Tom Dienhart, Senior Writer, April 18, 2013

Are you sitting down? Good. Because, this may shock you: ESPN?s Joe Lunardi already has an NCAA bracket projection ? for 2014! The Big Ten is well represented with seven teams.

Here's how they're projected right now. But, you know, this could change.

  • Michigan State is a No. 1 seed in the South playing the winner of Mount St. Mary?s/Elon.
  • Michigan is a No. 2 in the West playing No. 15 Charleston.
  • Ohio State is a No. 2 in the East playing No. 15 Arkansas State.
  • Indiana is a No. 4 in the East playing No. 13 Belmont.
  • Wisconsin is a No. 5 in the Midwest playing No. 12 Southern Miss.
  • Iowa is a No. 7 in the South playing No. 10 Saint Louis.
  • Illinois is a No. 11 in the Midwest playing Baylor.

Putting the Fighting Illini in the field over Purdue is a mistake. Illinois is loaded with questions, while the Boilermakers return all of their key players from a hungry team. Illinois loses Brandon Paul, D.J. Richardson, Tyler Griffey and Sam McLaurin. Purdue welcomes back Terone Johnson, Ronnie Johnson, A.J. Hammons and Rapheal Davis.

And Iowa seems to be seeded too low. The Hawkeyes could be a top-three Big Ten team with a roster teeming with talent like Roy Devyn Marble, Aaron White, Mike Gesell, Melsahn Basabe, Adam Woodbury, Anthony Clemmons, Zach McCabe and Wisconsin transfer Jarrod Uthoff.

Otherwise, I see no glaring issues with where the other Big Ten teams are seeded for now. But, possible defections at Michigan State (Adreain Payne and Gary Harris) and Michigan (Mitch McGary and Glenn Robinson III) would definitely drop those schools in the seedings.


About Tom Dienhart senior writer Tom Dienhart is a veteran sports journalist who covers Big Ten football and men's basketball for and BTN TV. Find him on Twitter and Facebook, read all of his work at, and subscribe to his posts via RSS. Also, send questions to his weekly mailbag using the form below and read all of his previous answers in his reader mailbag section.

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