Big Ten title: Who ya got?

  • 02/28/2008 8:21 am in

madbo.jpgIt’s crunch time in the race for the Big Ten regular season title and three teams have separated themselves from the pack. Based on difficulty of schedule, Bo Ryan and Wisconsin appear to be the favorite. Purdue has a road game at Ohio State, who is hungry for a marquee win to boost their NCAA resume and Indiana plays at Michigan State.

Here’s a list of the remaining games for each of the three contenders:

— Wisconsin: Michigan State (home), Penn State (home), Northwestern (away)
— Indiana: Michigan State (away), Minnesota (home), Penn State (away)
— Purdue
: Northwestern (home), Ohio State (away), Michigan (away)

    We’ll know a lot more about where the race is heading tonight when Michigan State plays at the Kohl Center. If the Badgers win, they’re almost a sure bet to finish 16-2. However, if Purdue wins out, they would also be 16-2 and would own a tiebreaker (for Big Ten Tournament seeding purposes) over Wisconsin because the Boilermakers beat them twice. Don’t count the Hoosiers out just yet, but given their success (or lack thereof) at the Breslin Center, they seem to be the least likely of the three teams to win the league.

    So given the remaining schedules, who is your pick to win the Big Ten regular season title?

    Filed to:

    • As much as it pains me to say this, just based on the schedule, it has to be Purdue. I don't see IU going into Breslin this weekend and getting a win. Michigan State is a very different time on that floor than the team IU beat up on two weeks ago.

    • Willis

      I think each team will lose a game, so we all share the title, which would leave us with a 3 seed in the tourney. I think we may have some trouble on the road at MSU, I think UW is going to lose tonight, and I'm hoping PU stumbles in one of their games (most likely OSU). I'm just happy that the Hoosiers are in the discussion this year. I love this team.

    • So what are the possible scenarios? If IU & PU tie, IU wins? If PU and WISC tie, PU wins. If IU and WISC tie, co-champions? If all three tie, who wins?

    • Chris P.

      I believe it all comes down to tonight for IU. If UW wins we will finish no better than a two way tie for 2nd with purdue. I think IU loses to MSU sunday and PU loses Tuesday at OSU but MSU has to beat UW at UW tonight for us to get a share of the big ten title.

    • DC Hoosier

      If by wins, you mean gets the #1 seed in the Big Ten Tournament, then if IU and PU tie, IU is #1; if PU and Wisc tie, PU is #1; if IU and Wisc tie, Wisc is #1; and if all three tie PU is #1, Wisc is #2, and IU is #3. Tie breakers are based on head to head if 2 teams tie, or overall record against the other 2 teams if all 3 tie (PU would be 2-1, Wisc 2-2, and IU 1-2 in that case).

      Teams that tie in overall record share the Big Ten title, so the tie breakers are only important for the Big Ten Tournament.

    • DC_Hoosier

      Sadly, I think Purdue and Wisconsin are both going to win out, while the Hoosiers will fall at Michigan St. If I remember correctly, the last time IU won at MSU Eric Anderson and Cal Cheaney still played for the Hoosiers.

      And as much as I would like OSU to take out the Boilers, I don't think OSU is that good. Purdue, to me, puts a consistent game out there – they won't take out a team that is better than them and playing well, but they won't lose to teams they shouldn't either.

      Hopefully, I'm just being the typical pessimistic Hoosier fan, though. I'll certainly be pulling hard to MSU to win tonight but exhaust themselves in the process. Maybe a double overtime thriller?

    • ronb

      Best shot at the title has to be Wisconsin,then IU and then PU. Don't forget that MST and OSTU need wins. MST needs at least one victory over IU or Wisc. to help their NCAA seed.
      OSTU must beat PU at home to even get in the NIT and maybe if they do well in the big ten
      tourney they might get a NCAA bid. Their problem is no wins over any of the top 4 Big Ten
      teams. If IU wins at MST they will at least get a share of the title. Who knows maybe they all
      have 3 losses which was the thought of the BT coaches at the start of BT play.

    • JamesHardy

      Lets Go Spar-Tans *clap* CLAP *clap clap clap* Well, for at least one day! C'mon Hoosier Nation…HAVE SOME FREAKIN FAITH!!! This is the 7th post in this thread and I'm the first one who thinks we're going to head north and come home with a victory?!?! Please tell me you're just using reverse psychology!

    • IU4LIFE

      i have a lot of faith as a hoosier fan that we can go up there and get a win. BUT we are not only going to MSU, we are going to MSU on their senior night if im not mistaken…..lets hope drew doesnt go off against us in his last game at home as a Spartan.

    • seeing how Michigan State has performed on the road this season, i'll give them about a 1 in 150 chance of winning at the Kohl Center tonight. in other words, Wisconsin is definitely winning out. as for Purdue, i doubt they lose in Columbus to Ohio State. the Buckeyes are far more likely to beat MSU for their marquee win instead. with the way Purdue defends, OSU will be lucky to crack 55 points.

      i know the Breslin Center has been a disaster-area for IU for many years now, but i think this game is a lot more winnable than it has been in past seasons. MSU is vastly overrated and even though they have wins over BYU and Texas in December, as well as over Purdue in the first week of the Big Ten season, they haven't beaten anybody in almost two months.

      id give IU a 40% chance of winning in Lansing (therefore winning out), Purdue a 75% chance of winning out and Wisconsin a 95% chance of winning out – translation: i see it like you guys. Wisconsin will win the Big Ten.

    • HoosierSmitty

      1. Wisconsin 16-2
      2. Indiana 15-3
      T. Purdue 15-3
      4. Michigan State 13-5 ?

      I see us getting the No. 2 seed. Both IU and Purdue will find a way to lose a game. I can't fathom finishing behind Purdue.

    • HoosierSmitty

      There is a huge difference between being realistic and negative thinking.

      Based on the schedules, Wisconsin should win out…Purdue SHOULD lose at Ohio State (OSU is a good team at home), and Indiana NEVER wins at the Breslin Center, so we should lose at MSU.

      I hate to “What if” the season…but Butch's freaking banked in 3 haunts us for years to come….Yes I know EJ got lucky with the 3 against Illinois, but Illinois isn't in the hunt for a title. I would rather give EJ's shot back and take Butch's away as well. We'd have the same record, but Wisconsin would have one more loss and we'd be in much better shape for a title.

    • JamesHardy

      Didn't “REALITY” tell us that there was NO WAY the Giants could be the Pats in the Super Bowl? Didn't “REALITY” tell us there is no way I-AA Appalachian St. beats #5 Michigan @ the Big House? Didn't “REALITY” tell us there's no way Pitt beats West Virginia to keep WVU out of the Nat'l Title game?
      I'm just saying that ANYTHING is possible and I thought I'd see alot more faith and support on this sight. I've got faith that Izzo will have the Sparties ready to rock at the Kohl Center tonight…I've got faith that Michigan…YES MICHIGAN…will play all out vs. Purdue while the PU freshmen will be getting tight thinking about the BIG 10 title instead of the game at hand…and I have faith that DD will have our Hoosiers ready to set wreck to the Breslin Center on Sunday. If not…oh well, we're still going to the big 10 tourney as a 3 seed at worst…and the NCAA's as a 4 seed at worst.

    • JamesHardy

      drew went off in assembly hall…and MSU still lost. Let Drew get his and keep everyone else in check…cuz when Neitzel's scoring, that means he isnt setting up his teammates to be successful….

    • “I've got faith that Michigan…YES MICHIGAN…will play all out vs. Purdue while the PU freshmen will be getting tight thinking about the BIG 10 title instead of the game
      at hand”

      Tell me, is that the same Michigan team that gave Northwestern their lone Big Ten win at home? You're right that “ANYTHING” is possible, but I have a better chance of being the next guy to knock-up Jessica Alba than Michigan has of beating Purdue.

    • T

      Michigan State is the total wild card here. I was shocked that they lost to Penn State and Iowa…at the start of the year I thought they had the most talent in the conference.

      They could lose by 40 to Wisconsin or upset them on the road. They could choke on senior night to IU or dominate. I really have no idea what to expect out of those guys.

      Sadly, I think that puts Purdue in the best position, because they don't have to play those crazy Spartans at all. They get to play ugly ass Kosta Kofus and Ohio State and then some jag bag bottom feeders in the big ten.

      However, I think OSU beats Purdue (As good as they've been, I can't believe a loaded freshman team will only have two conference losses.)

      But I have a sinking feeling that Wisconsin will once again emerge Big Ten champions.

    • HoosierSmitty

      Again, being realistic doesn't mean that I don't have hope, or believe in my team. It's just a simple take on the numbers. The numbers say Wisconsin or Purdue have the easiest…not Indiana. It's just a fact.

      Am I going to cheer for the Spartans like mad tonight? Of course I will. Do I think IU has a great shot to win at Michigan State, yes I think they do have a great shot. Is it likely to happen, nope. Will that stop me from supporting me team? Of course not. Anything is certainly possible, but I'm not going to ignore the facts before me.

    • Tom

      Wisconsin got gifts from the refs against both IU and OSU recently. Wisconsin wins out. Best we can do is finish tied with them and get a second seed in tournament. Purdue loses at least one more unless refs let them keep fouling like against Minnesota.

    • JamesHardy

      Smitty, please let me clarify that I'm not calling into question ANYONE'S allegiance to IU. I was just SHOCKED at the lack of people who thought IU had a chance. Is it a slim chance…YES. But its a chance nonetheless. Please don't get mad and think I'm calling your “fanhood” into question. You're actually one of the few people on this board that I agree with most of the time. You almost always justify your points clearly which is refreshing in this day of bloggers who just spew without cause. GO HOOSIERS!

    • Ricky

      OSU should have beaten Wisconsin over the weekend, but they just could not make any shots down the stretch (actually, kind of like what just happened on tuesday). OSU will be playing for their tournament lives against Purdue, so that game is going to be tight. Also, if OSU actually shoots the ball well, especially if Diebler shoots the ball well, they can compete with anyone. See North Carolina and Tennessee. Good shooting games against way better teams, so they lost tight games.

      Also, MSU is not as bad on the road as everyone says they are. They played some tough road games during the non-conference part of the season and did well. they are just not playing their best basketball right now. that can all change in one game though

      for IU, i'd be happy for even just a share of the big ten title. top of the big ten is though this year, and its been too long since IU has been here

    • Sherron Wilkerson

      Not true, last night during the Purdue game they they showed what the seeding would look like if we all tie, Wisky was #1, we were the deuce and PU was the 3

    • MikeyD

      You are correct sir.

    • Tim in DC

      IU is gonna win it…enough said.

    • ALH_00

      I said in a previous thread that IU is better than MSU, but the best team doesn't always win. I think the extra rest will help IU and lack of rest coming off a BIG game will hurt MSU. But it is still in their house and IU has some distractions. If IU wins, it would be the biggest victory of the season (until the Big 10 championship game, of course).

    • Tom Coverdale IU Hero

      Wisconsin will win it outright IU cant win at Michigane State and Wisconsin has MSU at home which they will probably win but if they dont IU can win at MSU because they will still be riding that high from winnin at wisconsin and then if it wasnt for the refs not calling travel on travon hughes we would be talkin about IU getting a nuber one seed

    • HoosierSmitty

      Agreed…I thought we'd lose if Neitzel went nuts…but we still pulled out the W at Assembly Hall.

      We can't let him roam free, but no need to freak out if he plays well.

    • DC_Hoosier

      Not sure what they showed during the Purdue game last night, but if it was what you said, they are wrong.

      Here is the relevant part of the tie breaker procedure from the Big Ten website:


      1. Results of head-to-head competition during the regular season.

      A. When comparing records against a single team or a group of teams, the higher winning percentage shall prevail, even if the number of games played against the team or group are unequal (i.e., 2-0 is better than 3-1); in the case of tied percentages vs. the team or group of 1.000 or .000 the following shall apply: 2-0 is better than 1-0; 0-1 is better than 0-2.
      B. After the top team among the tied teams is determined, the second team is ranked by its record among the original tied teams, not the head-to-head record vs. the remaining team(s).

      And here's Terry Hutchins' discussion from his blog a week ago:

      “And a three-way tie at either 16-2 or 15-3, wouldn't be pleasant for IU either. If that happened, how would the seeds be determined? In a three-way tie, IU would have a 1-2 record against the other two teams, Wisconsin would have a 2-2 record, and Purdue would have a 2-1 record. So if it were a three-way tie, Purdue would get the No. 1 seed, Wisconsin the No. 2 and IU the No. 3. So that's pretty much the way it would all play out.”

    • Let the good players get their points, but shut everyone else down. That's always my philosophy.

    • Nick

      Okay, just to be contrary and show some confidence in our team, I am going to say that IU is going to beat MSU on the road and then it will all depend on what happens to the other two teams. It's not uncommon for a good team to let one go this time of year so I'm gonna go out on a limb and say that MSU beats WISC tonight and OSU beats Purdue on Tuesday and the Hoosiers win their first outright title since RMK was throwing chairs and assaulting Puerto Rican security guards (I just say that because I can't remember IU's last outright title and I didn't feel energetic enough to look it up)!!!

    • Nick

      Ah, good point! Everyone says that we got what we deserved 'cause of EJ's shot at Illinois but I agree. I would rather trade his for Butch's any day! Then we'd be sitting a game ahead of WISC with the tiebreaker advantage based on the records! But that's just the way the ball bounces sometimes . . . go Hoosiers, win out and put the screws to the other two teams! If we beat MSU this weekend, the other guys will choke!!!

    • td

      OSU doesn't have a go to guy, we do and their names are DJ and EJ. That's why we're where we are.

    • Tim


    • ALH_00

      Because they're all afraid of that psycho on the bench…and I say that as a compiment to Bo Ryan.

    • JamesHardy

      I think Wisconsin loses tonight…65-64

      I think Purdue loses @ OSU….76-68

      I think IU wins out…then wins the B10 Tourney…

      they get a 3 seed in the NCAA….

      Lose in the Elite 8 to a HEALTHY UNC team on a Tyler Hansborough half-court shot (ala Plavich for 3) that should have been disallowed because the lil red light around the backboard was on…only the 3 refs working the game had 2 good eyes between them and couldn't agree on a decision, so they allow the shot to count.

      The kicker here is that they do all of this w/out EJ who opts to have wrist surgery to repair his wrist and improve his draft status this year.

    • hoostheman

      This relates more to the picture than the thread, but my friend recently started calling Bo Ryan “Dracula” or simply a vampire. I think this is a phenomenal nickname for that dude. Thoughts? Can we make this stick?

    • HoosierSmitty


      I hope you're right about the Big Ten finish….but obviously not about the EJ thing and Plavich II debacle…

      We will see how it all plays out…

      Go Spartans tonight.

    • HoosierSmitty

      I think he looks like a Badger…quite fittingly …. the way he scowls with that upper lip and bares his teeth….

    • JamesHardy

      I almost feel like we need a Wisconsin vs MSU game thread for tonight….

    • Jay

      I like Ryan, but honestly: doesn't he look like a turtle?

    • kelin

      Did anyone see the ESPN piece with Fran Freschella? on which Frosh should stay or go? I fell asleep….fill me in ?

    • Sam Snead

      iu looses saturday….purdue looses to osu….those bastard badgers take the title….iu wins the ncaa championship

    • ZachH

      He said EJ should go. And everyone that said no in that current poll is a way too Chicken Little/reactionary; EJ's a top 10 pick, even if he didn't play another minute this season.

    • HoosierSmitty

      The question was not WILL HE go to the NBA, but is he ready…

      Based on his athletic ability, range, incredible skill level, and potential, he's “ready” because scouts say he is. That wasn't going to change this year…where he got drafted would change a little, but that was it…

      Based on his shaky play, out of control nature, the number of mistakes he makes, his streak shooting, lack of a midrange game, inability to be a pure PG, too small for a shooting guard…he's NOT READY.

      Will he go? Of course he will. His stock isn't going to get higher by staying another year, and Indiana has a bit of uncertainty surrounding next season to say the least, so that's a given…but the question was “Is he ready?”

      Personally…I think he's ready…to ride the bench and make millions and have a mediocre career unless he goes to a team that actually tries to develop players. If I was in that position…I'd be ready to make a few million myself…can't blame him.

    • Tim

      So i'm watching the UW v MSU game, 'Sconsin fans need to stop wearing our pants. the Badgers don't were candy strip warm-ups, so why do you feel the need to?

      And how disappointing is this season for Michigan State?

    • kelin

      Dak was SOLID on PTI today….very SOLID.

    • JamesHardy

      Looks like I'm 0 for 1….GO BUCKEYES!

    • BrianK

      I don't think he should go to NBA yet but the draft is all about not what they can do now but the prospect of what they might be able to do. it comes down to where he wants to prep for his NBA career riding the bench next year and hoping to hone his skills or playing college ball. I think it would be better placed playing another year or so of college ball where he would get more attention honing his skills and correcting things.

    • BrianK

      I don't think he should go to NBA yet but the draft is all about not what they can do now but the prospect of what they might be able to do. it comes down to where he wants to prep for his NBA career riding the bench next year and hoping to hone his skills or playing college ball. I think it would be better placed playing another year or so of college ball where he would get more attention honing his skills and correcting things.