Big Ten Round up

Big Ten Roundup

By Cole Henke

Assistant Sports Editor

Illinois

Head Coach: John Groce

Record: 9-9, 1-4 Big Ten

Analysis: The Illini have been plagued by injuries all season, playing most of their games this season with only two of their five projected starters. Flashes of high level play have kept Illini fans interested, but flashes are all the team has been able to produce.

Indiana

Head coach: Tom Crean

Record: 15-3, 5-0 Big Ten

Analysis: Indiana showed some signs of inconsistency on the defensive end early in the season, picking up losses to Wake Forest and UNLV at the Maui Invitational, as well as a loss against Duke at Cameron Indoor. Since then, Indiana has tightened it up on the defensive end, and continuing to play strong offensively behind point guard Yogi Ferrell.

Iowa

Head Coach: Fran McCaffery

Record: 14-3, 5-0 Big Ten

Analysis: Much like their football team, Iowa basketball has burst onto the Big Ten scene this year, picking up a season sweep against top 5 ranked Michigan St., and also beating top Big Ten teams Purdue and Michigan. Iowa is ranked No. 9 after beating Michigan.

Maryland

Head Coach: Mark Turgeon

Record: 16-2, 5-1 Big Ten

Analysis: Melo Trimble showed he was a top player in the Big Ten last year when he carried the Terrapins to the NCAA tournament. This year he has been even better, and with the addition of freshman forward Diamond Stone and a balanced scoring attack, the Terrapins have held a top-10 ranking all season.

Michigan

Head Coach: John Beilein

Record: 13-5, 3-2 Big Ten

Analysis: Michigan has fallen victim to their own strength of schedule so far this season. Four of the Wolverines’ five losses, including both of their Big Ten losses, have come against ranked teams. The Wolverines are led by senior Caris LeVert.

Michigan St.

Head Coach: Tom Izzo

Record: 16-3, 3-3 Big Ten

Analysis: Michigan State worked its way up to the No. 1 ranking early in the season, but after its best player and potential Player of the Year winner Denzel Valentine got injured, the Spartans have not been the same team. Back-to-back losses to conference foes Iowa and Wisconsin dropped the Spartans out of the top 10.

Minnesota

Head Coach: Richard Pitino

Record: 6-12, 0-6 Big Ten

Analysis: It has definitely been a rough season for the Golden Gophers. They were unable to pick up any momentum in the non-conference season, going 6-6, and haven’t been able to win a game since. The Golden Gophers are looking at missing the NCAA Tournament and the NIT for the second year in a row.

Nebraska:

Head Coach: Tim Miles

Record: 11-8, 3-3 Big Ten

Analysis: Nebraska has been the definition of middle-of-the-pack in the Big Ten this season. The Cornhuskers do not have any bad losses, but do not have any marquee wins either. Junior guard Andrew White III leads the team with 17.5 ppg.

Northwestern

Head Coach: Chris Collins

Record: 15-4, 3-3 Big Ten

Analysis: This is one of the strongest teams the Wildcats have ever had, and early in the season it seemed almost certain that this would be the first Northwestern team to ever make the NCAA Tournament. The Wildcats have been road warriors this year, going 4-0 on the road.

Ohio State

Head Coach: Thad Matta

Record: 12-7, 4-2 Big Ten

Analysis: Ohio State has been the definition of inconsistent this season. The Buckeyes picked up a big win against Kentucky early in the season, but since then, they’ve been run out of the gym by both Indiana and Maryland, leaving them in the middle of the pack in the Big Ten.

Penn State

Head Coach: Pat Chambers

Record: 11-8, 2-4 Big Ten

Analysis: The Nittany Lions have struggled when it comes to Big Ten play in past seasons, and this one has been no different. So far this season, the Nittany Lions’ biggest win was against Northwestern in Evanston.

Purdue

Head Coach: Matt Painter

Record: 16-3, 4-2 Big Ten

Analysis: Purdue’s big men have been carrying the team to victory all season. Senior A.J. Hammons and sophomore Isaac Hass — with help from freshman Caleb Swanigan — form the most formidable front court the Big Ten has to offer, and Purdue’s slow pace and post game has been working well so far.

Rutgers

Head Coach: Eddie Jordan

Record: 6-13, 0-6 Big Ten

Analysis: Rutgers still has not adjusted to life in the Big Ten. Life has been rough for the Scarlet Knights — they sit in last place in the Big Ten, the same place they finished last year.

Wisconsin

Head Coach: Greg Gard (Interim)

Record: 10-9, 2-4 Big Ten

Analysis: Everybody expected a drop off for Wisconsin following its National Championship appearance last year. What wasn’t expected were losses to both Western Illinois and Milwaukee at home, and head coach Bo Ryan retiring right before right before Big Ten play. The Badgers have kept fighting, though, almost upsetting Maryland if not for Melo Trimble’s buzzer-beater heroics.