Posted on: March 14, 2010 5:39 pm
El Ohio State wins the Big Ten Tournament in resounding fashion, 90-61 over Minnesota. This is the Buckeyes first tourney title since '07, when they rode old man Oden all the way to the Final Four. Can Evan Turner do the same?
All signs continue to point towards 'yes', as the phenom racked up his second 31-point game in a row, to go with 12 boards and 6 dimes. Fellow guards David Lighty and Jon Diebler pitched in with 20 points and 19 points respectively.
Coming off a 2-OT semifinal thriller, the Buckeyes looked no worse for the wear as their 6-man rotation took a 3 point halftime lead and exploded to a 29 point win. Ohio State has a huge talent advantage over Minnesota, but you rarely see a Tubby Smith coached team A) get blown out, and B) give up 90 points.
Bracketologists and Bracktiatrists alike are scrambling to find the correct prognosis to the Big Ten's malady. Illinois came to Indy with the belief that a win over Wisconsin in the quarters would lock up a bid to the dance, however, it appears they've been hoisted by the Tubster and Minnesota, who battled out of a 6-seed to finish runner-ups.
It's understood the selection committee wants to have the field locked and loaded a couple of hours before the broadcast, so you have to think if the Big Ten is to only get 4 bids, the Illini are NIT bound.
Posted on: March 13, 2010 5:39 pm
Edited on: March 13, 2010 5:41 pm
That's all Purdue could muster in the first half, as Minnesota builds an insurmountable 37-11 halftime lead in the Big Ten semis.
We knew the Boilers would struggle for points without Hummel, but this is an abject farce of a performance and a potentially damning blow to their seeding tomorrow. Talk about flunking the eye-test.
Gene Keady, have you ever seen anything this ugly?
I know I have.
Posted on: March 13, 2010 4:50 pm
Edited on: March 13, 2010 4:54 pm
Evan Turner's 31 points and 10 rebounds propelled the top-seeded Buckeyes past Illinois in a double OT thriller. The Bucks advance to tomorrow's finals with heavy legs as 4 Ohio State starters logged over 40 minutes, and 3 stuck it out for all 50.
Turner was fantastic yet again, though notching the tainted triple-double of 31, 10 and 10 TO's, and fouling out with a minute left in the 2nd OT.
The Illini got 22 points out of Demetri McCamey and 18 boards from forward Mike Davis but will undoubtedly lament two wasted opportunities at the end of regulation and overtime where they ran out the clock without getting a game-winning shot in the air. Still a nice showing in Indy for Illinois as they will now rest up for the dance.
The winner of Minnesota and Purdue, just underway, will have to like their chances to upset the Buckeyes, who really only use 6 players. However, Turner has never given us reason to doubt his pluck and the Bucks have a lot to play for with a #1 seed still on the table.
Posted on: March 13, 2010 2:08 am
Edited on: March 13, 2010 2:11 am
Semis are set in Indy after a rather unexpected upsurge of excitement that began with a miracle and ended with a Tub.
Half-court game winning buzzer beater of the day
The heaving heroics of Evan Turner kept the Big Ten Tournament from dissolving into complete disarray, as Ohio State nipped Michigan 69-68. CBS's George Hamilton opines what we were all thinking as we watched the play unfold, what could John Beileine be thinking? Employing the prevent defense and taking your chances on a heave might work out against most foes, but Evan Turner with a clean look from 35-feet goes in 50% of the time.
Most Outstanding Performance in the Face of the NIT
The Fighting Illini likely sealed an invitation to the dance with 58-54 win over the 4th seeded Badgers. For 36 minutes, Wisconsin was Indiana. The Badgers could only muster a paltry 20 points in the first half on 18% shooting. A too-little-too-late flurry of 3's made the score respectable, but Illinois controlled throughout, locking up at least 5 Big Ten bids.
Score one for the Tub-ster and his Minnesota Golden Gophers who upset Michigan State in OT, 72-67. The loss prolongs the Spartan's confounding BT Tournament woes, now nine seasons removed from their last tournament title.
Make it a round of Boilermakers...
Purdue dismissed Northwestern thanks to 28 points from guard E'Twaun Moore, and 22 from center JaJuan Johnson. Finding points is going to be an ongoing concern for the Boilers and it's good to see their studs step up in the clutch. I guess.
Lunch pails and hard hats
-E'Twaun Moore, Purdue: 28 pts, 5 rebs
-Mike Tisdale, Illinois: 21 pts
-JaJuan Johnson, Purdue: 22 pts, 8 rebs
-Manny Harris, Michigan: 26 pts, 6 rebs
-Evan Turner, Ohio St: 18 pts, 8 assits
Big Ten Semifinals
(5) Illinois vs. (1) Ohio State
The Buckeyes soundly swept the Illini in the regular season and it's hard to imagine they'd play as poorly as they did today. Illinois punched their ticket and fight for position but can they rebound their emotions? Turner will do what he do, and Illini guard Demtri McCamey needs to fight his stroke to help big man Mike Tisdale, who has really become a force of late. Expect a better effort from the Bucks but I expect McCamey to push this one down to the wire. 1:40
(6) Minnesota vs. (2) Purdue
Minnesota could steal another bid for the league with a trip to the finals, so expect piqued intensity in the Gopher's ball-line defense. First team to 60, ehh, 55, likely wins, and with E'Twaun Moore's ability to create, I think it'll be the Boilermakers. 4:00
And in case you've just awoke from a coma, congrats, and here's what you missed in the Big Ten today, you drama queen, you:
Posted on: March 12, 2010 2:02 pm
Edited on: March 12, 2010 3:26 pm
Evan Turner hits a 30 footer at the buzzer to beat Michigan 69-68 as time expires. If there was a debate on who should be Player of the Year nationally (and I think there was), Evan Turner probably just ended it. A heartbreaking loss for Michigan and exactly the spark that could make Ohio State very dangerous in the Big Dance. What an ending!
Posted on: March 12, 2010 10:50 am
Good morning! You ready for some basketball?
Me too. Here are ten things to look out for today...
(1) Greivis Vasquez chasing the NCAA hair gel record. The ACC Player of the Year is closing in on the All-Time NCAA record for gallons of hair gel used in a single season. Vasquez, who prefers LA Looks - Level 10 Cement Hold, is just a few faux hawks away from breaking the record held by former UCLA head coach Steve Lavin. Maryland vs. Georgia Tech, 7:00 pm
(2) The Hummel-less Boilermakers. Purdue begins their Big Ten tournament title defense today without star player Robbie Hummel. The junior forward, who was averaging 16 per game, tore his ACL on February 24, leaving him sidelined for the remainder of the year. Purdue vs. Northwestern, 6:30 pm
(3) Kentucky begins their return to glory. It has been six years since the Wildcats won the SEC Tournament. Today marks the beginning of the end for the rest of the SEC. Kentucky vs. Alabama, 1:00 pm
(4) Marquette and Georgetown? Who let them in? The Golden Eagles and the Hoyas pulled off upsets yesterday over 'Nova and Syracuse to advance to the Big East semifinals. Which team will continue leaving the dream and move on to the finals? Only time will tell. My money is on Greg Monroe. Georgetown vs. Marquette, 7:00 pm
(5) Duke slapping floors all the way to a #1 seed. Duke controls their own NCAA seeding destiny as they enter the ACC tournament as the top team for the first time in four years. They play Virginia in a rematch of a game we saw on our Road Trip. If history repeats itself, Duke will win in a blowout and I will stare at the hot blonde two rows down in front of me. Duke vs. Virginia, 12:00 pm
(6) Are the banks still open in Madison Square Garden? West Virginia's Da'sean Butler banked in a three-pointer at the buzzer last night to beat Cincinnati's "Born Ready" in his hometown. Today, the Mountaineers face the Fighting Flat-tops of Notre Dame in the semis. Look out Dub-V, Harangody is back and he's hungry. West Virginia vs. Notre Dame, 7:00 pm
(7) UCLA vs. California. You don't actually need to watch this. It will probably break your heart if you do. UCLA is terrible. But, I had to show the Pac-10 some love. UCLA vs. Cal, 9:18 pm
(8) Wayne Chism's headband is almost off. Wayne Chism's headband is barely hanging on to his noggin as his 8-year career comes to a close. Will today be the day that it finally flies of the back of his head? Or will it continue to hang on for dear life as Chism jacks up ill-advised threes? Tennessee vs. Ole Miss, 3:15 pm
(9) Support the N.J.I.T. If you care about your most prized electronic possessions, you'll support the New Jersey Institute of Technology. Remember, they'll be your tech support when those porn windows keep popping up on your desktop. N.J.I.T. vs. Houston Baptist, 9:30 pm
(10) Jimmer Fredette is the real deal. BYU's Fredette has been demolishing records all season and he's trying to add Mountain West Conference champ to his resume. Today, his BYU Whatever-They-Are's face Stacey Augmon and Greg Anthony's Running Rebels. Watch this one, because Grandmama says so. BYU vs. UNLV, 11:30 pm
Enjoy your day.
Posted on: March 12, 2010 10:31 am
Edited on: March 12, 2010 11:06 am
A bubbly Big Ten tips-off at noon with Michigan battling arch rival Ohio State, commencing the Evan Turner Show. The POY finalist is certainly worth keeping an eye on, but some major bracket fallout is expected in the later sessions.
At 2:00, Illinois takes on Wisconsin in a fight for NCAA Tournament salvation. It's been an up and down season for Bruce Webber's bunch, from handing Wisconsin its only home loss of the year last month to dropping five of its last six conference games to seal their fragile fate.
If Minnesota can find some scoring and upset Michigan State in the 8:55 tip, it just might be enough to propel them to the dance, especially if Illinois is unable to beat Wisconsin. The Gophers were swept by the Spartans in the regular season, and you know what they say about trying to beat a team for the third time...which may or may not hold water statistically, I have yet to analyze the datum. Hard to believe with Izzo's Final Four prowess that Sparty hasn't won this tournament in 10 years.
Now, let's whip out a hypothetical where both Illinois and Minnesota falter, as expected. Will the Big Ten really be just a 4-bid league? Many factors are at play here obviously, but what about Northwestern? The Wildcats are not mentioned on anyone's radar, thanks to a 7-11 conference record, but with 20 wins overall that include Notre Dame, a full-strength Purdue, and Illinois, perhaps they'll claw their way into tournament discussion if they can dispatch the wounded Boilermakers tonight at 6:30. Hey, if Georgia Tech can dance with a sub .500 conference record, then why not the Wildcats? Contrary to long-held attitudes, the ACC was hardly a juggernaut this year, certainly no tougher than the Big Ten. Come on, they've never been to the tournament people.
It will be an exciting, borderline enchanting day in Indianapolis as the fate of its 2-3 bubble teams will have a tremendous impact on the national landscape. All that and Evan Turner. Enjoy.
Posted on: March 11, 2010 7:14 pm
Edited on: March 11, 2010 7:16 pm
A 46-point second half rockets Northwestern past Indiana, 73-58 in opening round action in the Big Ten Tournament. The Hoosiers, bless their hearts, led by three at the half before Northwestern's "we're about to lose our second game in a row to Indiana" light kicked on and and they never looked back.
This is the first 20 win season in the history of Northwestern hoops, who've never danced the almighty NCAA Tourney tango, despite a treasured history defined by a 1931 Helms Title in the throws of the Dust Bowl.
The Wildcats get a piece of second-seeded Purdue tomorrow night at 6:30, a team they defeated on their home floor back in January. The pre-Hummel-excuse era, if you will. Could be a classic.
Earlier in the afternoon, Michigan begrudgingly held off a lifeless Iowa, 59-52. The Wolverines benefited from 15 free-throws to the Hawks' 3 and will now meet the top seed and chief rival, Ohio State, meaning I can now post this:
Penn State v. Minnesota is the night capper in Indy, with the Gophers on the tournament morphine drip.
Complete Big Ten bracket