Only a freshman, Trey Burke is playing like one of the nation’s elite point guards. And the nation is taking notice, evidenced by Burke being named a finalist for the annual Bob Cousy Award on Wednesday. The Wolverine averages 14 points, 3.2 rebounds and 5.0 assists per game, and he’s joined on the list by Big Ten rivals Aaron Craft, of Ohio State, and Jordan Taylor, of Wisconsin. See the complete list of finalists.
Wisconsin and Michigan State squared off last night in a game that will not help the Big Ten’s national image. Via a combination of slow pace, good defense, and missed shots that both teams would normally make, the Spartans and Badgers labored for points. It took Michigan State over 13 minutes of game time to break into double digits–and even then they were only down two points. Wisconsin’s shooting nightmare that began against Iowa persisted, and it truly looked like the first team to 50 would win.
In case you missed it, there was a thrilling and – depending on your allegiance – controversial finish to the Michigan State-Wisconsin men’s hoops game Tuesday night. Trailing by three in overtime, Ryan Evans banked in what looked like a game-tying 3-pointer just as the buzzer sounded. The officials reviewed the call for nearly five minutes, and they eventually waved the basket off, giving Michigan State the 63-60 victory. Watch the shot and all of its replays now.
Tim Hardaway’s son may star in Ann Arbor, but there’s a point guard in East Lansing who can cross it over well enough to make the elder Hardaway smile. Michigan State’ Keith Appling showed off his killer crossover in Tuesday’s thrilling victory at Wisconsin, and he didn’t need the usually required two hands, either. Appling used his left hand only to break ankles and drop jaws – although some people will argue it was a travel. To make the crossover even better, Appling parlayed the move into a driving layup. Watch the move and bucket now.
Usually, it’s Sam Thompson on the receiving end of a fantastic alley-oop. In the closing moments of Tuesday’s game against Nebraska, the exciting Ohio State freshman was on the other end of the highlight-reel play, setting up J.D. Weatherspoon for a ferocious slam. Weatherspoon can get up himself. Watch the pretty alley-oop now from Ohio State’s easy 71-40 win over Nebraska at Value City Arena.
No. 11 Michigan State beat No. 19 Wisconsin in an overtime thriller Tuesday night at the Kohl Center (recap), while No. 7 Ohio State blew out Nebraska (recap). Catch up on all the action on our Big Ten scoreboard and find stats, recaps and video in this post. There was a crazy finish to the aforementioned Spartans-Badgers game that we’ll probably be talking about the rest of the season. Watch the video of Ryan Evans’ 3-pointer at the buzzer that was waved off following a lengthy review.
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One week of Big Ten play in the books, it’s time to release my latest Big Ten men’s hoops power rankings. The rankings are not meant to mimic the Big Ten standings. What fun would that be? They aren’t scientific, either. They’re simply my thoughts on where each Big Ten team stands right now and who would win on a neutral court. Agree? Disagree? Tweet @BTNBrentYarina or leave your comments below. See Brent’s rankings in this post.