Sunday features the final three games of the Big Ten regular season. While the majority of the conference has already wrapped up their work, these final matchups will determine the alignment of the Big Ten tournament field in Chicago. Who has the edge and who could surprise? Details to follow.
Game of the Day
#6 Wisconsin Badgers @ #23 Ohio State Buckeyes - 1:00 ET (CBS)
When choosing Sunday's headliner, its a no-brainer. Having already clinched the regular season conference title, Wisconsin (27-3, 15-2) will fight Sunday to retain their projected #2 seed in the NCAA tournament. After dropping a tough one on the road to Maryland, the Badgers have regrouped nicely, snagging wins over Michigan State and Minnesota. They'll look to continue their success when they travel to Columbus to face the Buckeyes.
Ohio State (22-8, 11-6) has bobbed in and out of the AP polls all year, but enter this matchup ranked #23 in the nation. D'Angelo Russell has taken the nation by storm, and many experts regard him as a top three pick in the upcoming NBA draft. He leads the Buckeyes into a matchup that presents a huge opportunity for his team to gain an upper hand going into the postseason. Currently projected as a #7 seed, Thad Matta and company would welcome the possibility of a higher placement in the bracket.
The main issue this game presents for Wisconsin is that its on the road. Two of the Badgers' three losses this year have come away from the Kohl Center, including their most recent one to the Terrapins. A solid all-around team like Ohio State can be dangerous, especially when backed by a crowd of 18,000. The two main battles to look for will be in the front court and at the point. Everybody and their mother knows that Big Frank means business and has solidified that claim due to his Wooden Award finalist status. He will face up against Ohio State's Amir Williams, a 6-11 senior averaging 1.7 blocks per game. While Williams is by no means a weak player, Kaminsky easily gets the edge in this matchup due to superior scoring ability. The Badgers should be looking down low as always.
The second matchup to look at is at the point guard position. Either Josh Gasser or Bronson Koenig will be tasked with containing Russell. Considering the freshman has dropped 28 points in each of his last two games, this is far from easy. Look for Bo Ryan to call for a double team to tangle up Russell and force other Buckeyes to make shots. Ohio State has a plethora of scoring options however, so it should get interesting. Overall, this should be a classic Big Ten game between to very strong teams. Tune in.
Penn State Nittany Lions @ Minnesota Golden Gophers - 1:00 ET (BTN)
Penn State and Minnesota close out their disappointing 2014-2015 regular season campaigns when they matchup in Minneapolis. Penn State won the previous matchup this season, beating the Gophers 63-58 in Happy Valley. The Nittany Lions' D.J. Newbill is closing out a stellar career at PSU and is averaging 20.3 PPG on the season. The Gophers will be honoring seniors Maurice Walker, Andre Hollins and DeAndre Mathieu as they wrap up their careers at Minnesota. This should be an emotional game for them as Minnesota tries for its 18th win of the season.
#10 Maryland Terrapins @ Nebraska Cornhuskers - 7:30 ET (BTN)
The Terps look to wrap up a phenomenal first season in the Big Ten at Nebraska Sunday. Maryland (25-5, 13-4) is currently seeded as a #3 in March Madness and will try to retain their status in the eyes of the selection committee. Look for Dez Wells on Terran Petteway to see who can play the better game. Petteway is playing his last game at home as a Husker and will likely be fired up. After getting locked out by Tim Miles, this is the type of win that could change things. Don't be surprised to see a Husker fight.