Storyline of the Day
On the final non-conference Saturday, six teams were in action with five of them being heavily favored in home games against teams from lesser conferences. Today was one of the few days this season that the conference as a whole was able to take care of business and dominate all of the games they were supposed to dominate. IU drew the toughest game of the day, taking on Georgetown in Madison Square Garden.
Game of the Day: Indiana vs Georgetown
The best game of the day was unfortunately also the only B1G loss of the day. The Indiana Hoosiers traveled out to NYC for the second time this season, this time to face the Big East's Georgetown Hoyas. IU would eventually lose in overtime. The loss was a missed opportunity for the Hoosiers, as a win over a good Georgetown squad would certainly have paid dividends on Selection Sunday.
Indiana entered the second half with a 40-30 lead, but D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera led the Hoyas back into the game. Georgetown eventually managed a 5-point lead with a minute to go, Yogi Ferrell hit back-to-back threes and sent the game to OT. In the extra period the Hoosiers just couldn't keep pace and fell 91-87. Ferrell led the team with 27, while Troy Williams and James Blackmon Jr added 23 and 22 respectively. IU opens conference play on New Year's Eve at Nebraska.
#15 Maryland vs Oakland
Dez Wells returned, and the Maryland Terrapins finished their strong non-conference run with a win over the Golden Grizzlies. Wells had 10 points off the bench, while Melo Trimble led the team with 17. Jake Layman added a double-double with 15 and 12 as the Terrapins controlled the game the whole way. On Tuesday, Maryland will play their first ever B1G game against Michigan State in East Lansing.
#21 Ohio State vs Wright State
The Buckeyes really dominated throughout this game, and put together a very impressive effort on both ends of the court, finishing the game with a score of 100-55. D'Angelo Russell led all scorers with 24 points, shooting 7-8 from the field and 6-6 from behind the arc. Amir Williams also dominated the Raiders on the inside, finishing with 21 points, 7 rebounds and 4 blocks. OSU get Iowa at home to start the B1G season on Tuesday.
Minnesota vs UNC-Wilmington
The Golden Gophers scored 108 points! Minnesota actually fell one short of their highest point total of the season, but DeAndre Mathieu had a career day with 13 points, 11 assists, 4 steals and 0 turnovers. Junior college transfer Carlos Morris also added a game-high 24 points, including a perfect 7-7 from the charity stripe. A trip to Mackey Arena and Purdue awaits the Gophers on Wednesday.
Northwestern vs Northern Kentucky
The Northern Kentucky Norse took on their third B1G team of the season, the Northwestern Wildcats, and where blown out for the third time. Despite having one of the best nicknames in sports, NKU lost to Wiscy by 31, Nebrasketball by 19 and went down 76-55 to NU. Junior Tre Demps scored 23 points to lead his team. One impressive stat: the Wildcats went a perfect 18-18 shooting free throws. Northwestern will be the first B1G team to travel to Rutgers for a conference game on Tuesday.
Illinois vs Kennesaw State
The Fighting Illini had a 54-18 lead at halftime against Kennesaw State, and it only got worse for the Owls as they lost 93-45. Rayvonte Rice had 21 points for Illinois, going a perfect 7-7 from the field. Malcolm Hill added 16 and Aaron Cosby had 13 as the Illini crushed the Owls and earned an easy victory. Next up is a date at Michigan to start conference play.