On a night in the Big Ten where more than likely only one of the four teams in action are going to make the NCAA Tournament, you really have to look into the games and think of the possibility of a trap game being played. Tonight Wisconsin travels out east to take on Penn State, and Minnesota hosts Northwestern.
Game of the Night:
Wisconsin (23-2, 11-1) at Penn State (15-11, 3-10) 7:00ET on BTN
If it looks like an easy victory in the Big Ten on the road, then it most likely is going to be a lot closer than the average fan is thinking. Wisconsin is the clear favorite heading into tonight's game against the Nittany Lions and there are plenty of reasons backing that up. One being they are the dominant dog inside the conference having only one loss in Big Ten play coming on the road at Rutgers, who might be the worst team in conference (albeit it without Frank Kaminsky and Traevon Jackson). However, on Wednesday, Wisconsin will be playing on the road against a Penn State team that is high powered by their scoring machine D.J Newbill (20.8 ppg) who could cause problems at the guard position without Jackson in the game. This will be a great test for Bo Ryan's team to play against one of the best scoring guards in the nation. Josh Gasser is fully capable of stepping up to the challenge, as he always is when it comes to defending the opposition's best player.
Penn State will need more than just Newbill to help out if they expect to pull of one of the bigger upsets of this season. The Nittany Lions are coming off another single digit loss against a quality opponent after losing to Maryland 76-73 on Saturday and it was their 9th single digit loss of the season. Penn State will need to take full advantage of their home crowd, keep it close, and find another player to score to help balance out the attack of Newbill.
Northwestern (11-14, 1-10) at Minnesota (16-10, 5-8) 9:00ET on BTN
Northwestern is coming of their biggest win of the season, and in fact their only win of the 2015 year on Sunday after they defeated Iowa in overtime 66-61. On the other side of this match up sits a Minnesota team that looked to be gaining some momentum until they forgot to stop Indiana from knocking down a program record 18 threes against them that resulted in a 90-71 loss. The Gophers must win out this year in my opinion, as well as make a deep run in the conference tournament in Chicago if they want any chance of grabbing a bubble spot. The good news for them is they get to start off hosting a Northwestern team that has struggled mightily on the road this season in Big Ten play only winning at Rutgers. For the Gophers to have any shot at a post season run tonight must start it off with a blowout win against the Wildcats.