It was a busy Saturday of Big Ten men’s hoops, with nine teams in action. The Big Ten went 7-2, headlined by No. 20 Indiana moving to 10-0 with a win over Notre Dame (recap). Also victorious, Iowa took down Drake (recap), Nebraska dropped Alcorn State (recap), No. 23 Michigan State topped Bowling Green (recap), Northwestern held off CCSU (recap), No. 18 Michigan blew away Alabama A&M (recap) and No. 2 Ohio State rallied past South Carolina (recap). On the losing end, No. 19 Illinois lost to UNLV (recap) and Purdue fell to Butler (recap). Catch up on all the action on our Big Ten scoreboard and get video and recaps in this post.
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(AP) Ohio State forward Jared Sullinger left the game against South Carolina after getting kicked in the left foot Saturday. X-rays showed Sullinger did not have a fracture in the foot, but he did not return after heading to the locker room early in the first half. Sullinger limped to the locker room less than five minutes into the second-ranked Buckeyes game at the Colonial Life Arena.
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Normally this space is reserved for agonizing over the numbers, details, and minutiae of the Big Ten. Today, I’m instead going to focus criticism on Shane Ryan’s criticism of Bo Ryan, Wisconsin, and slow basketball in general. I’ll leave it to John Gasaway to put to bed the ridiculous notion that pacing a basketball game at 60 possessions instead of 65 possessions means the demise of Dr. Naismith’s gift. Instead I’ll focus on Shane Ryan’s apparent insight into the workings of Bo Ryan’s mind (the Ryans are not related so I’ll henceforth refer to the coach as “Bo” to avoid confusion). Ryan’s telepathy informs us that Wisconsin plays slow in order to “neutralize talent.” Specifically, Bo wants to “limit opportunities” and avoid “a fair fight, because he knows he’d lose.”
With nine Big Ten men’s basketball games on Saturday and eight teams in the RPI’s Top 50, our Rick Pizzo, Derek Rackley and Tim Doyle take you into this pre-holiday weekend on The Big Ten Pulse at 7 p.m. ET tonight with an in-depth conversation on the overall depth of the Big Ten as each team builds out their tournament resumes. For example, Northwestern is 8-1 after racking up another win Thursday night. Also, tonight, Michigan State’s Draymond Green will join Pizzo, Rackley and Doyle to tell us how the Spartans’ tough games early on have helped the team come together.
Northwestern showed no ill effects from its 10-day layoff in a 30-point shellacking of Texas Southern. The impressive results, as usual for the Wildcats, were at the offensive end, where they posted the second-highest efficiency allowed by the Tigers all season. Texas Southern has faced a couple teams relevant to the Wildcats, so the efficiencies posted by each team against the Tigers may be enlightening:
BTN lead basketball analyst Jim Jackson needs no introduction. The former Ohio State star and two-time Big Ten Player of the Year has his number retired in the Value City Arena rafters, after all. He also had a long and successful NBA career. Oh, and he has a son, Traevon, who is a freshman basketball player at Wisconsin. Prior to Wisconsin’s game Wednesday night against Savannah State, Jim went one-on-one with his son at the Kohl Center. Watch the feature now.
BTN analyst Jim Jackson talked one-on-one with his son Traevon who is a freshman on the Wisconsin basketball team as the elder Jackson was in Madison calling Thursday night’s game. No. 15 Wisconsin used stingy defense to defeat Savannah State 66-33 while in the other game Northwestern topped Texas Southern 81-51, thanks in part to hitting 13-of-30 threes for a 43 percent night. Jump inside for recaps, stats and video highlights.