Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports
It’s time to begin Week Three of the Big Ten season. Michigan State, Wisconsin and Michigan are unbeaten in conference play, while Iowa is coming on. And you know Ohio State will dig in after suffering back-to-back losses. There are no Titanic clashes but some that will go a long way toward shaping this Big Ten race.
Iowa jumped six spots in the latest AP Poll, from No. 20 to No. 14, following its upset win Sunday at then-No. 3 Ohio State. The victory marked Iowa’s first over a top 5 opponent since 2001, and it kept it right in the thick of the Big Ten title race. Meanwhile, Wisconsin and Michigan State both moved up a spot, to No. 3 and No. 4, respectively, as a result of Ohio State’s two-loss week. The Buckeyes dropped to No. 11.
Well, if you had any doubt if Iowa was legit, yesterday’s win at No. 3 Ohio State should quell that notion. This was the signature victory for the Hawkeyes under Fran McCaffery, who was coming off a one-game suspension for his double-technical/ejection last Sunday at Wisconsin. What a way to announce your return.
The Big Ten office announced its latest Big Ten Players of the Week, and Iowa’s Devyn Marble (Player of the Week) and Indiana’s Noah Vonleh (Freshman of the Week) are the latest recipients. See what each players did this past week to earn the honor in this post.
We are in the second week of January, which means that the college basketball season is officially at the midway point. Through two months, Wisconsin is the only Big Ten team without a loss this season, sitting at a perfect 16-0. The Badgers are joined by Michigan State and Michigan as the only three teams without a conference loss.
Sam Dekker is one of the Big Ten’s top players. Did you know he also really likes to rap? On Sunday night’s premiere of “The Journey: Big Ten Basketball 2014,” Nigel Hayes told us this about his star teammate: “I really believe he’d rather be Eminem than LeBron James, if he could pick.” Watch one of our show’s segments on Dekker in this post.