Latest Big Ten Pros News

NBA Draft: Where will ex-Big Ten players land?

Thursday night is the night several former Big Ten basketball players have dreamed about their entire lives. In a matter of hours, guys like Meyers Leonard, Jared Sullinger and Draymond Green, among others, will hear their name called at the 2012 NBA Draft. When will they get picked? And by which teams? Dive inside this post for all of the latest mock drafts from around the web. And don’t forget to watch BTN.com’s NBA draft interviews and features before the event starts.

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Big Ten products up for 2012 ESPY Awards

It’s hard to believe it’s been 20 years, huh? The 2012 ESPY Awards will mark the 20th installment of ESPN’s annual awards show. It all happens Wednesday, July 11 at 9 p.m. ET in Los Angeles. As is the case every year, Big Ten products are up for their share of awards. See all of the Big Ten nominees in this post. Also, you can vote on the ESPY Awards here.

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2012 NBA Draft: A fun mock draft and mock links

What if the NBA drafted solely on NCAA production and didn’t stress potential or what a player could become? According to ESPN.com’s Eamonn Brennan, the Big Ten would dominate Thurday’s NBA draft lottery. After the obvious choice, Kentucky’s Anthony Davis at No. 1, Brennan has a Big Ten player making up the rest of his production-based mock top 5. See Brennan’s list in this post, plus get all your links to mock drafts.

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Kirk Ferentz buys "Stanzi" print, complete with quote

It’s been a few years since Ricky Stanzi became a cult hero. If you don’t remember the exact moment, it happened when the former Iowa QB gave Fox’s Chris Meyers this quote following the 2010 Orange Bowl: “There is nothing better than being American. This is the greatest feeling. If you don’t love it, leave it. USA, No. 1.” The quote reads great, but it’s even better when you hear it.

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Howard, Rose celebrate in Miami locker room

Juwan Howard and Jalen Rose came so close to winning the ultimate prize as members of the Fab Five at Michigan. On Thursday night, Howard, an 18-year NBA veteran, finally got to raise the championship hardware as his Miami Heat won the NBA Finals. Where does Rose fit into all of this? He’s an analyst for ESPN, so he was able to congratulate his former teammate and celebrate with him in the locker room. Watch video of it, courtesy of BigTenTracker’s YouTube page in this post.

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WSJ: Which colleges produced most NBA minutes?

The Wall Street Journal has an interesting article that breaks down which colleges produced the most minutes in the NBA during this strike-shortened campaign. Duke, to no surprise, landed at No. 1, with 21,609 minutes. But what about Big Ten teams? Ohio State (7,903 minutes) came in 13th to lead 10 Big Ten teams. See the breakdown and the players who contributed the minutes in this post.

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Purdue hoops fan? Check out this T-Shirt

I post this for my Purdue fans. I came across a Brad Miller shirt on the internet today, and it’s pretty awesome. The shirt, which can be purchased on skreened.com, features nine squares on the front, each one representing a different jersey Miller has worn during his career, starting with Purdue and ending with the Minnesota Timberwolves.

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Did You See This? Tyler Sash's Birthday Cake

Who doesn’t like a pair of Air Jordan’s? One former Big Ten football player is such a fan, the shoe makes up his birthday cake. Ex-Hawkeye Tyler Sash may have celebrated his birthday late last month, but we’re just now seeing his birthday cake, thanks to a tweet from NFL teammate and former Buckeye Jake Ballard (@NYG_J_Ballard85). See the cake in this post.

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Behind-the-scenes with MSU's Trenton Robinson

Michigan State safety Trenton Robinson didn’t expect to last until the final rounds of the 2012 NFL Draft. That’s what happened, though, and it made for some frustration and tense moments at his draft watching party. Eventually, Robinson heard his name — in the sixth round, to be exact. And while it came later than expected, Robinson is thrilled to be a San Francisco 49er. Watch a YouTube video of his draft watching party in this post.

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Which undrafted B1G players signed free-agent deals?

Immediately following the 2012 NFL Draft on Saturday night, undrafted players began inking free-agent deals. The list of players continues to grow, but see the Big Ten products who have signed and check out some of their tweets in this post. Here’s the official list from NFL.com. And don’t forget about the 41 Big Ten players who were drafted during the three-day event.

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All-Access: Whitney Mercilus on NFL draft day

Former Illinois defensive end Whitney Mercilus didn’t have to wait long to hear his name called during the 2012 NFL Draft. With the 26th pick of Thursday night’s first round, the Houston Texans selected Mercilus, the first of four Illinois players taken in the opening 48 picks. Check out all the Big Ten draft picks and see who inked free-agent contracts. BTN cameras were at Mercilus’ family draft watching party in Akron, Ohio, to capture the nerves and jubilation of the memorable night. Watch the behind-the-scenes feature now.

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41 Big Ten Products selected in 2012 NFL Draft

The 2012 NFL Draft came to a close Saturday night. Forty-one former Big Ten stars were selected during the three-day event in New York, including four first-rounders: Iowa’s Riley Reiff, Illinois’ Whitney Mercilus, Wisconsin Kevin Zeitler and Illinois’ A.J. Jenkins. Mercilus and Jenkins were the first of four Illini drafted in the first 48 picks. Even more impressive, four of the Big Ten’s first six players off the board were Illini. Catch up on the entire draft with FoxSports.com’s Draft Tracker and see all the Big Ten picks in this post.

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Big Ten Products on MLB Rosters

The MLB season opens Wednesday, so it’s time to find out which Big Ten products are on MLB active rosters. See the entire list in this post. Forgetting a name? Send it in as a comment at the bottom.

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Ex-Badger Butch wins weekly NBDL honor

Former Wisconsin basketball player Brian Butch was one of two guys named NBA Development League Co-Performers of the Week for games played March 12-18. The former BTN contributor — yes, he can blog, too — averaged 19 points, 12.5 rebounds and 5.5 assists in leading the Bakersfield Jam to two wins. As you might guess from the stats, Butch posted a pair of double-doubles. On the season, in eight games, he is averaging 18.4 points and 12 rebounds.

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Spartan product proposes after Super Bowl win

Former Michigan State star linebacker Greg Jones won a ring and handed one out Sunday night in Indianapolis. That’s right, the New York Giants’ rookie proposed to his girlfriend, Mandy Piechowski, as confetti fell from the rafters of Lucas Oil Stadium following Super Bowl XLVI. Evidently, Jones had practice squad tight end Christian Hopkins hold the ring during the game and give it to him after the final play. Piechowski said yes, of course (see pictures of the proposal!). And here’s a picture of the proud groom-to-be, courtesy of teammate Mark Herzlich’s Twitter account.

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