Purdue picked up a huge victory for their at-large profile at Illinois on Wednesday. This game was mostly decided in the first half, as the Boilers jumped out to a 13-point lead after 16 minutes. Bruce Weber’s team couldn’t stop the smaller Purdue lineup, and it failed to take advantage at the other end by getting the ball to Meyers Leonard. From that point forward, the Illini played much better, even using a triangle-and-two to good effect in the second half, but the Boilers would never fully relinquish their lead. The split of the efficiencies tells the story of too little, too late:
What better way to end your work week than by getting caught up on all the Big Ten news right here? Selection Sunday is March 11. Until then, here’s a projection of the NCAA field from one of the smartest men in the business, Mike Huguenin of Yahoo! Sports.
Draymond Green scored 22 points, grabbed 10 rebounds and handed out five assists as No. 8 Michigan State defeated No. 17 Wisconsin 69-55 on Thursday. Keith Appling had 20 points and Derrick Nix added 12 (see full box score). The Spartans (21-5, 10-3 Big Ten) have won four straight – the longest active streak in the conference – and six of their last seven games. After building an early cushion, Penn State needed to hold off a late charge by Iowa to win 69-64. Tim Frazier sparked Penn State (12-15), as he scored 18 points (see full box score). Dive into this post for more details and links.
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It’s that time of the week where the best of your questions are posted and I do my very best to answer them. As you would suspect, there are plenty of basketball questions—and some very concerned Ohio State fans.
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Say what you want about Illinois coach Bruce Weber. Debate his in-game strategy, complain about his inability to land the mega recruit, lament his seemingly kid-glove treatment of players. All legit beefs. But no one can argue with Weber’s sincerity and honesty.
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Big game tonight, with Wisconsin invading Michigan State in a Big Ten battle of ranked teams. But that’s not the only news. Check out the latest scuttlebutt in Big Ten territory, including this story: Already making fall plans? Thank Matt Murschek of the Orlando Sentinel for looking ahead to five killer Big Ten games in 2012. Find more links lower in this post.
If you missed the nightcap of our BTN Super Wednesday doubleheader, presented by Buffalo Wild Wings, you missed quite the display from Illinois’ Joseph Bertrand. On a few occasions, it was as if he was putting on his own dunk contest. Two of Bertrand’s better dunks can be seen in this post. As for the one posted here, well, let’s just say the Illinois sophomore nearly jumped out of the gym. BTN announcer Gus Johnson loved it so much, he was going crazy during the replays. It was that good – even though it came in a 67-62 home loss. Don’t miss Bertrand’s other nice slam, a putback of a missed jumper, in this post.