While after losses to Michigan State and Iowa, Ohio State will fall from the Top-5, but Michigan State and Wisconsin will stay near the top after they didn't falter during the week. Wisconsin only played one game last week, but it was a win that gave them the record for best start to a season in school history. Illinois lost to Northwestern on Sunday night, adding more confusion to the middle of the pack in the Big Ten. With two months still to go in the Big Ten, the action is only going to heat up.
Marquette (10-7, 2-2): LOSS @ Xavier (86-79), WIN v. Seton Hall (67-66):
Much like last week, the results for Marquette were a mixed bag in the second week of play in the new Big East. Marquette traveled down to Cincinnati and allowed 80 points to a team for the first time this season, but also hit a season-high 11 three-pointers against the Musketeers. The Golden Eagles trailed by as many as 12 points in the second half, but were able to tie the game at 60 with just under eight minutes left in the second half. Marquette couldn't take the lead though and weren't able to make up the huge discrepancy at the foul line. Xavier went 32-41 form the charity stripe while Marquette only made 13 trips to the foul line. Devante Gardner led Marquette with 19 points in the losing effort.
Saturday afternoon saw the Golden Eagles return home and squeak out a victory against Seton Hall. Marquette has now won the last seven times that Seton Hall has visited, dating back to 2007. Marquette held a 16-point lead in the second half over the Pirates but Seton Hall was able to close the gap to 65-63 with 23 seconds left. The Golden Eagles got a few free throws to salt away the game before the Pirates hit a three-pointer from half court as time expired to make the score look a little closer than it really was. Todd Mayo paced Marquette with 19 points while Jamil Wilson registered a double-double with 16 points and 11 rebounds. Next up for Marquette will be a road game against Butler on Saturday.
Maryland (10-7, 2-2): LOSS @ Pittsburgh (79-59), LOSS @ Florida State (85-61):
Maryland didn't find the road kind to them last week, suffering a couple 20+ point losses away from College Park. While most of the country was getting ready to watch the BCS National Championship Game, Maryland was getting routed by the Panthers in Pittsburgh on Monday night. The Terrapins were looking for their first 3-0 start in the ACC since 2002, but it wasn't meant to be. Seth Allen led Maryland with 18 points, but that wasn't enough to overcome the 13 turnovers and 35% shooting that the Terps offered up. Leading scorer Dez Wells was only able to score five points in the game, and the Terps weren't able to get much on offense besides the 18 from Allen and 14 points from Evan Smotrycz.
Wells found his scoring on Sunday night against Florida State, putting in 15 points, but it wasn't nearly enough to keep Maryland close. Florida State hit 16 three-pointers in the game, while Maryland only went 3-18 from three-point range. The game wasn't in doubt for very long, with the Seminoles taking a 42-22 lead into halftime. Nick Faust scored 14 points off the bench in the loss. Maryland will return home on Wednesday night as they'll try and break their two-game slide against Notre Dame.
Notre Dame (10-6, 1-2): LOSS v. North Carolina State (77-70), LOSS @ Georgia Tech (74-69):
After winning their first ACC game against Duke, Notre Dame didn't find the second week of life in the Atlantic Coast Conference nearly as fun. Notre Dame fell on Tuesday night to North Carolina State in South Bend on Tuesday night, despite 21 points and a career-high 18 rebounds from Garrick Sherman. The Fighting Irish were able to tie the game at 54 in the second half after being down by as many as nine points, but were never able to wrestle the lead away from the Wolfpack.
In their first ACC road game on Saturday afternoon, the game against Georgia Tech played out a lot like the one against North Carolina State. Notre Dame used a second half run to erase a 15-point deficit and tie the score at 57 in the second half, but didn't quite have the horses to pull out a victory. Garrick Sherman notched another double-double with 13 points and 12 rebounds, but the loss of Jerian Grant to suspension seems to be catching up with the Fighting Irish. Eric Atkins had 20 points in the game against Georgia Tech, and has done his best to fill Grant's shoes, but any team is going to feel the sting of losing their best player. Notre Dame won't have much time to try and rebound, with a game at Maryland on tap for Wednesday before returning home to play Virginia Tech on Sunday.
Purdue (11-5, 1-2): WIN v. Nebraska (70-64):
After hanging tough in their first two Big Ten losses on the season, Purdue was finally able to finish a close game on top to earn their first win of conference play. The Boilermakers got 18 points in only 22 minutes from A.J. Hammons to lead them, while Ronnie Johnson added 14 points to the victory cause. The game was back-and-forth with Purdue holding a 35-32 lead at halftime. Nebraska took a 57-55 lead with just over seven minutes left, but Johnson's bucket just over a minute later gave Purdue the lead for good. Purdue was able to hit their free throws down the stretch to earn the win. Matt Painter's team will hit the road on Wednesday to take on a suddenly struggling Illinois team before hosting Penn State on Saturday in West Lafayette.
Nebraska (8-8, 0-4): LOSS v. Michigan (71-70), LOSS @ Purdue (70-64):
Nebraska dropped a couple close games last week to extended their losing streak to five games, the last four losses being in conference play. The loss to Michigan on Thursday night marked the first loss that Nebraska has suffered in the new Pinnacle Bank Arena. The Cornhuskers had been 8-0 at home this year heading into the game against the Wolverines. Terran Petteway was the leading scorer from Nebraska in the game, scoring 16 points in the contest, 14 of them coming in the second half. The Cornhuskers had the last shot of the game against Michigan but a Pettway drive missed the mark, and Leslee Smith couldn't convert the offensive rebound that fell to him.
Pettway looks to be far and away the best offensive threat that Nebraska has this season, as he scored 19 points in the loss to Purdue on Sunday afternoon. The Cornhuskers didn't allow Purdue to create any separation in the score in the game, and actually held a small lead with just under six minutes to go, but much like the Michigan game, Nebraska couldn't find a victory. Ray Gallegos scored 14 points against Michigan and 10 points against Purdue after only putting in a combined six points in his first two Big Ten games this season. Nebraska will have the whole week off before returning to the court next Monday to welcome Ohio State into their new digs.
#5 Michigan State (15-1, 4-0): WIN v. #3 Ohio State (72-68 OT), WIN v. Minnesota (87-75 OT):
Overtime was the name of the game for the Spartans last week, as Tom Izzo's club needed extra time in both of their wins last week. The Spartans looked to be headed to an easy victory, leading Ohio State by as many as 17 points in the second half before a 20-3 run by the Buckeyes to end regulation sent the game to the extra frame. Keith Appling was just too much with a three-pointer with 29 seconds to go in OT that gave the Spartans the lead for good. Appling finished the game with 20 points, seven rebounds, and six assists. A.J. had a recap of the game after the final whistle blew, while Sam dove even deeper into the Buckeye loss the next day.
The situation against Minnesota was a little different, with Michigan State trailing the Golden Gophers 53-43 with 16 minutes to go before the Spartans uncorked a 15-0 run to take the lead. After it was looking like Adreian Payne wouldn't play against Ohio State after warmups, Payne didn't see the court against Minnesota on Saturday. The Spartans probably shouldn't have needed the extra session, but they couldn't hold on to a five-point lead with 13 seconds left in the second half. After a Malik Smith three-pointer, Gary Harris missed two free throws with 11 seconds to go which allowed DeAndre Mathieu to hit a layup to send the game to overtime. Michigan State took over in overtime though, scoring the first nine points of the extra five minutes, keeping their record in the Big Ten perfect so far this year. Appling was again huge for Michigan State, scoring 24 points, while Gary Harris scored 19 points. The Spartans will hope to not need any extra time this week when they hit the road to face Northwestern on Saturday before visiting Illinois on Saturday.
#20 Iowa (14-3, 3-1): WIN v. Northwestern (93-67), WIN @ #3 Ohio State (84-74):
After losing a tight game to Wisconsin last Sunday, and seeing Fran McCaffery ejected in the loss, the Hawkeyes kept a more even-keel in their two victories last week. Iowa was just fine on Thursday night with assistant coach Kirk Speraw at the helm for the suspended McCaffery, jumping out to a 10-0 lead against Northwestern and never looking back. The Hawkeyes hit the boards hard to gain a 41-28 rebounding edge over Northwestern in the game, and were paced by double-doubles from Aaron White and Melsahn Basabe. White put up 18 points and 10 boards while Basabe matched White's 10 rebounds and added 16 points.
While a win against Northwestern won't due much for their resume come tournament time, a win on the road against Ohio State is a big win for the Hawkeyes. In what was a close game most of the way, the Hawkeyes really turned things on at the end, finishing the game with a 22-9 run to earn the victory. Roy Devyn Marble's 22 points led Iowa, while Basabe notched another double-double with 11 points and 10 rebounds. The Hawkeyes used 17 Buckeye turnovers to their advantage to earn the big victory.A full recap was written by Ben after the game if you want to try and get an idea on what might've went wrong for Ohio State in the loss. Only one game is on tap for Iowa this week, as they'll welcome Minnesota into Iowa City on Sunday afternoon.
Minnesota (13-4, 2-2): WIN @ Penn State (68-65), LOSS @ #5 Michigan State (87-75 OT):
Minnesota was able to split a pair of road games last week, but they almost were able to pull of one of the biggest road wins in school history in East Lansing on Saturday. Against Penn State on Wednesday, the Golden Gophers were playing catch-up for most of the second half, before grabbing the lead for good with under a minute to play. Minnesota looked to be in control early in the game, jumping out to a 12-2 lead before Penn State found their shot and took a 35-30 lead in the halftime break. DeAndre Mathieu was high-scorer for Minnesota in the game with 16 points.
Minnesota was the team blowing the lead on Saturday, wasting a 53-43 lead over the Spartans with just over 10 minutes to go in the second half. The Golden Gophers hadn't won in East Lansing since 1997 and have never beaten a Top-5 team on the road, and that streak will continue after Michigan State took over in overtime. Minnesota started off the game 7-9 from long range in the first half, but couldn't keep it up, only hitting 3-14 from three-point territory in the second half and overtime. Andre Hollins had 24 points for Minnesota, while Elliott Eliason swatted four shots for the second straight game. The Golden Gophers have a couple tough games this week, hosting Ohio State on Thursday night before traveling to Iowa on Sunday.
#23 Illinois (13-4, 2-2): LOSS @ #4 Wisconsin (95-70), LOSS @ Northwestern (49-43):
Illinois' stay in the Top-25 will be short-lived after they suffered two losses last week, one of them that can be explained while the other is a head-scratcher. The Fighting Illini didn't have any fun in Madison on Wednesday night, but against Wisconsin this year no teams have found any success. Illinois missed 13 straight shots in the first half as Wisconsin went on a 20-0 run to leave no doubt about the result of the game early. Rayvonte Rice did his best to keep Illinois in it, scoring 19 points and grabbing nine rebounds, but it wasn't nearly enough. Illinois was only able to hit just over 31% of their shots in the loss, which can help to explain the loss.
Many thought that Illinois would be able to rebound on Sunday night against Northwestern, but that was far from the case. Illinois only scored 15 points in the first half and trailed Northwestern by seven points at the break. Illinois responded coming out of the break, tying the game at 27 with 11:31 left in the second half, but they couldn't take the lead against the Wildcats. Tracy Abrams was the only Illinois player to hit double figures, scoring 13 points for a Fighting Illini team that shot a putrid 28% from the field. Illinois will return home this week and try to break their sudden slide, hosting Purdue on Wednesday before taking on Michigan State on Saturday.
Penn State (9-8, 0-4): LOSS v. Minnesota (68-65), LOSS v. Indiana (79-76):
Penn State could've very easily earned their first two Big Ten wins on the season, but they weren't able to hold late leads and allowed their opponents to overtake them in the final few minutes. The Nittany Lions took nearly seven minutes to make their first field goal against Minnesota, but caught fire after that, ending the half on a 28-13 run to take a 35-30 lead into the break. Tim Frazier scored 20 points in the game but fouled out with under a minute to go. The bigger surprise though was leading scorer D.J. Newbill not scoring a single point against Minnesota, only attempting two shots and fouling out after only 14 minutes on the floor. Allen Roberts missed a three-pointer that would've tied them game with a second to go.
Newbill found has game against Indiana, tying his career-high with 24 points against the Hoosiers. The Nittany Lions couldn't get Newbill and Frazier on the same page though, with Frazier only scoring 10 points after being saddled with foul trouble for most of the second half before fouling out. Penn State built up a 15-point lead in the first half against Indiana, but much like the Minnesota game, they weren't able to hold off the visitors. After spending last week at home, Penn State will hit the road this week with matchups against Michigan on Tuesday and Purdue on Saturday.
#4 Wisconsin (16-0, 3-0): WIN v. #23 Illinois (95-70):
Wisconsin left no doubt early on in their Wednesday night matchup against Illinois that they would be eclipsing the school record for best start to a season. The previous best start to a season for the Badgers was when they opened up 15-0 back in 1913-14. Wisconsin used a 20-0 run in the first half and had five players score at least 11 points as they cruised to victory over the Fighting Illini. Ben Brust led Wisconsin with 18 points while Sam Dekker added 17 points in the victory. This was the most points for Wisconsin in a Big Ten game since they scored 97 in a victory over Northwestern back in January of 1995. The Badgers will look to keep their perfect start going on Tuesday when they travel to Bloomington to face Indiana before hosting Michigan on Saturday.
Michigan (11-4, 3-0): WIN @ Nebraska (71-70):
Even without Mitch McGary, Michigan stayed perfect in Big Ten play by holding on to win a nail-biter against Nebraska on Thursday night. Freshman Derrick Walton Jr hit a big shot at the end of each half to help propel the Wolverines to victory. At the end of the first half, Walton Jr hit a half-court buzzer beater to give Michigan a 33-30 lead heading into the break. Then with the Wolverines down one with under 30 seconds to go, Walton Jr was fouled and hit the game-winning layup. Walton Jr missed the following free throw, but Michigan was able withstand the final couple Nebraska shots to take home the victory. Walton Jr finished with 10 points while Glenn Robinson III was Michigan's high-scorer with 19 points and Jordan Morgan put up 15 points. Michigan will welcome Penn State to Ann Arbor on Tuesday before squaring off with Wisconsin in Madison on Saturday.
Northwestern (8-9, 1-3): LOSS @ #20 Iowa (93-67), WIN v. #23 Illinois (49-43):
With two teams in the Top-25 on the schedule heading into the week, many were expecting Northwestern to drop both games they played last week, and fall to 0-4 in Big Ten play. While the first part of the week against Iowa went pretty much to plan, the game against Illinois deviated from the script. Northwestern never had much of a chance against the Hawkeyes, falling behind 10-0 to start the game, and never recovering. JerShon Cobb was the lone bright spot in the loss for Northwestern, pouring in 18 points and grabbing seven rebounds.
The bigger surprise for Northwestern was beating Illinois on Sunday night. Coming into the game, Northwestern had lost their three Big Ten games by at least 23 points. The Wildcats used smothering defense to hold Illinois to only 28% shooting from the field, and earn Chris Collins his first Big Ten win as Northwestern head coach. After Illinois had tied the game at 27, Tre Demps his three three-pointers in three minutes to extended the Northwestern lead to 43-36. The Wildcats never gave up the lead after that. Demps finished with 11 points, eight rebounds, and five assists off the bench to be the deciding factor in the game. Collins will have his work cut out for him and his team if they want to make it two wins in a row when they host Michigan State on Wednesday, before heading to Indiana on Saturday.
Indiana (11-5, 1-2): WIN @ Penn State (79-76):
Indiana looked to be on their way to a 0-3 Big Ten start after Penn State jumped out to a 15-point lead early in Saturday afternoon's game. The Hoosiers were able to work down the deficit to 41-37 at the half, and in the second half held as much as a six-point lead after a Trey Williams dunk with just over 13 minutes to play. Penn State kept things close before a late Austin Etherington gave Indiana the lead for good. Freshman Noah Vonieh scored a career-high 19 points and Yogi Ferrell pitched in 15 points and seven assists. The Hoosiers will try to give Wisconsin the first blemish on their record this season when the Badgers visit Bloomington on Tuesday, and will stay at home later in the week for a game against Northwestern on Saturday.