Big Ten basketball power rankings


Austin Yattoni

Illinois’ Jalen Coleman-Lands (5) drives to the basket during the game against North Carolina State at State Farm Center on Nov. 29. The Illini won 88-74.

By The Daily Illini sports staff

Editor’s note: Every week, The Daily Illini sports staff ranks the basketball teams in the Big Ten, 1-14, and compiles the lists into its own Big Ten power rankings.

  1. Indiana: Indiana can now put North Carolina on its list of key wins come March. The Tar Heels were overmatched by Indiana’s starting five — all of whom finished the game in double figures. The Hoosiers then beat SIU-Edwardsville to go to 6-1 on the season.

  2. Wisconsin: Following a tough loss to North Carolina, the Badgers have won three straight, including a blowout against No. 25 Syracuse. Bronson Koenig has been great all season at the guard spot and is averaging 15 points per game.

  3. Purdue: The Boilermakers have dropped two games in the top-25 teams this season and have had a little trouble with their other competition. The team needs more consistent play from 7-foot-2 Isaac Haas. The big man is averaging just under 15 points per game but averaging just five rebounds with it.

  4. Maryland: Maryland has rolled this season aside from its lone loss to unranked Pittsburgh. Star point guard Melo Trimble has continued to surpass expectations and is currently averaging nearly 20 points per game.

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  5. Ohio State: The Buckeyes went on the road to take on a challenging Virginia squad and lost by two points. Ohio State has handled the rest of its competition this year, boasting a 7-1 record. The Buckeyes will have to stay focused and not look ahead to a mid-December matchup with No. 11 UCLA.

  6. Michigan: The Wolverines are off to a strong start and have dropped just two games so far with one of them being to No. 20 South Carolina. Though they have been good, they have a tough week ahead with a home game against Texas before heading out to California to play No. 11 UCLA.

  7. Illinois: After losing three straight games — to two top-25 teams — the Illini have picked up two big wins against NC State and VCU. The team that looked to be in an early season downfall has bounced back strong and picked up a couple of statement victories.

  8. Northwestern: The Wildcats have been surprisingly good this season with only two losses coming against No. 18 Butler and Notre Dame. Besides their losses, they have picked up big wins against Wake Forest and Texas.

  9. Michigan State: Sparty has disappointed thus far in the season but after a narrow victory over Oral Roberts, they have brought their record back above .500. The team still has loads of potential, but haven’t put it together yet this season.

  10. Minnesota: The Golden Gophers have had little trouble with their non-conference schedule so far. The team dropped its only game of the season last week against a top-25 Florida State squad.

  11. Rutgers: Rutgers has been solid in all of its games so far and has gone 7-1 in its first eight games. However, its one loss came against its only real competition so the Scarlet Knights are still very unproven.

  12. Penn State: Penn State has been very up and down so far this season. After dropping a game against Albany, the Nittany Lions picked up two games before losing a close game against then No. 1 Duke. They followed that up with a 24 point loss to No. 24 Cincinnati but have yet to lose since.

  13. Nebraska: The Cornhuskers dropped a close one in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge against Clemson. Nebraska has defeated the teams it is supposed to beat this year but will have to add multiple key wins to have a chance at the Big Dance.

  14. Iowa: The Hawkeyes are having one of the worst starts imaginable this season. They have lost to four unranked teams including Omaha and Memphis. The Iowa defense has been atrocious, giving up 98 points and 100 points to Omaha and Memphis, respectively.

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