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BTN analyst Tim Doyle has been repping Jared Berggren’s underrated athleticism for some time now. To be fair, it’s pretty easy to do so after the Wisconsin senior threw down the second dunk in this clip vs. Penn State.
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This weekend featured a lot of games where the home team came out of the gate strong, though there were some second half scares as well. Indiana ran all over Minnesota in the first half on Saturday, opening up a 23-point lead after the first 20 minutes.
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It seems ludicrous that a Geek would pose such a question concerning the No. 11-ranked team according to Ken Pomeroy, but it’s fair. While the Buckeyes still look good in the computer’s eyes, but the computer’s eyes aren’t going to determine things like whether Ohio State will be invited to the Dance and how it will be seeded. So far on the season, OSU has faced three quality opponents (Duke, Kansas, and Illinois), and they’ve lost them all.
Illinois’ weaknesses were exposed in a road loss against a mediocre Purdue team last night. The concerning thing isn’t so much that Illinois lost—Purdue isn’t a terrible team, just a terrible offensive team—it’s that it lost to Purdue despite hitting 10 three-pointers (38% from three on the night). Thus, it appears the “Illinois wins when it shoots well” maxim is incorrect. This team can shoot well, and still lose.
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Wisconsin held a small lead late in the game on Thursday night, but Penn State wouldn’t go away for most of the second half. And then the 6-foot-10 Jared Berggren delivered two smashing dunks. On the first, he took a nice bounce pass from Mike Bruesewitz.
Over the next 10 days, BTN.com web editor Brent Yarina is going to unveil his 2012-13 preseason Big Ten Player Rankings one by one. The countdown will go in reverse order, of course, and each installment will include player stats and one video highlight from last season. Once the season starts, Yarina will release a weekly Player Rankings every Monday. Up first: Wisconsin’s Jared Berggren.
With Saturday’s win over Michigan, Purdue has seemingly punched its ticket to the Dance. At 9-7 in conference play, the Boilermakers are probably right where most expected them to finish this season–still solidly in the field of 68, but not a serious contender for the conference championship. But how they got to this point is very unexpected. Ever since the Baby Boilers arrived at West Lafayette, defense has been the calling card of this team:
Wisconsin big man Jared Berggren displayed his footwork and acrobatic ability against No. 3 Ohio State on Saturday. Early in the first half of Wisconsin’s 58-52 loss, Berggren backed his way into the lane against star Jared Sullinger, did a half spin and, with his back to the basket, flipped it in for two points. ESPN color analyst Dan Dakich thought there may have been a travel on the play, but either way, it was a nimble and impressive bucket for the big man. Watch the play now.
Every Sunday night during the hoops season, BTN.com web editor Brent Yarina recaps the week that was on the men’s hardwood and hands out his weekly honors. See Brent’s latest installment, for action from Nov. 21-27, in this post.