We are going to try and do this the rest of the season....assuming real life does not get in the way. Its February...which means you have about 5 weeks to get your NCAA qualifications in order....or if you are Minnesota figure out how to play your best four games of the season in the Big Ten Tournament.
Anyways, in case you have forgotten the deal, I vote weekly in a Big Ten Basketball Power Poll for Talkin10.com along with several other Big Ten bloggers. Our votes are cast on Sunday night...meaning the votes you will see below will not take into any consideration games post Sunday night. I will give you my votes, and then put in at the bottom how the compilation of the voters ranked the teams in each spot. If you want to see the full poll, it can be linked to at Talking10.com here.
So onto the rankings:
#1 Wisconsin Badgers (19-2 (7-1)) LW: 1
The Badgers had no problem with Iowa in Iowa City and are still the clear #1 choice. They will have their toughest test in a while Wednesday night when they host Indiana, but really don't have an obvious potential loss on the schedule until the end of the month at Maryland.
#2 Ohio State Buckeyes (17-5 (6-3)) LW: 2
The Buckeyes showed they deserve this spot with a big 80-56 thrashing of Maryland last week. The Buckeyes have trips to Purdue and Michigan State in the next two weeks, but then the schedule gets quite easy until a showdown against Wisconsin to end the regular season.
#2 Overall--Ohio State
#3 Maryland Terrapins (18-4 (6-3)) LW: 3
Maryland stays at #3 after a big loss to the aforementioned Buckeyes. They still are one of the top teams in the conference however. As long as they can take care of business in Iowa City this weekend, a big game against Indiana next week will loom large.
#4 Indiana Hoosiers (16-6 (6-3)) LW: 4
The Hoosiers went 1-1 last week with a win over Rutgers, but a loss at suddenly surging Purdue. The Hoosiers will be in a dog fight for a spot in the top four the next week and a half with games at Wisconsin and at Maryland looking daunting.
#5 Michigan State Spartans (15-7 (6-3)) LW: 8
I was fairly down on the Spartans, and wins over Rutgers and Michigan really shouldn't bring them up this high from last week, but its not a great year for the Big Ten....so it does. With Illinois and Northwestern at home on the schedule upcoming...they shouldn't be dropping anytime soon either.
#5 Overall--Michigan State
#6 Purdue Boilermakers (14-8 (6-3)) LW: 9
I definitely have Purdue higher than others, but the Boilermakers seem to have it figured out right now. A Big win over in-state rival Indiana was big..and it sets up a nice showdown against the Buckeyes Wednesday.
#6 Overall-- Michigan
#7 Michigan Wolverines (13-9 (6-4) LW: 6
The Wolverines split with Nebraska and Michigan State last week, but may not be here for long with games against Iowa Thursday and Indiana Sunday. Both will be tough tasks for the wounded Wolverines.
#8 Iowa Hawkeyes (13-8 (4-4)) LW:5
Oh Iowa. Three losses in a row...but two against Wisconsin. A loss to Purdue looks better than it did earlier. Iowa can try and claw its way back up in the rankings, but it won't be easy with Michigan and Maryland this week.
#9 Illinois Fighting Illini (14-8 (4-5)) LW:11
Illinois moves up two spots just because everyone else ahead of them lost. They squeaked out a win over Penn State, and should get past Rutgers later this week before going to East Lansing for a big game.
#10 Nebraska Cornhuskers (12-9 (4-5)) LW:7
Nebraska starts our list of stinkers this week after losing two games handily to Michigan and Minnesota. Northwestern and Penn State should be wins this week...but should is never guaranteed.
#11 Penn State Nittany Lions (14-8 (2-7) LW:13
After a promising non-conference season, Penn State looked like thet might break through in the Big Ten this year. Nope. They lost a narrow game to Illinois this past week, and beat a crappy Gopher squad in Happy Valley. Next four games Maryland, Nebraska, Ohio State, Maryland. Ouch. Enjoy11th for a week.
#11 Overall--Penn State
#12 Minnesota Gophers (14-9 (3-7)) LW:10
The Gophers are just not very good.A loss at Penn State marred a win over Nebraska.Purdue and Iowa are winnable but not if they play like they have.
#13 Rutgers Scarlet Knights (10-13 (2-8) LW:14
Rutgers is just not good. Losses to Michigan State and Indiana aren't terrible...but the Scarlet Knights are.
#14 Northwestern Wildcats (10-11 (1-7) LW:12
Northwestern. Sigh. What will happen first...Cubs win the world series or Northwestern goes to the NCAAs....I'm betting on hell freezing over.
Comment and tell me where you think I am right, wrong, or just stupid.