Podcast: Dissecting MSU’s debacle in Evanston, plus the first Big Ten power ranking of the year


Dylan channeled the fury of UMHoops message board posters with all the MSU simping from Brendan. :joy:


I know MSU will be better than they were yesterday, but I really really don’t see how Quinn still has them that high in the ranking. It could happen I guess, but I don’t think the pieces are there this year.

Izzo can be so over-the-top critical when he knows the local media will eat it up and carry his water

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This was a very heated episode in general. When Brandon was like “That’s BS and you know it” about Dylan saying he was a Rutgers hater I was like wow this is intense. I know they don’t actually dislike each other, but I think the bickering adds a nice amount of intrigue to the podcast. This is my first season listening regularly (If posted elsewhere I would catch some scattered episodes), but I think the dynamic between analytic minded website owner vs. story driven beat writer is crazy dramatic.


Some of that stuff was weird like “if it was OSU there wouldn’t be rage” well that’s kind of the point. MSU would win by 10 today because they would be pissed?? Well they played yesterday and not today. Unfortunately Izzo has local and national media eating out of his hand.

Dylan- love that you didn’t let Quinn off the hook with his ridiculous MSU ranking.

Non-conference aside, do you find yourself rooting for or against MSU?

I realize we have some questions still to answer and haven’t played anybody considered “great” but I feel like for the first time in years the offense is so efficient. We have 5 guys on the court, at all times, that can put the ball in the basket. Franz and Livers will get theirs. Maybe Hunter regresses somewhat but this team has the feel of a contender - big ten and nationally.

I don’t really root for/against Michigan State, but I do watch more of their games more closely given that I have to pod about them.

I just think it is too early to jump to any wild conclusions about Michigan’s offense given the schedule. I don’t think U-M has any glaring issues right now but it hasn’t faced an NCAA Tournament team so it is a bit early to start celebrating that the offense is going to be more efficient than it has been in years.

Not saying it can’t be, just don’t think it’s a guarantee because of how U-M has played up til now.

Much like some of the advanced stat websites, Brenden hasn’t yet removed preseason metrics from his rankings. :slight_smile:

Seriously, Iowa at #2 with a defense that’s somewhere between 80-130? MSU at #4 after getting blown out by Northwestern? I think the issue with this pod when dusting off the “power ranking draft” feature, was that they didn’t align on whether they were ranking them on where they are today or where they expect them to finish. BQ still thinks MSU is going to finish more like we originally thought and that Rutgers is going to come back to earth.

Still really tough when every team has only played 1-2 conference games.

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2014 Michigan won the big ten by 3 games with the 89th best defense

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1. Wisconsin (annoying system program being run by 24-year olds)
2. Rutgers (shocked at how good Harper is)
3. Iowa (still skeptical, but no one ready to pass yet)
4. Illinois (really hard to figure them out…)
5. Indiana (TJD is elite…guards?)
6. Michigan (total wild card with weak schedule)
7. MSU (worse than the sum of their parts)
8. OSU (no bigs and can they shoot?)
9. Purdue (can Williams stay on the floor enough?)
10. Northwestern (we’ll see if Sunday was a fluke)
11. Penn State (try hard team that just doesn’t have enough scoring)
12. Minnesota (coached by Richard Pitino)
13. Maryland (massive step back from last few years)
14. Nebraska (feels like they are turning over their roster mid season)


Totally reasonable IMO. I would flip Indiana and MSU personally but that’s more about benefit of the doubt than how the teams have looked.

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So the consensus here is that MSU is now a tier 2 or 3 B1G team? No chance I’m putting Indiana above them on my revised predictions lol


I’m very surprised Dylan is already back on Archie island.


I think it is way too early to know the tiers for sure. I think Tier #1 right now is Wisconsin by themselves…maybe just with Rutgers too based on current resume. Then there’s a huge group of teams that we’re trying to figure out. I tend to agree with Dylan about Iowa’s defense…but I do still think their elite offense is going to keep them from falling too far in this list. The B10 coaches tend to figure each other out as the season goes on…but even Gonzaga allowed Iowa to score almost 90 points and there were a couple moments late where it could have become a game.

haha BQ was in some mooooooood. :rofl:


Gonna be interesting to read this. BQ is a good reporter, but he does seem to have a blind spot re MSU’s challenges, or what mix of ingredients really need to be there for Izzo Magic. I think some of that could be explained by wanting to cover a contender through to a championship last year, and probably having a very legit appreciation for Winston. Maybe that obscured some obvious problems with last year’s roster (that a careful reader of this forum can learn about if they so choose).


I would flip MSU and Indiana in my opinion. Maybe even have UM at 5, MSU 6, Indiana 7. I’m not ready to give up much on MSU, they always seem to turn it around with Izzo. I’m also not too high on Indiana but obviously it’s worth noting the high quality of teams they have played.

I will say though with Penn State… they may not have much scoring or even a ton of talent overall, but they grind and try hard and I fully expect them to have some upsets in the Big Ten. I think they’re gonna make most of their opponents really earn it.


I’d agree with this pretty spot on. I could hear arguments for Illinois over Iowa, or various orderings of 8-12 (I’d probably swap Minnesota and NW), but besides that it seems pretty good to me.

Wisconsin is who we thought they were, so I’d keep them at 1. Rutgers has obviously gone up, and Illinois despite the record is still a clear top 3/4 team IMO. For me Iowa is also who we thought they were, but for pretty much all of us that was a top 4 team preseason. Rutgers is better than what we thought but MSU is a little worse so I don’t see why I’d love Iowa outside the top 4.

Like I said the rest of agree with. The only other point I’d make is a hard sell on Indiana. Dylan said PSU is a little overrated in the computer rankings because they’ve played a tough schedule and Indiana is the same to me. They got destroyed by Texas, the only top 25 team they’ve played, and they’re being held up by wins over Providence and Stanford (do any of us think they’ll be any more than bubble teams?). In their last game they struggled with a Butler team that didn’t have their starting PG and just lost to Southern Illinois. TJD is amazing, but we knew that coming into the year. The rest of their team is what we thought, great defensively but a slog on offensive. Franklin has been a great shooter and Phinisiee has improved, by Durham has regressed so this team still has 2 people who can shoot the ball. The guard play, especially at PG is still bad and will be in the B1G. I think they’re improved from last year, and will be a solid tourney team vs them being a bubble team last year, but trying to sell them as anywhere above 7 in the B1G to me is a hard sell.

Edit: Forgot Indiana played FSU and almost won that. A good result but for them to be top half I’d like to see them win those games.

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I want to say Illinois is better…but the reality is that they have three losses and have been erratic. While Dylan hates Iowa for good reasons, they’ve looked totally dominant except for a neutral site loss to the #1 team in the country. I think their arrow is headed down and Illinois is headed up…but I also think a lot of what excited us about Illinois so far is the same trap we fell into with MSU - beating Duke. Illinois has lost their other three games against ranked teams and a 2-point win at home to Ohio. Really hard to justify them any higher based purely on beating a mediocre Duke team.

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