On Wednesday, the Big Ten had five teams in action and several marquee non-conference matchups. The results were mixed, but they did give us a little more insight into how this conference race might play out going forward and an intriguing look at the top teams.
Let's take a look at the action.
Game of the Night: Maryland Terrapins 86, Rhode Island 63
Well, there you go. The Terps finally looked like a true national contender. The Rams are not expected to be a Final Four team or anything, but Rhode Island is a quality unit and likely will at least be on the bubble for the NCAA Tournament by season's end. As such, this game looked competitive on paper.
Fortunately for Maryland, the team came out firing. The team finished with an impressive 1.18 points per possession on the night, had five players score double-digits, and three players score at least 15 points. This was a team effort and showed the potential of the Terps this season.
Unsurprisingly, the key player on the night was Melo Trimble. He finished with 17 points and was incredibly efficient, shooting 7-for-7 from two point range and 3-for-3 from the free throw line. Along with Trimble, Robert Carter had 15 points and nine rebounds and Rasheed Sulaimon had 17 points and four assists. It truly was a team effort where multiple guys were making major impacts.
Whether it was pretty or not, the good news for the Terps is that the team is sitting at 5-0 on the season and has already passed two of its bigger non-conference challenges. There are still plenty of tough games and opponents down the road, but there is a certain ring to being undefeated.
- UNLV 72, Indiana Hoosiers 69
The Hoosiers finished the team's trip to Maui with a pretty rough loss to UNLV. It was actually a relatively poor played game across the board. Notably, Indiana finished with a brutal 21 turnovers on the night including four each from James Blackmon, Yogi Ferrell, and Troy Williams. In fact, the team actually shot 40.6 percent from two point range and an impressive 55.0 percent from three point range and still lost. It was turnovers that doomed any shot at the win.
- Connecticut 74, Michigan Wolverines 60
The Wolverines had the team's second legitimate game of the season and for the second straight game, dropped a tough one to a top 25 team. Michigan actually had some highly competitive stretches, but after sitting Caris LeVert for eight minutes to end the first half, was never able to recover. LeVert had 21 points and five rebounds on the night and Derrick Walton had 10 points and four rebounds. Michigan will move on to face Charlotte on Thursday.
- Clemson 76, Rutgers Scarlet Knights 58
The Scarlet Knights dropped a tough one out in Las Vegas on Wednesday night against a solid Clemson team. DJ Foreman had 11 points and Deshawn Freeman had 13 points, but no other players scored double-digits and the team finished with an underwhelming 0.91 points per possession. Rutgers now sits at 3-3 on the season with three wins over underwhelming opponents and three losses to the team's tougher opponents. This team does have some nice pieces, but it just doesn't seem to have enough to really compete in these games.
- Wisconsin Badgers 85, Prairie View A&M 67
The Badgers had a relatively easy game on Wednesday night between the team's trip to New York and its road showdown with Oklahoma on Sunday. Wisconsin won the game pretty easily and not only had an impressive six players score double-digits, but also had 12 players see the floor at some point. Notably, Charlie Thomas finished with 12 points and six rebounds in 12 minutes of gameplay. Wisconsin is now 4-2 on the year and appears to be starting to trend up after a rough start.