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Where Will The Good Wins Come From: 12/4 Advanced Statistics Check-In

After a dismal showing in the ACC-Big Ten Challenge, signature wins will we hard to come by

Oct 19, 2017; New York, NY, USA;  Michigan  head coach John Beilein during 2017 Big Ten men's basketball media day at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports

So, uh, the Challenge didn’t go well.

In fact, it went as badly as it has ever gone for the Big Ten.

Maryland is a secret ACC double agent, so I expect them to lose every year. As for everybody else, yikes.

If you’re a bubble team this year, not only did you fail to secure a good out-of-conference win, you’re now looking at the league wondering how you can build your resume in a conference full of, let’s admit it, a lot more mediocrity than we all expected.

The Selection Committee looks at top-50 and top-100 wins. Those are criteria that KenPom tracks, with adjustments to take into account that away games are harder to win. They’re called Tier A and Tier B games.

Who in the Big Ten can provide a Tier A or a Tier B win? And how many Tier A and Tier B wins are sill available out of conference? Let’s find out.

Tier A Conference Games

  • Michigan State (Home and away)
  • Purdue (Home and away)
  • Minnesota (Home and away)
  • Penn State (Away)
  • Michigan (Away)
  • Maryland (Away)
  • Wisconsin (Away)
  • Ohio State (Away)
  • Northwestern (Away)

Tier B Conference Games

  • Penn State (Home)
  • Michigan (Home)
  • Maryland (Home)
  • Wisconsin (Home)
  • Ohio State (Home)
  • Northwestern (Home)
  • Indiana (Away)
  • Rutgers (Away)
  • Iowa (Away)
  • Nebraska (Away)
  • Illinois (Away)

The only games in the conference that aren’t Tier A or Tier B are home games against Rutgers, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, and Nebraska. These games should be considered must-wins if your team wants to go dancing this year.

Remaining Non-Conference Tier A Games

  • Michigan @ Texas
  • Northwestern @ Oklahoma
  • Ohio State @ North Carolina
  • Minnesota @ Arkansas
  • Nebraska @ Creighton
  • Kansas @ Nebraska
  • Seton Hall @ Rutgers
  • Wisconsin @ Temple
  • Iowa @ Iowa State
  • Indiana @ Louisville
  • Indiana vs. Notre Dame

Remaining Non-Conference Tier B Games

  • Purdue vs. Butler
  • UCLA @ Michigan
  • Northwestern @ DePaul
  • Illinois vs. UNLV
  • Illinois vs. Missouri

All you can do is win the games in front of you, but for those teams still searching for signature wins (which is most of the Big Ten), you’re most likely going to have to win road games to get them. The only Tier A home games on the schedule are Purdue, Michigan State, Minnesota, Kansas (if you’re Nebraska), and Seton Hall (if you’re Rutgers). This may be the darkest Selection Sunday the league has seen in awhile.