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Minnesota’s Trevor Mbakwe threw down an incredible dunk in the second half of the opening game of the Big Ten Men’s Basketball Tournament against Illinois then Illinois’ Brandon Paul responded with a nice move at the other end of the court. Watch it here, and follow all of our Big Ten Men’s Basketball Tournament action now.
Four days after showing the basketball world how high he can get up, Rodney Williams decided to show everyone how long he can hang in the air. Spoiler alert: It’s a LONG time. At the end of the first half of the Penn State-Minnesota game on Saturday, Williams defied gravity, once again, with his latest highlight-reel alley-oop. Watch the dunk here.
The last two nights in the Big Ten have provided college basketball fans with two exciting upsets and a pair of the more impressive blocked shots of the season. On Tuesday night, it was Rodney Williams jumping out of the gym to block a final-minute Victor Oladipo 3-pointer. And tonight, it was Eric May coming from behind to swat Terone Johnson in the final minute. Which block was better? Watch both in this post and vote below.
Everybody knows Minnesota’s Rodney Williams can jump. He’s one of the nation’s elite dunkers, after all. In Tuesday night’s upset over No. 1 Indiana, Williams showed off his ups on the defensive end. And the athletic senior’s block of Victor Oladipo’s late 3 was just as pretty as any of his highlight dunks. Watch Williams soar to block Oladipo’s shot in the final minute of the upset here.
Since his 360 slam in mid-December, Rodney Williams has been uncharacteristically quiet on the jaw-dropping dunk front. He’s had his share of slams (watch in our Dunk Archive), but nothing to the level we’re accustom to. That changed Wednesday at Northwestern, when Williams was on the receiving end of a nice alley-oop. To be honest, the pass, from Joe Coleman, might have been as pretty as the dunk. Watch it now.
He did it again. High-flying Rodney Williams delighted the Williams Arena crowd Tuesday night, this time with another highlight-reel 360 slam. Remember this 360 from last season? Well, this full revolution was just as sweet – yes, even if Williams didn’t stick the landing. Watch Williams’ latest jaw-dropping poke here and check out a couple Trevor Mbawke putbacks in this post.
Put Minnesota’s Rodney Williams in a dunk contest against pretty much anyone, and he’s going to hold his own. What about 2011 NBA Dunk Contest winner Blake Griffin? Who knows how the Minnesota junior would fair against arguably the best dunker, but BTN color commentator Eddie Johnson made this interesting comment about one of Williams’ two highlight-reel jams Saturday: “That had Blake Griffin written all over it.” You know what? It did — only Williams actually dunked it. Watch Williams’ ridiculous jam now and compare it to Griffin’s in this post. Also, watch Williams’ alley-oop Saturday in this post.
It came in a losing effort, but Minnesota high-flyer Rodney Williams struck again Tuesday night. The Gopher junior put back a Julian Welch missed 3-pointer in a way only Rodney Williams can in Minnesota’s 78-68 defeat against No. 6 Ohio State. The left-handed rebound-throwdown came in the final minute with Ohio State up 11 points, so it’s very possible Williams caught the Buckeyes thinking about everything but boxing out on a late trey.
Is there a more electric player in the Big Ten than Minnesota’s Rodney Williams? Of course not. The 6-7, 200-pound junior forward from Minneapolis is a human highlight film, seemingly executing one jaw-dropping, make-your-heart pound dunk every game. Like, for instance, the 360-degree one in this post.
“Chip Armelin is suddenly Steve Nash.” That’s what our resident Big Ten Geeks (@bigtengeeks) tweeted Saturday night following the Minnesota guard’s fancy pass to set up a transition bucket against Illinois. The pass was worthy of the high praise, too. Not only did Armelin fake a behind-the-back pass, he threw the ball right through D.J. Richardson’s arms, hitting Oto Osenieks for an easy bucket. Speaking of the Gophers, Rodney Williams had another huge dunk Saturday, much to the delight of BTN announcer Tom Hart. Watch Armelin’s pass now and Williams’ dunk in this post.
Minnesota’s Rodney Williams loves to show off his athleticism, and for good reason. The junior can jump out of the gym and is blessed with some of the best God-given abilities in the Big Ten. During Sunday afternoon’s game against Northwestern at The Barn, Williams displayed those skills on a few occasions, including a quick, powerful slam and an acrobatic and-one. Watch the latter now and the former in this post.
The third episode of “The Journey: Big Ten Basketball 2012″ airs in its regular spot on TV on Sunday night at 8 p.m. ET but it will debut Saturday night too immediately after the 8 p.m. ET men’s basketball game between Ohio State and Nebraska.
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.
Give Rodney Williams an inch anywhere near the rim, and he’ll make you look silly. The Minnesota junior has springs in his shoes, something Iowa witnessed in the second half of Wednesday night’s game at Williams Arena. On this particular play, Williams turned a Julian Welch missed 3-pointer into a gem of a highlight. The Hawkeyes forgot to account for Williams on the glass, somehow, and he made them pay with a powerful putback of the errant shot. And Williams hung on the rim for style — and to avoid landing on Zach McCabe, we suppose. Watch the play now.
And they’re off! Conference play began last night, and we’ve already been treated to a close game and a Wisconsin blowout–two things we’ll probably see plenty of over the next two-and-a-half months. Let’s get to the details.