Howe: Big Ten Hoops Power Rankings 3-11
IOWA CITY, Iowa – Now the fun really begins. After a wild Big Ten regular season, we head to the conference tournament in Chicago this week.
Michigan State and Purdue share the regular-season title with Michigan falling a game short. The Spartans are the tournament’s top seed by virtue of going 3-1 against the Wolverines and Boilermakers.
Wisconsin joins the top three in receiving a double bye in the tournament. That bodes well for that foursome considering the eventual champion as come from that group since the field went to 14 teams.
Here’s how I see the conference stacking up heading into the tournament. It’s my final Big Ten Power rankings (will update with national rankings when they are released later on Monday):
1. Michigan State (25-6, 16-4, No. 9 AP, No. 11 Coaches) – The Spartans finished the season with wins against Nebraska and rival Michigan last week. It earned them a share of the regular-season title after winning it outright a year ago.
Michigan State heads to Chicago at 8th in the NET, and 4th in Ken Pom and 5th in Sagarin.
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2. Purdue (23-8, 16-4, No. 11 AP, No. 9 Coaches) – The Boilermakers missed out on a chance for their second outright title in three seasons by being upset at Minnesota last week. They rebounded for a win at Northwestern Saturday to earn a share of the championship.
Purdue begins the week 11th in the NET, and 10th in Ken Pom and Sagarin.
3. Michigan (26-5 overall, 15-5 Big Ten, No. 7, No. 7) – The Wolverines fell at Michigan State Saturday night, losing for the second time this season to their in-state rival. Losses at Penn State and Iowa kept them from the title, however.
Michigan starts the week 10th in the NET, 6th in Ken Pom and 9th in Sagarin.
4. Wisconsin (22-9, 14-6, No. 21, No. 21) – The Badgers hung onto fourth place with a pair of wins last week. They drubbed rival Iowa on senior day and then won at Ohio State in overtime.
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Wisconsin sits at 15th in NET, 12th in Ken Pom and 14th in Sagarin.
5. Maryland (22-9, 13-7, No. 24, No. 24) – The young Terps finished off their regular season with a home win against Minnesota in their lone game last week.
Maryland checks in at 26th in the NET, 18th in Ken Pom and 21st in Sagarin.
6. Iowa (21-10, 10-10, NR, NR) – The Hawkeyes’ skid reached four games with Sunday’s loss at Nebraska. They were blown out at Wisconsin earlier in the week.
Iowa is 42nd in the NET, 41st in Ken Pom, and 45th in Sagarin.
7. Minnesota (19-12, 9-11, NR, NR) – The Golden Gophers recorded a big win Tuesday, knocking off Purdue at home. They then fell at Maryland on Friday.
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Minnesota is 56th in the NET, 46th in Ken Pom and 47th in Sagarin.
8. Indiana (17-14, 8-12, NR, NR) – The Hoosiers won by 18 at Illinois and then took care of business against Rutgers at home on Sunday. They’ve won four in a row, the longest current streak in the conference.
Indiana is 51st in NET, 42nd in Ken Pom and 32nd in Sagarin.
9. Ohio State (18-13, 8-12, NR, NR) – The Buckeyes continued their slide without suspended center Kaleb Wesson. They were blown out at last-place Northwestern, a team that had lost 10 in a row, then wrapped up the regular season with a home loss to Wisconsin.
Ohio State is 55th in Net, 44th in Ken Pom and 46th in Sagarin.
10. Penn State (14-17, 7-13, NR, NR) – The Nittany Lions continued their late-season push with wins at Rutgers and at home versus Illinois. They’re 49th in NET, 39th in Ken Pom and 43rd in Sagarin.
11. Illinois (11-20, 7-13, NR, NR) – The Illini was blown out at home by Indiana before falling at Penn State on Sunday.They’re 105th in NET, 78th in Ken Pom and 82nd in Sagarin.
12. Rutgers (14-16, 7-13, NR, NR) – The young Knights dropped a pair of games last week, losing at home to Penn State and at Indiana. They are 99th in NET, 77th in Ken Pom and 79th in Sagarin.
13. Nebraska (16-15, 6-14, NR, NR) – The Huskers ended a four-game losing streak with a win against Iowa on Sunday. They were blown out at Michigan State earlier in the week. They’re 52nd in NET, 45th in Ken Pom and 39th in Sagarin.
14. Northwestern (13-18, 4-16, NR, NR) – The Wildcats ended a 10-game losing streak with a home win against Ohio State before falling to Purdue. They’re 87th in NET, and 70th in Ken Pom, and 74th in Sagarin.
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