Saturday was a busy day in Big Ten, but the stellar play continued. 13 teams were in action and 12 came away with wins. Iowa is the only team that suffered a tough loss.
Big Ten Game of the Day:
-Maryland 71, Oklahoma State, 70
Maryland moved to 6-0 in games decided by 6 points or less with a win against Oklahoma on Saturday. After not having a lead for over 30 minutes of the game and being down 43-35 at the half, it was Melo Trimble’s two free throws in the final seconds that gave the Terps the win.
Maryland had a hard time shooting the ball from deep. They were 4-22 from beyond the arc, shooting 18%. The free throw line was also an issue for the Terrapins. They shot 19-29 or 66%. Oklahoma out-rebounded Maryland 44-39. The Terrapins have work to do, but they’re showing stellar play in close games. That will be key for them in conference play.
-No. 17 Wisconsin 90, Oklahoma 70
After being down 40-37 at the half, Wisconsin came from behind to win 90-70. The Sooners won the three-point shooting battle in the first half. Wisconsin shot 30% from behind the arc in the first half compared to Oklahoma’s 63%. But then the tides turned. In the second half, it was the Badgers shooting 57% from beyond the arc and the Sooners shooting 17%.
Nigel Hayes was a star on the floor for the Badgers. He had 28 points and 6 assists on the night in 37 minutes of play.
-Michigan 82, Kennesaw State 55
The Wolverines cruised passed Kennesaw State behind stellar performances from Moritz Wagner and DJ Wilson. DJ Wilson had a double-double with 15 points and 11 rebounds. Wagner scored 20 points and was impressive in the field. He was 7-8 in the paint and 3-4 from three.
Abdur-Rahkman was the only starter not in double figures for the Wolverines. He didn’t score any points on 0-6 shooting in 22 minutes. However, on a day when Wilson and Wagner were clicking on offense, the Wolverines managed fine without his scoring.
-Nebraska 71, South Dakota 63
Tim Miles and his squad tallied their fifth win of the season by holding of South Dakota. All starters scored in double figures, lead by Jack McVeigh with 16. Tim Miles has a young team but Tai Webster is starting to form in to his leadership role at guard. Last season, he averaged 10.1 points per game. This season, he’s averaging 16.9. The Huskers will continue to need him to be efficient on the floor as they prepare for Creighton Wednesday.
-Purdue 90, Morehead State 56
Carsen Edwards started in place of Vince Edwards and it paid dividends for the Boilermakers. They were able to get off to a fast start and cruised past Morehead State. Caleb Swanigan was one rebound shy of a double-double. He finished with 13 points and 9 rebounds on the day. He also lead the Boilermakers in scoring. This was a nice bounce-back win for the Boilermakers after a tough loss to Louisville.
-Omaha 98, Iowa 89
Should we hit the panic button? Iowa was favored by 9 entering in to this game. It is clear the Hawkeyes are having a hard time filling the void of the seniors that left. Peter Jok continues to impress and be a light for Iowa. He had a double-double, scoring 33 points and 10 rebounds. Jok has put the team on his back this season and continues to fight in every game.
-Illinois 64, VCU 46
John Groce and his team picked up a nice win on Saturday against VCU. Malcolm Hill continues to impress this season. He had 16 points on the night. Leron Black scored a career high 18 points and 8 rebounds to help lead the Illini to victory. The Illini started cold from the field but were able to overcome it and take a 10 point lead at halftime. The defense impressed for Illinois and gave them crucial stops when they were needed.
-Michigan State 80, Oral Roberts 76
Michigan State is without Miles Bridges and that was evident today. The Spartans barely slid past a 1-5 Oral Roberts team. Miles was missed on the defensive and offensive end. Nick Ward scored 24 points in 26 minutes of play for the Spartans to help lead them to the win. Michigan State was favored by 21 points heading in to this game, but it is clear with injuries and a young team, Tom Izzo and his team are facing a tough stretch in East Lansing.
-Ohio State 70, Fairleigh Dickinson 62
Ohio State had a tough time putting away a 2-5 Fairleigh Dickinson team at home. Marc Loving lead the Buckeyes in scoring with 18 points. Trevor Thompson gave the Buckeyes a nice lift of of the bench with 10 points. Ohio State is shooting more in the paint instead of relying on the deep ball and it is paying dividends. They’re getting to the foul line more and the added points are helping them.
-Penn State 72, Wright State 50
The Nittany Lions have been all over the place this season, but they picked up a solid win yesterday. Tony Carr’s offensive struggles continued as he only scored 3 points on the day. However Shep Garner had 17, Peyton Banks had 15 and Lamar Stevens had 12 to help push the Nittany Lions to a win. Josh Reaves gave the Nittany Lions a nice boost off the bench with 12 points on 3-6 shooting.
-Rutgers 72, Morgan State 58
Rutgers won seven games all of last season and just won their seventh of the season last night. They’ve started to turn around and take advantage in non-conference play. On a night when Corey Sanders only scored 4 points and went 1-8 from the field, other players stepped up. Deshawn Freeman scored 22 points and collected 12 rebounds in the win.
-Minnesota 56, Vanderbilt 52
Minnesota continues to impress this season. The Golden Gophers earned another resume win with a victory over Vanderbilt. Jordan Murphy lead the Gophers with 16 points on 8-17 shooting. Freshman guard Amir Coffey struggled on the floor but added 9 points and went 3-4 from the line.
-Northwestern 80, DePaul 64
Northwestern used its fast start to pull past DePaul. Redshirt Senior Sanjay Lumpkin got the ‘cats off to a hot start. He had 11 points in the first half and scored in double figures for the third time this season. Collins has talked about Lumpkin becoming more of an offensive threat and he did just that for the second straight game. Scottie Lindsey lead the Wildcats in scoring with 19 points. He shot 7-16 from the paint and 5-8 from three.
Gavin Skelly recorded his third double-digit scoring game in a row. He had 15 points on 5-7 shooting in the paint. He missed the only shot from three that he took. Barret Benson earned the start at Center for an injured Dererk Pardon and he scored the first points for the Wildcats in the post. He had 5 points and 3 rebounds in 20 minutes of play. Northwestern improves to 6-2 and 5-0 at home.
The Big Ten showed their strength as a conference on Saturday. They continue to win close games and teams that struggled last year, like Rutgers, Minnesota and Illinois, are starting to impress. This non-conference slate is showing that the Big Ten will be competitive heading in to conference play.