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Catching Up With the Big Ten

Basketball season is in full swing, and with the Big Ten season around the corner, it's about time to take a look at the rest of the conference.


The Ranked Opponents


Vitals: 9-0 on the season; number one in the AP poll; best win: UNC (83-59); number one to Kenpom

The Hoosiers have been every bit as good as many thought that Tom Crean's team would be coming into the season. Led once again by the outstanding play of Cody Zeller -- who leads the team in both scoring and rebounding -- Indiana is also deep when it comes to offensive firepower with four other Hoosiers averaging double digits in scoring. No wonder why the Hoosiers are Kenpom's number one team in Adj O.

Michigan won't see Indiana until February 2nd and March 10th.

Ohio State

Vitals: 6-1 on the season; number seven in the AP poll; loss: Duke (73-68); number six to Kenpom

Ohio State missed out on the opportunity for a solid win in week one when the Marquette game was postponed due to unsafe playing conditions on the aircraft carrier on which the game was to be held. Since then the Buckeyes have dealt with the teams many expected them to, and had one slip up against Duke in Cameron. The unquestioned alpha dog for Ohio State is not surprisingly Deshaun Thomas who is averaging 20 points a game at the moment.

Michigan will get an early test against Ohio State on January 13th, with the return trip for OSU falling on Feb 5th.


Vitals: 10-1 on the season; number 14 in the AP poll; loss: Duke (89-71); best win: Memphis (84-75); number 10 to Kenpom

Tubby Smith's squad is putting together quite the season so far. This is of course thanks to Rodney Williams Jr. with credit also going to the now healthy Trevor Mbakwe. The surprisingly unrelated Hollin's (Andre and Austin) have also chipped in to lead the way in the backcourt.

Michigan will only play Minnesota once this year, on January 17th.

Michigan State

Vitals: 8-2 on the season; number 19 in the AP poll; losses to UConn and Miami (FL); best win: at Kansas (67-64); 18th to Kenpom

The Spartans have had a couple rough outings so far this season, but regardless Tom Izzo's team looks like a vintage Michigan State squad. Kenpom has the Spartans 11th in Adj D, and MSU has nine guys averaging over 10 minutes a game. So far the bulk of the offense has fallen to point guard Keith Appling, now healthy Branden Dawson, and true freshman Gary Harris.

Michigan will see the Spartans on February 12th and March 2nd.


Vitals: 10-0 on the season; number 13 in the AP poll; best win: Gonzaga (85-74); 26th to Kenpom.

The Illini are doing their best to make Bruce Weber look like an incompetent jackass and John Groce look like every bit the genius he already looked like when building Ohio into a solid team over the last few years. Brandon Paul is once again the lead man on offense, scoring just shy of 20 points per game.

Michigan will face Illinois twice. First on January 27th and next on February 24th.

Stay tuned for the rest of the conference later in the week.