Big Ten Ballin’: The Return
WNUR’s Greg Mroz (@wizard_of_mroz) returns with the first edition of this year’s weekly look around the Big Ten.
So here’s the scoop y’all, its ballin’ time again, and I’m going to give it to you in the coolest way possible. Six of the twelve teams, short, sweet, and to the point. But we like to keep it with a theme, a fun, sometime musical theme. This week, we keep it simple, with one of the greatest bands of all time, the Rolling Stones
Wisconsin – Satisfaction
“I can’t get no satisfaction” is what Mick Jagger used to say. Well, the Badgers have gotten much satisfaction this season so far. Their lone loss came to Indiana, but it’s tough to win at Assembly Hall. Sam Dekker has shown all of us, that there are plenty of reasons to be satisfied in Madison.
Ohio State – Gimme Shelter
“Its just a shot away” Well, its more than that for the Buckeyes. Thad Matta’s squad has lost 4 in a row, with the worst of the four coming at Nebraska, a 68-62 loss that gave the Cornhuskers their first Big Ten win. The Buckeyes need some shelter, because they have Illinois and Wisconsin in 2 of their next 3.
Michigan State – Jumpin’ Jack Flash
Well, there is nobody on this team named Jack that’s flashy, but there is someone like that named Gary Harris. Harris is legitimately the best all around guard in the conference, and one of the main reasons why Sparty is undefeated in conference and ranked 4th in the country. His 17.9 points per game has Tom Izzo beaming. Once Adrian Payne is fully healthy, this team will be even better.
Indiana – Paint It Black
Black is a great color to describe this Indiana team, because frankly there isn’t much that’s very positive about this squad. They had only scored 8 points until the final 3 minutes of the first half against Northwestern, and outside of Noah Vonleh and Yogi Ferrell, this team has been very inconsistent. Almost losing at home to LIU Brooklyn told us this would be a long year for Tom Crean’s squad. Expect MSU to paint Indiana black tonight at the Breslin Center.
Northwestern – You Can’t Always Get What You Want
But if you try sometimes, you just might find, you get what you need. Northwestern wants good offense, but what any team needs to win is good defense, and Chris Collins is getting good defense night in and night out. The Wildcats have given up a mere 48 points per game over their past 3 conference games, which included a home win vs #23 Illinois and on the road against Indiana. Despite having one of the worst offenses in college basketball, NU is getting what it needs from its defense: grind it out type wins.
Iowa – Get Off Of My Cloud
Wait, Iowa really is riding on a cloud right now. How did this team get this good? Fran McCaffrey has instilled a new attitude in this squad since he arrived, and now, its all come into place. They are 5th in the country in points per game and 3rd in rebounds per game. Roy Devin Marble and Aaron White have proven themselves to be elite players who command the basketball. Plus their losses have come against teams who are currently ranked 3rd (Wisconsin), 4th (Villanova), and 16th (Iowa State). So hey Iowa, stay on my cloud, because they are way above the rest of the conference with the exception of Michigan State and Wisconsin.
That’s all y’all! Next week, the other six teams, new theme! Stay classy, keep ballin’.