Many are picking the No. 11 seed Gophers to knock off No. 6 UCLA in the first round of their South Region clash. Yes, Minnesota is in a funk, losing three in a row and seven of 10. But this still is a talented, athletic and physical team that’s capable of big things with players like Andre Hollins, Austin Hollins, Rodney Williams and Trevor Mbakwe, among others.
Bracket makers didn’t do Michigan State any favors, putting it in the Midwest Region—which most experts feel is the toughest with No. 1 overall seed Louisville sitting atop it. That said, the Spartans get to play the first weekend in Auburn Hills, Mich., and if they advance to the second weekend, they play in Indianapolis.
Michigan State’s Keith Appling brought down the United Center with his one-handed posterizing dunk over Iowa’s Melsahn Basabe in the Big Ten tournament. As impressive as the dunk was, it wasn’t the only one that delighted during the four-day event. Watch the Big Ten tourney dunks in this video.
Bill O’Brien receives much of the credit for Penn State’s surprising 2012 football season, and rightfully so. But Penn State strength and condition coach Craig Fitzgerald played a role, as well. In his first year with the program, Fitzgerald, who previously worked at South Carolina, helped modernize Penn State’s weight room and workout regimen. Watch Howard Griffith’s interview with Fitzgerald now.
Six Big Ten women’s basketball teams earned invites to the NCAA tourney, it was announced Monday night. Big Ten regular-season champ Penn State leads the way, with a No. 3 seed, while Iowa (No. 9), Michigan (No. 8), Michigan State (No. 5), Nebraska (No. 6) and Big Ten tourney champ Purdue (No. 4) round out the the Big Ten contingent.
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In a web-only “Football Report” segment, BTN analysts Gerry DiNardo, Howard Griffith and Derek Rackley discussed Nebraska’s 2013 season outlook. It’s early, no doubt, but DiNardo was recently in Lincoln, Neb., and here’s what he had to say: “I saw a really talented and experienced offense. I think it’s all going to come down to Taylor Martinez.” More specifically, whether the Huskers decide to make him a pass-first or run-first quarterback. Watch the segment now.