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Big Ten Geeks: Purdue, the anti-Purdue

With Saturday’s win over Michigan, Purdue has seemingly punched its ticket to the Dance. At 9-7 in conference play, the Boilermakers are probably right where most expected them to finish this season–still solidly in the field of 68, but not a serious contender for the conference championship. But how they got to this point is very unexpected. Ever since the Baby Boilers arrived at West Lafayette, defense has been the calling card of this team: Year    Points Per Possession       B10 Rank       Opponent Points Per Possession       B10 Rank    07-08 1.06 4th 0.94 2nd

Shurna, Cheaney Among Profiles On Next 'Journey'

On this week’s “The Journey: Big Ten Basketball 2012,” at 8 p.m. ET Sunday, our cameras take you behind John Shurna’s record-breaking day as the senior became Northwestern’s all-time leading scorer last weekend against Minnesota. We also profile Calbert Cheaney, the Big Ten’s all-time leading scorer, who has returned to Indiana following a career in the NBA, both as a player and assistant coach. Watch a bonus clip now and see what else we’ll be profiling on Sunday’s show in this post. Also, follow the show on Twitter: @BTNJourney. Here Shurna talks about hearing from Billy McKinney, the previous all-time

Three-Pointers: A Big Ten Battle for Tourney Byes

With a little more than a week to go, it has come down to Michigan State, Ohio State and Michigan in the race for the Big Ten title. But other story lines exist. Which four teams will secure first-round byes in the Big Ten tourney? The Spartans, Buckeyes and Wolverines look like locks for three of the slots. But who will get the fourth? Wisconsin? Indiana? Purdue? Or, how about white-hot Iowa? Speaking of the Hawkeyes, some wonder if they can forge an NCAA-worthy resume. Iowa is 15-13 overall, 7-8 in the Big Ten. Its 4-3 mark vs. the Top

Big Ten Geeks: Minnesota's Bubble Bursts

Another night, another set of at-large hopes dashed. On Wednesday evening, Minnesota hoped to keep their NCAA Tournament hopes alive, at least for another few days, with a crucial home matchup against Michigan State. Things were looking up when the Gophers took a nine-point lead with just over 10 minutes remaining. Maybe Minnesota really would pull this off and get back onto the bubble. Maybe not. The Gophers made just two field goals over the final 10 minutes, with one of them being a meaningless three with two seconds left. The split of efficiencies completely changed over the final 16

Hawkeyes stun No. 15 Badgers, 67-66

Matt Gatens scored 33 points and grabbed three rebounds to lift Iowa to a 67-66 upset win over No. 15 Wisconsin on Thursday at Carver-Hawkeye Arena in Iowa City. Iowa (15-13) shot 48 percent from the field (24-of-50). It was the second straight career-high for Gatens, who had 30 points in Iowa’s win over then-No. 18 Indiana on Sunday (full recap). Iowa fans rushed the court (see the video in this post) to celebrate the win. Iowa 67, Wisconsin 66: BOX | RECAP | SCOREBOARD FINAL: The Hawkeyes shot 10-of-18 from three-point range during the game, good for 56 percent. Iowa

Show off your Big Ten colors on Facebook

Attention Facebook users! If you’re looking for a very cool header photo for your personal timeline, then we have some treats for you. Embedded in this post are 12 special Big Ten school photos suitable for your timeline. Have a look inside this post, then just click on your favorite image to get full-sized graphic. From there you you can right click the big picture, save it, then upload it to your Facebook page in time for the Big Ten Men’s Basketball Tournament. And don’t forget to come visit the BTN on Facebook at Facebook.com/BTN for more fun features including

Men's Tourney Tickets Go On Sale Monday

Both all-session and single-session tickets for the 2012 Big Ten Men’s Basketball Tournament go on sale to the general public at 10 a.m. ET on Monday, Feb. 27. You can buy them through Ticketmaster (www.ticketmaster.com /800-745-3000) and through the Bankers Life Fieldhouse box office. The tourney runs March 8 -11 and all of the games are at the Fieldhouse. Single-session ticket prices range from $20 to $80 depending on the session and seat location. All-session tickets are available for $240 or $175. Orders will be limited to eight all-session or single-session tickets. Get more info over at BigTen.org on their

Big Ten Geeks: Heartbreak in Evanston

It was looking like it would be an historic night in Evanston. In front of a sold-out Welsh-Ryan Arena, the Northwestern Wildcats were locked in a tight battle with the visiting Michigan Wolverines. With a win, Northwestern would move one step closer to the 9-9 conference record that would almost certainly earn the program its first-ever NCAA Tournament appearance. As a cherry on top, the Wildcats’ signature nonconference win was looking even better as Seton Hall had just finished off an impressive win over Georgetown. If Bill Carmody’s team could just pull out this victory, it could be argued that

Dienhart: My Top 25 Players This Week

With his play in recent weeks, Michigan State’s Draymond Green has solidified his hold on the top spot in my weekly player rankings. The senior is a do-it-all talent who’s driven to leave campus standing side-by-side with players like Mateen Cleaves and Magic Johnson as an all-time great en route to leading the Spartans to a Big Ten title and spot in the Final Four. I am not gonna bet against him. Your list is surely different than mine. Tell me what you think in the comments area of this post. State your case – I’m all ears. And just

Dienhart: Ranking the week's Big Ten games

Some interesting games are on tap this week, with the headliner being Wisconsin’s visit to Ohio State on Sunday. Also, front-running Michigan State may face a tough test at Minnesota, where the Gophers are a pesky team. But of all of the contenders, Michigan has the toughest tests in its quest for its first Big Ten crown since Antoine Joubert and his Jheri curl were roaming the court in 1985-86, with a game at Northwestern and a visit from Purdue. What about the other games? See how Dienhart ranks all 12 contests in this post. 1. Wisconsin at Ohio State,