This past week was sure an interesting one in Big Ten basketball circles. We enjoyed the high of winning the ACC/Big Ten challenge outright with an 8-6 final score, then witnessed the low of Michigan losing to NJIT.
After four weeks there are no more undefeated Big Ten programs, and many are left wondering about the depth of this league. It also presented a mighty challenge for our group of power poll voters, so let’s remind you of who they are first:
Andy Coppens – talking10.com (@AndyOnFootball)
Dave White – On The Banks (@OTB_SBNation)
Joe Dexter – BuckeyeBattleCry (@joedexter)
Michael Henry – BoiledSports (@BoiledSports & @therailroadtie)
Andy York – The Daily Gopher (@yorka1982)
Phillip Rossman-Reich – Lake The Posts (@RiseNU & @LakeThePosts)
Ken Kohl – BuckeyeBattleCry (@The_BBC)
Andrew Emmer – Testudo Times (@TestudoTimes)
Hondo Carpenter – Spartan Nation (@HondoCarpenter)
David Tucker – Testudo Times (@TestudoDave)
And it’s on to the poll…
– The Badgers weren’t even close to being punished for their 10-point loss to Duke in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge, but its hard to do that when only Michigan represented the Big Ten’s ranked teams with a win in the challenge.
– Personally, I was a bit surprised to see Michigan not punished more for its inexcusable and embarrassing loss to NJIT on Saturday. Then I took a look at what the rest of the conference didn’t do this week or in the weeks before and it becomes understandable — there weren’t a lot of impressive performances by the middle of the Big Ten so far.
– Illinois was a team I was waiting to buy in to, and after a loss to a ranked Miami squad in the challenge this past week I’m not sure we aren’t seeing the same thing we’ve seen every year under John Groce so far. You know, a team who starts off red hot, looks like a changed program and then lays eggs when they have to face top teams. In the only challenge they’ve received so far in 2014-15, the Illini failed, but didn’t move a spot in the poll. Very interesting stuff for sure.