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1/18 Big Ten Recap: Wisconsin Keeps Rolling

Recap all the Big Ten action from Tuesday.

NCAA Basketball: Wisconsin at Northwestern David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

The Big Ten had two intriguing games on Tuesday night with postseason implications. Maryland went on the road to face Michigan in the early game and Northwestern hosted Wisconsin, hoping to pull off the upset. Ohio State also hosted IUPUI.

Let’s take a look at what happened.

Game of the Night:

-No. 8 Wisconsin Badgers 82, Northwestern Wildcats 76

Over the last month or so, Wisconsin has arguably been the hottest team in the country. The Badgers have won seven straight, including three games against top 25 KenPom opponents. It’s been an incredible run that pushed Wisconsin squarely into the top 10 heading into the heart of the season.

All of that was put on the line on Tuesday as Wisconsin went on the road against a solid Northwestern squad. The Wildcats haven’t been as good as the Badgers, but have played a lot of teams close and recently upset Michigan State. It seemed like a key upset opportunity.

The game itself would largely live up to the billing. Wisconsin took control near the close of the first half, but it was a highly competitive game. Northwestern got great play from Chase Audige and the Badgers got 27 points and eight rebounds from Johnny Davis. Ultimately, Wisconsin would do just enough to keep Northwestern at arm’s length and grab an 82-76 road win. Wisconsin improved to 15-2 overall and 6-1 with the win, while Northwestern fell to 9-7 overall and 2-5 in Big Ten play with the loss.

Wisconsin will now set up for another marquee showdown with Michigan State at home on Friday. A win there and the Badgers could really get in good shape in the Big Ten title race. On the other side, Northwestern will hope to rebound with Purdue on the road on Sunday. It will be a tall task for the Wildcats.

The Rest:

-Michigan Wolverines 83, Maryland Terrapins 64

The last month or so has been rough for the Wolverines. Despite lofty preseason expectations, Michigan has struggled for consistent play and entered Tuesday’s matchup having lost four of the team’s last five games. Meanwhile, Maryland hoped to grab an upset win and get back on track for the postseason. The game itself would prove pretty one-sided, as Michigan lead by double-digits for most of the matchup and won by 19 points.

Michigan improved to 8-7 overall and 2-3 in Big Ten play with the win, while Maryland fell to 9-9 overall and 1-6 in Big Ten play. It was a pivotal win for the Wolverines as it kept the program’s postseason hopes alive. Michigan still has a ton of work to do to hear its name called on Selection Sunday, but these are the types of games it has to win to have a chance. Michigan will now prepare for a tricky road game against Indiana on Sunday while Maryland will return to action on Friday at home against Illinois.

-No. 19 Ohio State Buckeyes 83, IUPUI Jaguars 37

This was a makeup game due to Ohio State’s COVID-19 pause and came with little intrigue. IUPUI is one of the nation’s worst teams and looked that way on Tuesday night, losing by more than 40 points on the road against the Buckeyes. EJ Liddell finished with 13 points, 10 rebounds, and three assists. Ohio State will return to action on Saturday at home against Nebraska. Expect another win.