Jess Settles, BTN men's basketball analyst, December 23, 2015

There's a new No. 1 atop my latest Big Ten Player Rankings, and it's a familiar name.

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Maryland point guard Melo Trimble, my preseason No. 1 player, returns to the top spot in the wake of Michigan State star Denzel Valentine's injury.

See my full latest list below.

1. Melo Trimble, Maryland. With Denzel Valentine sidelined, the Big Ten's best point guard takes over the top spot. But don't worry, Michigan State fans, Valentine didn't fall very far.
Last week: 2

2. Denzel Valentine, Michigan State. Valentine is expected to miss 2-3 weeks after undergoing minor knee surgery. The absence drops the early Big Ten Player of the Year favorite just one spot.
Last week: 1

3. Jarrod Uthoff, Iowa. As impressive as Uthoff has been on offense (18.3 ppg), he's had three games with five blocks or more, helping him sit atop the conference's block leaderboard (2.9). This is currently the best defender in the conference.
Last week: 3

4. A.J. Hammons, Purdue. Hammons destroyed Vanderbilt's front line, nearly registering the rare points-rebounds-blocks triple-double (21/10/7), and continues to dominate at both ends of the court.
Last week: 4

5. Caris LeVert, Michigan. With Derrick Walton Jr. back in action, look for LeVert to take his game to an even higher level. Since the former's return, in fact, both players have recorded triple-doubles.
Last week: 5

6. Nigel Hayes, Wisconsin. With Bo Ryan retired, look for new coach Greg Gard to run a more controlled offense and post Hayes up more.
Last week: 6

7. Caleb Swanigan, Purdue. Look at Swanigan's line against Butler: 71 percent (10-14), 25 points, 11 rebounds and two steals. Are there any doubters left?
Last week: 10

8. Malcolm Hill, Illinois. The reigning Big Ten player of the week was brilliant against South Dakota, scoring 34 points, grabbing 11 rebounds, dishing out five assists and swatting 3 shots.
Last week: NR

9. Yogi Ferrell, Indiana. In Indiana's critical win against Notre Dame in the Crossroads Classic, Ferrell made clutch plays down the stretch and locked down Irish star Demetrius Jackson.
Last week: 8

10. Robert Carter Jr., Maryland. The Georgia Tech transfer has slowed down offensively, averaging 9.3 points the last three games after scoring in double digits the first eight times out, but he remains efficient (11-of-19 from the field).
Last week: 7