Big Ten

Big Ten basketball roundup: Weekend upsets galore

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Big Ten basketball roundup: Weekend upsets galore

A roundup of Big Ten basketball action from Friday, Nov. 20, 2015:

Maryland 65, Rider 58

The Terps trailed by a bucket at the half, but a 12-0 Rider run to start the second half had Maryland down 14. The Terps went on an 18-7 run from there, with Robert Carter’s layup making it a one-point game. Shortly thereafter, Melo Trimble tied the game with a three-point play, and a Rasheed Sulaimon bucket gave Maryland the lead. The Terps hit their free throws down the stretch to win the game, but they were out-shot on the evening, missed eight free throws and went just 5-for-22 from 3-point range. Carter had 13 points, and Jake Layman had a double-double with 11 points and 11 rebounds.

Xavier 86, Michigan 70

Xavier pulled away from Michigan at the end of the first half, closing the period on a 17-5 run. Both teams shot just 40 percent from the field, but the Wolverines missed eight free throws and were crushed in the rebounding battle, the Musketeers finishing with a 47-29 advantage. Caris LeVert had a big scoring night with 29 points, 15 of those coming on five made 3-pointers to go along with seven rebounds and a pair of steals.

Michigan State 92, Arkansas-Pine Bluff 46

The Spartans followed up their big Champions Classic win with a pounding of the Golden Lions. Michigan State had a 46-19 scoring edge in the first half and didn’t slow, posting a 46-27 advantage in the second half. The Spartans shot nearly 58 percent from the field and won the rebounding battle, 45-14. Javon Bess was the high man with 16 points, and Bryn Forbes had 14 and four made 3-pointers. Matt Costello had a double-double with 10 points and 10 boards. Denzel Valentine had seven points and 11 rebounds.

Minnesota 74, Missouri State 69

The Gophers had a lead as big as 18 at the outset of the second half, but Minnesota made just one basket over an eight-minute stretch, during which Missouri State closed the lead to just three. The lead eventually reached double digits again, but the Bears brought it back down to three with three minutes left. Carlos Morris’ triple proved the dagger, as free throws held off the Bears. Joey King had 18 points and six made 3-pointers, while Morris had 12 points and seven rebounds.

Northwestern 83, Columbia 80

The Cats faced a 12-point deficit in the second half and an eight-point deficit with three and a half minutes left, but buckets from Bryant McIntosh, Aaron Falzon, Tre Demps and Gavin Skelly cut it to a two-point game, allowing McIntosh’s basket in the final minute to force overtime. Demos hit a 3-pointer in the extra period to get the win for Northwestern. The Cats shot better than 62 percent in the second half and made 13 3-pointers on the night. McIntosh scored 32 points, and Demps had 22.

UT-Arlington 73, Ohio State 68

UT-Arlington used a 12-2 run to open the second half to turn a two-point halftime deficit into an eight-point lead. That lead never reached double digits, but the Buckeyes wouldn’t lead again, despite slicing the gap to three a couple times in the final seconds. The difference? The Mavericks went 16-for-19 from the free-throw line in the second half, while the Buckeyes went just 9-for-18 from the stripe in the final 20 minutes. Keita Bates-Diop had 16 points, and Jaquan Lyle had 15 in the loss.

Duquesne 78, Penn State 62

The Lions managed just 26 points in each half as the Dukes cruised to victory. Duquesne shot 50 percent from the field and made 17 3-pointers, while Penn State shot just 29.7 percent and went just 5-for-21 from 3-point range. Brandon Taylor had 14 points, Payton Banks had 12 points, and Shep Garner had 12 points.

Georgetown 71, Wisconsin 61

The Badgers trailed by five at the half but sliced the lead to two only for the Hoyas to stage a 16-6 run that extended the lead to 12 as Wisconsin couldn’t get within striking distance from there. The Badgers shot just 31.7 percent from the field and turned the ball over 14 times. Nigel Hayes had 22 points but needed 17 shots to get there. Ethan Happ had 12 points. Bronson Koenig had just nine points on an ice-cold shooting night, going 2-for-12 from the field.

[MORE BIG TEN: Illini drop to 1-3 after another upset loss to Chattanooga]

A roundup of Big Ten basketball action from Saturday, Nov. 21, 2015:

Chattanooga 81, Illinois 77

After erasing a deficit as large as 15 in the first half and as large as 12 in the second half, the Illini had a nine-point lead with six and a half minutes to play. But a 21-12 run for Chattanooga to finish the game sent Illinois to another upset loss and to a 1-3 start for the first time in 50 years. Malcolm Hill scored 25 points, and Mike Thorne Jr. had another double-double. But the Illini defense allowed the Mocs to shoot 50 percent from the field and hit 12 3-pointers.

Purdue 61, Old Dominion 39

The Boilers defense was on point, holding the Monarchs to a hideous 23-percent shooting mark, going 14-for-61 from the field and 2-for-14 from 3-point range. A.J. Hammons had a big day for Purdue, scoring 18 points and grabbing six rebounds, while Isaac Haas had 10 points and eight rebounds. Kendall Stephens had 12 points, coming on four made 3-pointers, but he was just 4-for-11 from deep.

Rutgers 87, Central Arkansas 84

In a back-and-forth game of mini spurts, Rutgers trailed by four with three and a half minutes to play. But the Knights went on a 7-0 run over the next minute, the first of two Corey Sanders layups being the go-ahead bucket. Mike Williams hit a 3 to make it a four-point lead, and after Central Arkansas tied it again, DeShawn Freeman scored before Sanders put it away with four free throws. Williams finished with 25 points with five made 3-pointers, while Freeman had 23 plus right rebounds, four steals and four blocks.

[SHOP BIG TEN: Get your Fighting Illini gear right here]

A roundup of Big Ten basketball action from Sunday, Nov. 22, 2015:

Texas Tech 81, Minnesota 68

Former Minnesota head coach Tubby Smith’s current team took it to his old team, scoring the game’s first eight points to jump out to an early lead. After the Gophers tied the game at 20, the Raiders went on an 11-2 run to re-extend the edge. Minnesota fought it to a two-point game midway through the second half, but Texas Tech smacked back with a 15-4 run to pull away. Carlos Morris and Joey King each scored 15 points.

Nebraska 92, Southeastern Louisiana 65

The Huskers put up 90-plus for the second time in four games this season. Nebraska scorched Southeastern Louisiana on the boards, winning the rebounding battle, 52-31, and the Huskers scored 22 points from the free-throw line. Meanwhile, the visiting Lions were 0-for-14 from 3-point range. Glynn Watson Jr. had 14 points to lead the Huskers, while Tai Webster, Michael Jacobson, Ed Morrow and Benny Parker all scored in double figures.

Purdue 85, Florida 70

Purdue built an early lead, but Florida slashed it down to three on multiple occasions in the second half. After the Gators made it 63-60, the Boilers went on a 20–3 run to pull away and turn things into a blowout. Purdue shot 50 percent from the field, holding Florida to just 40-percent shooting. Five Boilermakers were in double figures, with Rapheal Davis’ 18 points leading the way. P.J. Thompson stuffed the stat sheet, scoring 15 points with three made 3-pointers, five rebounds, four assists and two steals.

Wisconsin 74, VCU 73

The Badgers trailed by six at halftime, but the Rams made just one field goal in the first seven and a half minutes of the second half, allowing Wisconsin to score 18 points in that span and take a four-point lead. The game stayed tight from there, but VCU caught fire with four minutes to go, tying the game at 71 with two and a half minutes to go. That’s where it stayed until Nigel Hayes hit a go-ahead free throw with 51 seconds left. A VCU bucket with half a minute left gave the Rams a one-point edge, but Bronson Koenig drove with time running out, spun away from a defender and laid one in with his left hand for the win. The Badgers shot 53.1 percent from the field but turned the ball over 17 times. Koenig led the way with 22 points, and Ethan Happ had a double-double with 12 points and 10 rebounds.

See how they stack up: Week 12 college football top 25 rankings

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USA TODAY

See how they stack up: Week 12 college football top 25 rankings

With Week 12 in the books, here’s my top 25:

1. Oklahoma (10-1)

Still the team with the best resume in the country, no one can compete with OU’s wins over TCU, Ohio State and Oklahoma State, the latter two coming away from Norman. Baker Mayfield might not be a choir boy, but he’s the best player in the nation.

2. Miami (10-0)

You might think that being down 28-14 to Virginia in the second half was cringe-worthy, but the Canes made up for things by storming back with 30 unanswered points. Now they finally have to go away from South Florida for the first time since almost losing to North Carolina last month.

3. Alabama (11-0)

Tide gonna roll. But this Cupcake Weekend in the SEC has got to stop. While teams in other conferences are slugging it out against rivals, Bama gets to take a day off against Mercer? It’s just not fair. Also, Bama’s schedule is so soft, there’s no way it deserves to be the No. 1 team in the country.

4. Georgia (10-1)

The Dawgs should wrap an 11-1 regular season this weekend against Georgia Tech. But the SEC title game presents a kind of no-win scenario: undefeated Alabama or Auburn, who throttled Georgia earlier this month.

5. Wisconsin (11-0)

You didn’t need Wisconsin to do what it did to Iowa and Michigan to prove it had one of the best defenses in the country — but that sure didn’t help. Stockpiling national love with those two wins, a win in the Big Ten title game figures to make the Badgers a Playoff lock.

6. Clemson (10-1)

Why’d Kelly Bryant have to go and get hurt for that Syracuse game? The Tigers would be No. 1 and the undisputed best team in the country. Still, though, a win over Miami in the ACC title game ought to get the champs back into the Playoff.

7. Auburn (9-2)

Great job pounding Louisiana-Monroe, Tigers. You shall not escape the wrath over Cupcake Weekend in the SEC. That dumb game aside, Auburn and Alabama will meet in a titanic Iron Bowl this weekend with a trip to the SEC title game on the line — and perhaps a Playoff spot, as well.

8. Ohio State (9-2)

Not that pummeling Illinois is any big deal, but the Buckeyes are still alive in this thing and look like a team capable of making some Playoff noise. First, Ohio State has to win The Game and then the Big Ten title game to knock out undefeated Wisconsin.

9. Notre Dame (9-2)

Out of the Playoff chase thanks to that loss at Miami, Notre Dame squeaked by Navy this past weekend. Hope a New Year’s Six bowl game is enough for the Irish. We know it’s not enough for those ND fans. So maybe join a conference? Just saying.

10. TCU (9-2)

The Frogs can still make their mark on the Playoff race, even if they can’t get in themselves. The Big 12 title game will almost surely be TCU’s attempt at revenge on Oklahoma. Unfortunately, if revenge does come, it will probably cannibalize the conference’s Playoff hopes, too.

11. Penn State (9-2)

Why Penn State gave up 44 points to Nebraska, I do not know. What I do know is that probably no one cared because Penn State is going to go down as the most inconsequential 10-2 team of all-time. Such a bummer considering the preseason expectations for both the team and Saquon Barkley.

12. USC (10-2)

Yeah, I guess there’s still a way for USC to make the Playoff, but it’s hard to imagine that madness unfolding, even in the oft-mad college football. The Trojans get the winner of the Apple Cup in the Pac-12 title game.

13. UCF (10-0)

Finally we get our much-anticipated UCF-USF showdown this weekend. Make it count, Knights. This is probably gonna be Scott Frost’s last regular-season game in Orlando.

14. Washington (9-2)

It’s hard to say who has the edge in the Apple Cup, but certainly the stakes are high, with the winner going off to play USC in the Pac-12 title game. Can either team make the Playoff? Well, probably not, no.

15. Washington State (9-2)

Is this it for Mike Leach on The Palouse? He could be a hot candidate this offseason and leave for perceived greener pastures. Winning the Apple Cup would go a long way toward making that happen.

16. Mississippi State (8-3)

A win in the Egg Bowl means a 9-3 regular season for the Bulldogs with their three losses coming against three top-10 teams.

17. Oklahoma State (8-3)

Poor Okie State has been so good all year and had two losses to the two best teams in its conference, and then it went and lost to K-State for some ridiculous reason. The Mullet deserved better in 2017.

18. Northwestern (8-3)

The Cats are the fourth-best team in the Big Ten, simple as that, with wins over Michigan State and Iowa and conference losses to Wisconsin and Penn State. As commendable an effort as you’ll find in a highly competitive league. Plus, Fitz’s team is on a six-game win streak that could end up extending to eight.

19. Stanford (8-3)

Already with a win over Washington, Stanford could close the regular season with two wins over top-10 teams in its final three games. Also Bryce Love is back in the groove after back-to-back 100-yard games.

20. Memphis (9-1)

The Tigers have lost just one game all season, to the best Group of Five team out there. Heck of a season by Memphis.

21. Michigan State (8-3)

A 17-7 win over Maryland couldn't have been the most exciting way for anyone to spend their weekend. Sparty's had a mighty fine season, though, considering how badly things went in 2016.

22. LSU (8-3)

The SEC has seemingly gotten increasingly better as the year has progressed, with LSU and Mississippi State making for a solid-enough middle tier. But remember when LSU lost to Troy? That wasn’t good.

23. South Florida (9-1)

If not for that loss to Houston, USF’s showdown with UCF this weekend would be for Group of Five supremacy. Even without that, though, this should be a highly entertaining affair.

24. Virginia Tech (8-3)

The Hokies have a chance to salvage their tumble at the close of the season with a win at Virginia. But given how well the Cavs played at Miami this past weekend, a VT win is no sure thing.

25. Iowa State (7-4)

I understand the math and all, but can't the Big 12 just suspend its rules and send Iowa State to the title game? We all want to see the OU-ISU rematch. Why are you preventing us from being happy, Big 12?

See how they stack up: Week 11 college football top 25 rankings

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USA TODAY

See how they stack up: Week 11 college football top 25 rankings

With Week 11 in the books, here’s my top 25:

1. Oklahoma (9-1)

The Sooners probably won’t be No. 1 in the Playoff rankings, as the committee will almost surely move Bama up a notch. But OU has an incredible resume, one much better than the Tide’s, with wins over Ohio State, TCU and Okie State. No one in the country can compete with those wins.

2. Miami (9-0)

The Canes are too legit to quit after pulverizing Notre Dame on Saturday night. That signature win teamed with the prior week’s win over Virginia Tech makes that near loss to lowly North Carolina seem like forever ago. Welcome to Miami, indeed.

3. Alabama (10-0)

A great win on Saturday night by the Tide in what seemed like their first actual game of the season. The schedule has been soft as silk, but now Auburn’s status as an SEC juggernaut makes the Iron Bowl a colossal clash.

4. Georgia (9-1)

Knocked off the top of the college football mountain, the Dawgs still deserve to be in the Playoff field, just a one-loss team with that one loss coming to another top team and that still-excellent win at Notre Dame. The resume’s still there, but now the SEC title game will be for all the marbles.

5. Wisconsin (10-0)

Bucky’s sitting pretty after making Iowa look like an FCS team on Saturday — especially impressive considering what Iowa did the week prior. Expect Michigan and Minnesota to provide decent enough challenges, but it seems like Wisconsin’s set up for a Big Ten title-game date with Ohio State.

6. Clemson (9-1)

Miami is the king of the ACC, but thankfully the ACC title game looks to be a Playoff play-in game between the Tigers and Canes. The champs still have as good a shot at this thing as anyone.

7. Auburn (8-2)

Two-loss Auburn in the Playoff? It’s not crazy at all after what the Tigers did to Georgia on Saturday, destroying the No. 1 team in the country and setting up what will be another titanic Iron Bowl meeting with Bama.

8. Notre Dame (8-2)

The Irish’s Playoff hopes sank like a ship in Biscayne Bay thanks to the demolition Miami dolled out on Saturday night. ND’s resume is still fine — two losses to two Playoff-caliber teams. But with no conference title to play for, a two-loss ND team might as well be a six-loss ND team.

9. Ohio State (8-2)

Guess who's still lurking in the Playoff race? It seemed Brutus was dead as could be after getting woodshedded by Iowa last weekend, but then Ohio State put a whooping on Michigan State and everyone’s ears perked up again. Appearing destined for the Big Ten title game, things could get interesting.

10. TCU (8-2)

The Frogs will most likely still get a crack at a Big 12 title — and revenge on the Sooners, who picked em apart on Saturday — but the Playoff might be out of the cards now.

11. Oklahoma State (8-2)

You know who’s still really good despite having losses to the two top teams in the Big 12? Okie State. That was some game between the Pokes and the ‘Clones on Saturday. If only the Mullet could be unleashed on the Playoff. Alas.

12. USC (9-2)

Dramatically overrated in the last batch of Playoff rankings, the Trojans now seem to be the cream of the unimpressive Pac-12 after Washington’s loss. All sorts of madness would have to occur in order for USC — or any Pac-12 team — to land in the final four.

13. Penn State (8-2)

Great job beating up on Rutgers this weekend, Penn State. Now what? With games against Nebraska and Maryland left, will any preseason favorite (outside Florida State, of course) get less attention down the stretch than the Lions?

14. UCF (9-0)

Central Florida is that Group of Five team this year. If it beats USF in the regular-season finale, people you know will be like, “Why shouldn’t UCF be in the Playoff?” And you’ll just have to give them a look and walk away.

15. Washington State (9-2)

Wazzu has to win one game and it’ll play USC for a Pac-12 title. Despite the lack of Playoff stakes, the Cougs winning a conference championship would be a pretty big deal.

16. Washington (8-2)

Of course, standing in Wazzu’s way is Washington, which tripped up against Stanford and could follow up last year’s Playoff appearance with absolutely nothing.

17. NC State (7-3)

The ACC and SEC seemed to have flipped roles overnight. The once-mediocre SEC now has three playoff-caliber teams and a couple other decent ones. The once-awesome ACC now has two of the best teams in the country and then … NC State.

18. Mississippi State (7-3)

The Bulldogs put up one heck of a fight against Bama on Saturday, and if it wasn’t for that ridiculous sequence of play-calling following Bama’s missed field goal, they might have won. Oh well.

19. LSU (7-3)

LSU beat Arkansas on Saturday, which isn’t a terribly difficult thing to do. 2017 will go down as a “what if” year for the Bayou Bengals. As in, what if they hadn’t lost to Troy?

20. Stanford (7-3)

Two of Stanford’s losses have come against ranked teams. It’s now beaten Washington and could beat Notre Dame in two weeks. It has one of the best running backs in America. So shouldn’t Stanford be better?

21. Memphis (8-1)

Since losing at UCF, Memphis has rolled everyone, winning five straight by an average of 47.8-27.2. Good job, Memphis.

22. Arizona (7-3)

The Wildcats are 7-3 this season and have scored at least 45 points in every one of those wins. That includes last weekend’s win over Oregon State, in which Khalil Tate ran for 206 yards and two touchdowns. Dude's good.

23. Northwestern (7-3)

Meow. The Cats are winners of five straight, even if their overtime streak came to an end. The quest for a 9-3 finish is on, with only Minnesota and lowly Illinois left on the regular-season schedule.

24. Michigan State (7-3)

Two losses in three weeks for Sparty, who got absolutely steamrolled by Ohio State this past weekend. Michigan State will likely be rooting for Michigan in The Game as it would figure to wrap its regular season with wins over Maryland and Rutgers.

25. West Virginia (7-3)

The ‘Neers have only lost to Virginia Tech, TCU and Okie State, which is not too bad. But that’s a couple losses too many in the high-flying Big 12.

Others receiving votes:

Virginia Tech (7-3)

Things have bottomed out for the Hokies, who have lost back-to-back road games to Miami and Georgia Tech after a 7-1 start. Without the loss to the Jackets, Virginia Tech’s resume would look real nice. But alas.

Iowa State (6-4)

There was almost another Attack of the ‘Clones this past weekend in a thriller with Okie State. But the Pokes came out on top, sending Iowa State to its fourth loss. That dream Big 12 title game featuring the ‘Clones? A fantasy. Sigh.

Michigan (8-2)

Michigan only has two losses, which means it has to be kinda good, right? Well, it’s lost its only two games against ranked teams and its best win is Florida, so … no, I guess not.

South Florida (8-1)

Way to beat UConn, South Florida.