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

BTPowerhouse looks at the best games of the upcoming week in the Big Ten.

Marc Lebryk-USA TODAY Sports

Last week saw a flurry of action across the conference and several marquee games. It also saw some intriguing games among some of the lower teams in the Big Ten and a few games that were nearly upsets. Now, with less than a month until Selection Sunday, the pressure is rising with another great slate of games on the way.

With that, let's take a look at the top games of the week.

Game Of The Week:

Purdue Boilermakers at Indiana Hoosiers:

Needless to say, this game needs no introduction. The best overall rivalry in the Big Ten will tip-off on Saturday night for the lone time this season and the stakes are sky high. Both teams are fighting for seeding in the Big Ten Tournament and the Hoosiers are hoping a big rivalry win can propel the team to a Big Ten title.

For Purdue, this is the type of game that can drastically reshape this season. So far, the Boilermakers have had a really solid year, but it hasn't quite had the splash that many were hoping to see. After all, the Big Ten title looks out of the picture and a top four seed in Indianapolis seems to be fading. However, if the team can score a huge road rivalry win, it would be a huge feather in the cap.

On the other side, Indiana is in a dogfight at the top of the Big Ten standings and can't afford another loss. Keeping pace with Iowa is already going to be difficult and if the Hoosiers drop a game at home, it would be even tougher. Plus, Indiana hasn't exactly had a lot of success in this rivalry recently. Before tip-off on Saturday, it will have been nearly 1,100 days since Indiana beat Purdue.

The matchup to watch in this game will be on the wing. That's not usually the thing to watch in a game with Purdue, but based on the teams, that looks to be the case. Purdue will have to hope that Vince Edwards and Caleb Swanigan can show up big against OG Anunoby, Collin Hartman, and Robert Johnson.

Honorable Mention:

- Michigan Wolverines at Maryland Terrapins:

This is a game that's gotten a bit overshadowed in recent weeks, but still looks like a good one on Sunday. Both teams are currently in the top segment of the Big Ten and each has a lot riding on the outcome. Michigan is looking to secure its NCAA Tournament bid and Maryland wants to keep pace with Indiana and Iowa in the Big Ten title race. Plus, the Terps will be looking for revenge after losing to Michigan earlier this year.

The matchup to watch in this game will come in the backcourt between Maryland's Melo Trimble and Rasheed Sulaimon and Michigan's Derrick Walton, Jr. and Caris LeVert. It's unknown if LeVert will be back to full strength by Sunday, but if so, the Wolverines could have a big chance to come out on top.

- Wisconsin Badgers at Michigan State Spartans:

In most other weeks, this game would probably earn Game of the Week honors and for good reason. Both teams are playing red hot - combined they have won 12 of the last 13 games - and each has a lot riding on the outcome. Wisconsin is looking to secure an NCAA Tournament bid and Michigan State is looking for revenge after narrowing losing on the road in Madison earlier this season.

A particularly interesting matchup to watch is going to be upfront between Michigan State's Matt Costello and Deyonta Davis and Wisconsin's Vitto Brown and Ethan Happ. Both groups have been playing really well over the last few weeks and it could very well determine the outcome.

Worst Game of the Week:

- Rutgers Scarlet Knights at Illinois Fighting Illini:

We just added this category last week and luckily, the Big Ten once again has a terrible game on the slate that fits right into this category. Both Illinois and Rutgers have been incredibly underwhelming this season and will be facing off on Tuesday night. Add in that the first game went to triple overtime and the horror of this one may never end.

Along with this, Rutgers announced that it suspended freshman guard Corey Sanders for four games earlier this week, who was one of the lone bright spots in the first matchup. Needless to say, with two teams with a combined 3-21 record in Big Ten play facing off and one of the teams without its best player, this game fits the bill.

Season Stats:

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