It’s hard to believe, but Wisconsin basketball and the rest of the Big Ten are a month into the college basketball season already. Every team has played at least one conference game, but the rest have been non-conference game. Conference games don’t pick up again until after the new year.
Records for all these teams will be as good as they get over the season. These games consist mainly of mid-major teams with a few power five teams mixed in. Right now, here is where I rank Wisconsin basketball and the rest of the Big Ten early in the season.
Early Big Ten Power Rankings
- Ohio State
- Michigan State
- Penn State
Why Wisconsin Basketball at 2?
At 7-2, Wisconsin basketball has played excellent over the last three weeks. After playing bad games against Providence and Robert Morris, the Badgers beat Virginia and and SMU to win the Fort Myers Tip-Off. They currently sit at a six game winning streak after beating Marquette and Michigan State in a span of four days.
I put the Badgers in this sport because they have already developed a good resume. Most teams at this point of the season have one or maybe two quad one wins. Wisconsin basketball already has three. Quad one wins are very important in determining your NCAA Tournament seed and if you can even get in. The Badgers have a tough road game at #1 Arizona Saturday, but getting a fourth quad one win would be very impressive this early in the season.
Other Big Ten Takeaways
Right now, Purdue, Wisconsin, and Illinois are the top three teams in the conference and I don’t think it’s close. Purdue is the clear top team. They won a loaded Maui Invitational field that consisted of teams like Marquette, Kansas, Tennessee, and Gonzaga. With Zach Edey on your team, you’re already one of the top teams in the country.
I think Illinois is going to be really good and is coming off a neutral court win over #11 Florida Atlantic. They might be better than Wisconsin basketball, but I give the Badgers the edge because of their quad one wins.
I’m not sure what to think about Northwestern, Indiana, and Ohio State yet. However, Northwestern owns the one loss on Purdue’s schedule and Ohio State has a win against a good Alabama team. I want to see what Northwestern can do on the road as they have benefited from just about all their games at home. They will have road games or neutral site games coming up against DePaul and Arizona State later this month. Indiana has one tough game so far and they were blown out by UConn. They have games coming up against Auburn and Kansas coming up too.
I expect Michigan State to pick it up once January comes around. They have a problem shooting the ball right now. Outside of Tyson Walker, they are having issues scoring the ball.
Early in the season, it looks like Maryland, Rutgers, Penn State, and Minnesota will struggle this season. It’s very odd for Maryland to be 5-4 with losses to Davidson and UAB already.
Sorry Andy Katz, but Nebraska is not a tournament team by any stretch. They are 7-2 but the seven wins are against mid-majors outside Oregon State. After blowing a double digit half time lead last night to Minnesota, it could be a tough Big Ten season for the Cornhuskers.
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