staff, October 11, 2012

Big Ten basketball is almost here as a handful of teams plan for opening night events traditionally known as "Midnight Madness." Fans can watch six of these events at Big Ten schools live online via the Big Ten Digital Network. The first three happen Friday night: Minnesota's "Gopher All-Star Friday Night" goes live at 8:20 p.m. ET, Purdue's "The Tip-Off Before the Kickoff" goes on at 8:30 p.m., and Michigan State's "Midnight Madness" starts at 10:30 p.m. Go to and click on the "Live Events" tab for the full schedule.

Here's a look at Michigan State's introduction video from the Spartans' event in 2011:

And Michigan State women's coach Suzy Merchant got in on the fun, too. Watch this clip:

At Michigan State, there will be autographs on the Breslin Center concourse with the formal program starting at 10:30 p.m. ET. Both the men's and women's teams will be introduced, and there will be performances by the Spartan Marching Band, Michigan State cheerleaders, Michigan State dance team and Sparty. Read more at

Minnesota's "Gopher All-Star Friday Night? with festivities starting at 8 p.m. The entire evening will have the look of NBA All-Star weekend and feature a two-ball shooting competition, a three-point shooting competition, a dunk contest and a scrimmage. Read more at

Purdue's "Tip-Off Kickoff" is part of Purdue's football homecoming weekend. The basketball portion of the event at Mackey Arena starts around 9:15 p.m. ET and includes introductions of both men's and women's basketball teams, a performance by the student-athletes from both teams, shooting and slam dunk competitions and remarks by head coaches Matt Painter and Sharon Versyp. Read more at

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Next week, the Big Ten Digital Network will stream three more events live:

Iowa's "Black & Gold Blowout" is Friday, Oct. 19 at 9 p.m.. Fans who arrive early can register to win men's basketball season tickets, women's basketball season tickets, tour of Carver-Hawkeye Arena, a Fran McCaffery autographed basketball, a Lisa Bluder autographed basketball, a chance to sit on team bench during a men's or women's basketball scrimmage, and a chance to attend to a closed-weekend practice for men's or women's basketball. Read more about it at

Indiana's "Hoosier Hysteria" is Saturday, Oct. 20 at 7 p.m.. First-year women's coach Curt Miller will get his first opportunity to address Hoosier Nation in Assembly Hall and fifth-year men's coach Tom Crean brings in a squad which is ranked No. 1 by several organizations and is coming off a Sweet Sixteen appearance last year. Read more about it

Here's a look at the full Hoosiers scrimmage from Indiana's 2011 event:

Penn State's "Hoops Madness" is Thursday, Oct. 25 at 7:30 p.m.. Event include music and highlight videos as fans can participate in contests and enjoy the Pride of Lions Pep Band, Lionettes dance team, Penn State Cheerleaders and the Nittany Lion all leading up to introductions and dance performances by both teams and a special performance from Big Sean.  Read more about it at

The Big Ten Digital Network combines streaming audio and video content from all 12 member institutions with up to 500 additional games streamed exclusively from the Big Ten Network to offer the most online video coverage of Big Ten athletics anywhere in the world. Please note this product does not include live football games.To learn more about the Big Ten Digital Network and to subscribe to the plan, go to our Big Ten Digital Network site.