Latest Big Ten Blast News

Dienhart: Let's look at the week ahead

Can you see it? I can. It’s stratification in this crazy Big Ten title chase. Ohio State, Michigan State and Michigan sit atop the standings with 5-2 league marks. Right behind that trio are Wisconsin, Illinois and Purdue with three conference defeats.

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All 12 Women's Teams Play Tonight

Two of tonight’s six women’s basketball games air on BTN/BTN2Go: No. 20 Nebraska at No. 10 Ohio State (6 p.m.) and No. 13 Purdue at Indiana (8 p.m.). The other games: No. 22 Penn State at Illinois, Wisconsin at Iowa, Michigan State at Minnesota, Michigan at Northwestern. Full scoreboard over here, latest standings right here, and full women’s stat leaders are here.  Remember, if your TV provider offers BTN2Go, you can watch those games and the rest of our TV network programming live online and via your iPhone and iPad.

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Dienhart: 5 Jump Early to NFL Draft

College football players had until Jan. 15 to declare for the NFL Draft, which begins Thursday, April 26 and continues through Saturday, April 28 (get more info at NFL.com). The Big Ten saw five players (Illinois’ Whitney Mercilus, Iowa’s Riley Reiff, Michigan State’s Jerel Worthy and Edwin Baker and Wisconsin’s Peter Konz) opt for the pros, so here’s my quick look at each one along with some handy links.

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Big Ten Stock Watch: 5 up, 5 down

One-third of the way through the Big Ten schedule, it’s time to compile a quick stock report. What we’re analyzing here is whose stock is up and whose is down since Big Ten play opened late last month. In this post, you’ll find five players who have improved their play since the real season tipped and five who have struggled during that time.

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Dienhart: Intrastate battle headlines slate

The Big Ten features 11 men’s basketball games this week, including an interesting non-league contest that has Michigan playing at Arkansas. Will this week’s slate of games feature as many upsets, further jumbling the conference race? Here’s how I rank the games this week.

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Badgers tab Canada to run offense

(UWBadgers.com) – Wisconsin head coach Bret Bielema took another step toward completing his coaching staff by naming Matt Canada as the Badgers’ offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach on Tuesday. Canada spent last season in the same role at Northern Illinois, helping the Huskies to an 11-3 record, a MAC championship and a victory in the GoDaddy.com Bowl.

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Big Ten hands out weekly hoops honors

The Big Ten Conference released its Men’s Basketball Players of the Week for Jan. 9-15 action. It was a crazy week of action that saw several upsets, including Northwestern handing Michigan State its first Big Ten loss and first loss in it last 16 games. See the conference’s latest weekly winners and find out what they did to earn the prestigious honors in this post.

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Our Big Ten Week in Review

Our 2012 is off to a roaring start here at BTN with another busy week in the books so we decided to take a look back at some of the bigger news and events just in case you missed anything. Last weekend Penn State hired Bill O’Brien as their football coach and on Sunday The Journey: Big Ten Basketball 2012″  debuted and it returns this Sunday at 8 p.m. ET. We offer up bonus video clips like this each week.

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Minnesota tops Indiana; Wisconsin drops Purdue

Minnesota survived a furious second-half comeback effort by Indiana in Bloomington to beat the Hoosiers 77-74 to win the Gophers’ first conference game of the season. Cody Zeller led Indiana with 23 points and eight rebounds. Have you seen our “Best of Gus Johnson” video calls yet? We’ve got some good ones from tonight. Earlier in another conference game, Ben Brust went 4-of-7 from the field and led five Wisconsin players in double digits with 13 points as the Badgers defeated Purdue 67-62.

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Wisconsin center Konz declares for NFL draft

Wisconsin junior center Peter Konz announced Tuesday that he will forgo his senior season and enter his name into the 2012 NFL Draft. A Rimington Trophy finalist this season, Konz started 31 games at center for Wisconsin over the last three years. This year he was named first-team All-American by the American Football Coaches’ Association and Pro Football Weekly. He was also a first-team All-Big Ten choice by the league’s media.

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Dienhart: It's Big Ten Mailbag time

You have questions, I have answers in this week’s mailbag. Many of you are still in football mode, wondering about the recently completed bowl season—while also wanting to sneak a peek toward 2012. Here we go.

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Dienhart: Big Ten, Pac-12 pose many possibilities

How exciting would it be to see Wisconsin play USC in the Rose Bowl to kick off a season? Well, It could happen under a new partnership announced today by the Big Ten and Pac-12 that will include inter-conference scheduling across all sports as well as cross-promotion on each league’s TV network.

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Head Decides to Leave Illinois

Illinois released a statement Tuesday announcing that sophomore guard Crandall Head has left the Illinois basketball program. Head played in 26 career games with the Illini, averaging 1.2 points. Last season he played in 17 games and nine games this season.  “We are disappointed with Crandall’s decision not to continue his career at Illinois, but ultimately we want what is best for him,” Illinois coach Bruce Weber said in the statement.

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Dienhart: Who will replace UW's Chryst?

Wisconsin suffered a big blow with offensive coordinator Paul Chryst taking the Pitt job. In eight seasons at Wisconsin, Chryst built some of the nation’s top offenses while at Wisconsin, helping lead the Badgers to consecutive Rose Bowl appearances the past two seasons.

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Dienhart: Ohio State hires UNC's Withers

It had been speculated, and now it’s true: Everett Withers has been hired as co-defensive coordinator and assistant head coach at Ohio State. Withers was the interim head coach at North Carolina this season after Butch Davis was fired in July. Withers, who also was UNC’s defensive coordinator, guided the Tar Heels to a 7-5 mark and spot in the Independence Bowl vs. Missouri on December 26.

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