Conference play is back on the court, and here’s a look at this week’s Big Ten Basketball Power Rankings.
1. Purdue – Hands down the best team in the conference and the country as January moves to mid-month this weekend.
2. Illinois – A blowout over Northwestern followed by a loss at Purdue that really wasn’t as close as the final score indicated summed up the week for Illinois.
3. Wisconsin – The Badgers are definitely in an upward trajectory and very well could challenge Illinois for the second spot before too long.
4. Ohio State – Buckeyes have to find a better way to close games and not let things slip through their fingers in the closing minutes to be a great team.
5. Michigan State – The Spartans need a good showing against Illinois this week to stop a potential free fall in the standings as well as the rankings.
6. Nebraska – Tale of two teams for the impressive Huskers who are great at home but not so much on the road.
7. Iowa – The Hawkeyes are still finding their way but it appears things are beginning to gel in their quest for more consistency.
8. Northwestern – A roller coaster last few weeks for the Wildcats after a 30-point blowout loss to Illinois followed by a win over Michigan State.
9. Indiana – The Hoosiers are still a mixed bag but an Ohio State win last week was definitely a positive.
10. Minnesota – The days of the Gophers being a gimme win for teams may be over with Michigan and Maryland victories last week for Minnesota.
11. Maryland – A couple of losses to Purdue and Minnesota last week didn’t help Maryland’s tournament resume by any means.
12. Penn State – Talent is there but results have been sketchy for the Nittany Lions who lost to Michigan State then beat Michigan last week.
13. Rutgers – Still looking for its first conference win, Rutgers is trying to stay out of the basement in the conference standings.
14. Michigan – While the football team celebrated a National Championship this week, it was another patch of rough sleeping on the hardwood for the Wolverines.
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