Another exciting and excellent weekend of conference play and it seems like fans are finally starting to get a clear picture on how the Big Ten title race and the conference standings will sort out. There's still a tie at the top of the standings, but with some huge matchups this week, expect that to change soon.
With that, let's take a look at the Big Ten Tournament bracket.
The concept of the bracket is pretty simple. Each time, BTP will breakdown how the Big Ten Tournament projects as of that moment. For instance, today's bracket will be set as of the night of Sunday, January 24, 2016. I have taken the liberty of looking at the Big Ten records and using the Big Ten tiebreaker scenarios to see where teams will land. Things will certainly move, but it is still interesting to see as of this moment. Let's take a look.
2016 Big Ten Tournament Bracket (1/24):
As I said on Friday, this was the weekend when I expected things to finally settle out. It's still a tight race overall, but we finally have some groups emerging. On Friday, there were nine teams tied with at least one other team in the standings, but as of today, that number dropped to just six. Plus, with more head-to-head results, the tiebreakers in those situations are a lot clearer. Expect that to continue this week.
At the top, there really wasn't any significant changes. Iowa and Indiana stayed undefeated and Maryland hung in at No. 3 in the standings. However, the Wolverines are starting to surge upward and with a manageable upcoming schedule, Michigan could be set to move even higher. This week, with Iowa traveling to Maryland, there could finally be some real movement at the top.
The middle group remains really interesting. There wasn't a ton of movement, but with Northwestern fading and Wisconsin starting to find its pace, perhaps things are starting to sort out. Michigan State was able to move up thanks to its win on Saturday, but there's still a long way for the Spartans to go to get anywhere close to the top.
At the bottom, it's still going to be quite a battle to try and get that No. 10 spot. With Northwestern getting Michigan State at home and Iowa on the road this week, there might be an opportunity for the lower seeded teams.
We'll have to see how next week impacts things, but it looks like an exciting race in the Big Ten.