As we get closer to conference play, let’s talk about the current state of the Big Ten.
#3 Iowa (3-0) hasn’t played any significant opponents yet, but they’ve looked dominant. The Hawkeyes have won each of their games by at least 30 points. Reigning Big Ten Player of the Year Luka Garza has been an absolute force thus far, averaging 34 points and 9.7 rebounds.
Next game: Garza’s squad gets their first real test tonight, as they host #16 North Carolina at Carver-Hawkeye Arena (7:30, ESPN)
#4 Michigan State (5-0) is the first team in the league to win five games. They had an impressive victory at #10 Duke last Tuesday. Junior transfer Joey Hauser leads the team in both points and rebounds in the early going.
Next game: The Spartans draw another tough road game at #18 Virginia on Wednesday night (9:15, ESPN)
#6 Illinois (3-1) suffered their first loss of the season at the hands of #2 Baylor last Wednesday. The Illini’s two convincing wins to open the season were followed by a narrow victory over Ohio and the loss to the Bears.
Next game: Illinois will immediately be tested again, traveling to Cameron Indoor for a matchup with Duke tonight (9:30, ESPN)
#14 Wisconsin (3-1) had one of the worst beats I’ve ever seen last Friday night at Marquette.
Gotta box out there, that’s grade level stuff. I may have a three inch vertical, but my box out skills are elite.
Next game: The Badgers look to recover as they host Rhode Island tomorrow afternoon (4:30, BTN)
#21 Rutgers (3-0) is off to a strong start despite losing senior guard Geo Baker to an ankle injury in their season opener. Freshman center Cliff Omoruyi is showing why he was so heavily recruited coming out of Roselle Catholic.
Next game: The Scarlet Knights will host the covid-battered Syracuse Orange tonight at the RAC (9:30, ESPN 2)
#22 Ohio State (3-0) has looked good early on. Junior Justice Sueing leads the Buckeyes in points through its first three games. Also can only hope that with a last name like Sueing, if basketball doesn’t work out, he becomes a lawyer.
Next game: The Buckeyes travel to South Bend for a matchup with Notre Dame tonight (7:30, ESPN 2)
Penn State (2-1) took their first lost of the season on Sunday, a 98-92 defeat at the hands of Seton Hall. Sophomore Seth Lundy has shouldered the scoring load for the Nittany Lions with 22.3 per game.
Next game: Penn State heads to Virginia Tech to take on the #15 Hokies tonight (9 PM, ESPNU)
Nebraska (3-1) is 3-1, with a loss to Nevada on Thanksgiving.
Next game: The Cornhuskers host Georgia Tech in Lincoln tomorrow night (7:15, ESPN 2)
Purdue (3-1) also took their only loss of the season on Thanksgiving to Clemson.
Next game: The Boilermakers fly down to Coral Gables for a matchup with Miami tonight (5 PM, ESPN 2)
Northwestern (2-0) has played just two games and won both of them.
Next game: The Wildcats play easily their toughest opponent in Pittsburgh tomorrow night at home (9:15, ESPN 2)
Maryland (4-0) has handily won each of its first four matchups, despite losing its two best players from a year ago.
Next game: The Terrapins draw Clemson on the road tomorrow (5:00, ESPN 2)
Minnesota (4-0) is unscathed four games into the season.
Next game: The Golden Gophers host Boston College in Minneapolis tonight (7:00 , ESPNU)
Indiana (3-1) has looked good outside of being blown out by #13 Texas a week ago.
Next game: The Hoosiers take on a ranked opponent in Tallahassee tomorrow night, matching up against Florida State (9:15, ESPN)
Michigan (4-0) has won each of their first four contests fairly convincingly.
Next game: Juwan Howard’s team will not play until they open conference play at home against Penn State on Sunday (2 PM, BTN)