An interesting week in the Big Ten, as Michigan surged to the top of the conference as it looks for its outright conference championship since the 1985-86 season.
Penn State celebrated an early senior night (the Nittany Lions still have another home game remaining, but I guess they didn’t like their chances against Wisconsin) by rallying from an 11-point first half deficit to take down Ohio State. PSU got a big game out of junior guard D.J. Newbill (23 points, 9 shots), who had a better game than LaQuinton Ross (19 points, 12 shots). I mention those two because, outside of them, there was not a lot of offense. Tim Frazier had 16 points, but it took 12 shots to get there and it came with 6 turnovers.
There were two Big Ten men’s hoops games featured on our Super Wednesday doubleheader. In the first game, No. 16 Michigan rallied and beat Purdue, 77-76, on a buzzer-beater in overtime. Illinois notched a 60-49 victory over Nebraska in the second game. Catch up on all the action and get video highlights in this post.
You don’t have to tell Purdue’s Rapheal Davis that this has been a disappointing season. He’s living it. And, it’s not much fun. But the sophomore guard is soldiering on as the losses mount and the hope dwindles in West Lafayette.
At first glance it’s not a great menu of games this week, but we all know anything can happen. As the Big Ten hits the homestretch of the season, Michigan has a one-game lead in the title chase and the Wolverines should cruise in its two games this week. Michigan State sits one game out and Wisconsin trails by two. Can the Spartans and Badgers keep pace?
As the Big Ten hoops season comes down the final stretch, the play of several freshmen could make-or-break a team’s NCAA Tournament chances. Be it on the offensive or defensive end on the court, there are plenty of Big Ten freshmen who have made their presence felt.