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Week 15: BTPowerhouse Big Ten Game of the Week: Purdue Boilermakers at Indiana Hoosiers

Check out the top games for the Big Ten this week.

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With the majority of Big Ten play now behind us, we are starting to get to the "money" portion of the schedule.  This is where teams determine whether they end up playing in the postseason, if they have a serious shot at the Big Ten title, and how this season will look in the future.  March is obviously the most important time of the year for college basketball, but late February is where teams set themselves up for March.  It's a critical time and let's take a look at the best games this week.

Game Of The Week:

Purdue at Indiana: Finally.  It's finally time that this rivalry gets the attention it deserves.  It's been quite some time since one of these games could be marketed as being between two teams having something on the line.  Even earlier this season, most thought Purdue was largely playing for an NIT bid.  This time, both teams are fighting for NCAA Tournament seeding and have a serious shot at a double bye in the Big Ten Tournament.  Purdue got the upside in the first game between these two thanks in large part to its frontcourt of Isaac Haas and AJ Hammons, but Indiana has been fantastic at home this year and are looking for their first win in the series since February 16, 2013.  Assembly Hall should be roaring and if the Hoosiers can continue to have James Blackmon, Jr. and Yogi Ferrell play and shoot well, this should be a thriller in Bloomington that has major implications for both teams.

Honorable Mention:

Michigan State at Michigan: Depending on your perspective, this game may not deserve to be here this week, but considering the quality of recent matchups between the two in-state rivals of the mitten state, this one deserves to make the honorable mention category, despite both teams being a bit down this year.  Michigan State won the earlier matchup this season between the two teams in overtime, but Michigan has won 3 of the last 5 and 6 of the last 10.  However, the last 5 games between these two in Ann Arbor have been within 10 points or less.  Odds are, this one should be another thriller on Tuesday night.

Michigan State at Illinois: The Spartans make this second appearance in this post with their trip to Illinois over the weekend.  The last matchup between the two ended in an Illinois win in East Lansing just a few weeks ago, but this game might have even more hanging on the line.  Both teams are projected as a low at-large seed in the NCAA Tournament and desperately need a win in this game.  With Rayvonte Rice back, the Illini will likely be a slim favorite, but KenPom currently has the Spartans projected to win 65-64 with a 50% chance of victory.  This is literally a pick-em and one that could have a lot of significance on Selection Sunday.

Season Stats

Game of the Week Appearances By Team:
  • Iowa - 4
  • Maryland - 4
  • Michigan State - 4
  • Wisconsin - 4
  • Indiana - 3
  • Illinois - 1
  • Minnesota - 1
  • Ohio State - 1
  • Purdue - 1
Game of the Week Honorable Mention Appearances By Team:
  • Ohio State - 11
  • Indiana - 6
  • Iowa - 5
  • Maryland - 5
  • Michigan - 5
  • Michigan State - 4
  • Illinois - 3
  • Purdue - 3
  • Minnesota - 1
  • Nebraska - 1
  • Rutgers - 1
  • Wisconsin - 1
Total Appearances By Team:
  • Ohio State - 12
  • Indiana - 9
  • Iowa - 9
  • Maryland - 9
  • Michigan State - 8
  • Michigan - 5
  • Wisconsin - 5
  • Illinois - 4
  • Purdue - 4
  • Minnesota - 2
  • Nebraska - 1
  • Rutgers - 1