Back from sunny, warm Hawaii... tough to come back to the winter wonderland that is West Michigan. Some of the inevitable happened when I was gone... IU "lost" Kelvin Sampson in hopes of avoiding major reprecussions from the NCAA. Wisconsin stepped closer to an unlikely Big Ten title - while Purdue and Indiana continue to nip at the Badgers' heels. Four teams are tourney time locks, with two - OSU and Minnesota - hoping to play their way in. It's the best time of the year - March is upon us!
2/26 - Ohio State at Indiana
2/26 - Northwestern at Michigan
2/27 - Iowa at Penn State
2/27 - Minnesota at Purdue
2/28 - Michigan State at Wisconsin* Tiebreaker
3/1 - Northwestern at Purdue
3/1 - Ohio State at Minnesota
3/1 - Michigan at Penn State
3/2 - Indiana at Michigan State
3/2 - Illinois at Iowa
Phats' picks for this week...
Ohio State at Indiana- OSU is really faltering down the stretch here lately, this would go a LONG way in securing a NCAA birth that once looked like a lock. The big question for the Hoosier who will be coaching? IU at home too much. INDIANA 71 ohio state 63
MICHIGAN 66 northwestern 57
PENN STATE 64 iowa 63
Minnesota at Purdue- Purdue the surprise of the big ten this year, even to us diehard Boiler fans can't let their guard down against a very dangerous Gopher team. Having a week off between games you'll see the rust earlier, but the 6th man, the Paint Crew will help keep the energy up and the Boilers will pull away late. PURDUE 73 minnesota 65
Michigan State at Wisconsin- The Spartans are a great team when the game is played in East Lansing, this one is in the Kohl Center and that means, Badgers win. WISCONSIN 73 michigan state 65 (although I am pulling for MSU!)
PURDUE 81 northwestern 57(Boilers won't lose on Senior Day! even starting freshmen!)
MINNESOTA 65 ohio state 61
MICHIGAN 64 penn state 58
Indiana at Michigan State- Payback time for the Spartans. After getting embarrassed on ESPN with College Gameday there, you know Izzo will have his guys ready for this one. IU has done well on the road and has gotten some luck as well, that all runs out in East Lansing. MSU will get a big game from Neitzel, and the MSU Defense will hold Webster, I mean Eric Gordon in check, and roll from there MICHIGAN STATE 71 indiana 59
Illinois at Iowa- Iowa was starting to play better until that loss to Michigan at home. Illini have too much talent for the record they have, Illinois will pull out a rare big ten road win. ILLINOIS 68 iowa 62
Gamm's picks for the week...
Not a ton of time between work and some sun time here in Maui... but here are my picks for the week: 2
/26 - Ohio State at Indiana - IU almost tanked at NU but found a way to win. The comfort of the home crowd will carry the Hoosiers to a win over an OSU team that is a little stuck right now. Indiana 74 - Ohio State 62.
2/26 - Northwestern at Michigan - Northwestern has been close so often this season, only to fail. These teams are very similar. The Wildcats are bound to win eventually... NU 60 - Michigan 58
2/27 - Iowa at Penn State - A great chance for Penn State to step closer to the NIT. PSU 65 - Iowa 61.
2/27 - Minnesota at Purdue - The Gophers can be a handful, but this is Purdue's year. Purdue 70 - Minnesota 59.
2/28 - Michigan State at Wisconsin* Tiebreaker - MSU hasn't beaten Bo Ryan's Badgers in the Kohl Center. The Spartans seem to be back on track. Can they hand the Badgers a rare loss at home? I think they can and will. MSU 65 - Wisconsin 63.
3/1 - Northwestern at Purdue - Might be a trap game if on the road. But Purdue rolls. PU 78 - NU 62.
3/1 - Ohio State at Minnesota - OSU is in dire need of wins to secure an NCAA berth. Not gonna happen in the barn. Minnesota 67 - Ohio State 62.
3/1 - Michigan at Penn State - A real chance for Penn State to serve more notice in the Big Ten. Michigan is even more short handed and Penn State has a lot of fight in them. PSU 66 - Michigan 59.
3/2 - Indiana at Michigan State - Payback time. MSU stays unbeaten at home. State 73 - Indiana 67.
3/2 - Illinois at Iowa - Illinois has really fallen on hard times this season. Iowa is tough at home. Recipe for an Illini defeat. Iowa 62 - Illinois 58