bookmark the page and come back all season right up through the Big Ten tourney. Right now, watch Johnson call Drew Crawford’s powerful one-handed slam and get all of his best calls from Sunday night’s Northwestern-Purdue game in this post.
Purdue’s Matt Painter has been challenging his players to show more effort. Terone Johnson exhibited just the kind of hustle his coach is seeking Sunday night. On one particular play, Johnson went into the crowd to save a loose ball and suffered a pretty nasty spill in the process. After a few seconds on the ground, Johnson got up and found his way back on the court. Making the play even better, Johnson got the ball back, drove the lane and hit a teardrop. It was quite a sequence. Watch it here. If you’re thinking you’ve seen a Boiler make a similar play, you’re right. Dru Anthrop put on a balancing act there in December.
Not only was No. 12 Michigan State’s upset victory at No. 3 Ohio State huge for the Spartans (AP recap), but it did wonders to the Big Ten title race. Entering Saturday night’s contest at Value City Arena, where the Buckeyes hadn’t lost during the Jared Sullinger era, Ohio State had a chance to move two games ahead of the Spartans and the other legit Big Ten title contenders (Michigan and Wisconsin). That didn’t happen, of course, and now four teams are within one game of the top spot in the Big Ten.