The Big Ten Men’s Basketball Tournament quarterfinal matchup between Ohio State and Purdue on Friday was the highest-rated basketball game in BTN history, according to Nielsen metered market data. The game earned a program average household rating of 3.11 across the network’s eight metered markets,* and was the top cable program in Cleveland, Columbus, Dayton and Indianapolis that day.
What are my colleagues around the Big Ten saying this morning? The Spartans are a sure thing in an unpredictable tourney while the Buckeyes challenge is to move on. The Wolverines look to stick around a while in the NCAA while the Badgers’ bracket is dangerous even with Kentucky nowhere near. And the NCAA committee did Purdue a favor. What was it? Find out in my daily web links post.
Tonight on the Big Ten Pulse, at 7:30 p.m. ET, Rick Pizzo, Derek Rackley and Tim Doyle discuss what they learned about Michigan State from its championship run at the Big Ten tourney. Also, the crew considers what tourney runner-up Ohio State needs to make a deep NCAA run, offers their thoughts on whether a Big Ten team will make the Final Four and ponders if the Spartans or Buckeyes have the easier road to New Orleans.
Much was made about Northwestern’s attempt to make the NCAA tournament for the first time in school history, but this year’s Wildcats team fell just short. BTN’s Tim Doyle caught up with Northwestern coach Bill Carmody to talk about the Wildcats being left out of the field of 68 teams. “I don’t think necessarily that if we had beat Minnesota in the (Big Ten) tournament we would have got in,” Carmody said. “I don’t think that really knocked us out either.” The Wildcats will play in the postseason, however, as it received an NIT berth and plays Akron in the first round Tuesday. A couple other Big Ten teams made the NIT, as well. See who in this post.
After four days of Big Ten basketball in Indianapolis, six Big Ten men’s teams move on to the NCAA tournament. Michigan State lands the No. 1 seed in the West and plays Long Island University (Friday, 9:20 p.m. ET), while Ohio State is the No. 2 seed in East and faces Loyola (Md.) (Thursday, 9:50 p.m.). Wisconsin scored a No. 4 seed in East and plays Montana (Thursday, 2:10 p.m.), and Michigan gets a No. 4 seed and plays Ohio University (Friday, 7:20 p.m.)
With 11 games over four days, there was a lot to watch and digest at the 15th Big Ten tourney in Indianapolis. There were highs and lows as well as good and bad from the first game to the final game.