IMO playing the Jan 1 game against Maryland can be looked at as their second Holiday season B1G machup.
That’s a good point. There are three Big Ten games on Jan. 1 and OSU, NW, Michigan, Iowa only play one December game. Maryland and PSU play the two Dec. games plus Jan 1.
Remember that Michigan also plays UNC late in December – which probably makes scheduling around finals even more problematic with the UK trip.
The conference does feel really wide open. I don’t get the Indiana hype. They have the same core that barely made the tourney last year. Does the Big Ten get a top 3 seed in the tourney? Probably not. Feels like another year with 3-4 bubble teams and 3-4 teams seeded 4-8.
Returning an entire core is not really a bad thing. Continuity and natural growth is usually good for slight improvement even without any additions. They add two top 30 recruits that should push for rotation minutes.
I don’t think they are a clear favorite but it’s pretty easy to click the Over when comparing them to last years team.
Also, when’s the last time the Big Ten didn’t have a 3 seed or higher? It’s been awhile. 2016/17 I believe?
Seems like flying 8 hours and six time zones to play a game against a team that’s normally a 90 minute flight away in front of a populace that doesn’t give a rip about basketball, forcing you to compress the part of the schedule that matters most isn’t worth it.
Regarding Indiana…I mean, returning a core is good if the core is good. Their core is “fine”.
Yeah, I think Indiana should make the NCAA Tourney (not the first four), I just think another team is more likely to win the league.
The main reason IU is being picked where they are though is because it is hard to pick the team that should win. So I get that.
I would say playing UK in London is a great idea. Obviously not an every year thing but as a one off I think it’s a great thing. Even if UK gets out of the home and home.
Are you talking about the Minnesota game being compressed? I don’t think that’s a big deal in the scheme of things.
The rest of the schedule is every week, but a lot of teams are on that cadence so not a huge deal IMO.
I just think their problem was their offense - not shooting particularly well, and not really valuing the ball. I don’t know if a Xavier Johnson helmed team will ever rock in to%, and if the same three guys lead the team in usage (not unreasonable?) the hotshot freshmen are probably just helping on the margins. TJD and Race have each gotten marginally more efficient as scorers each year, maybe they can tick it up again, but I’m not sure it’s enough.
Anyway, I agree, they’re a tournament team, and probably 3rd or 4th in conference?
Yeah I think even when there has been a dominant favorite preseason the field has won the conference over half the time. I don’t think there’s a single year I wouldn’t take the field at even money.
I think they’re more likely to finish 3/4 than 1, but so is probably any other single team you’d pick to win the conference at this point.
That’s a different argument though. We are talking about where they should be picked. I think we all agree that the preseason pick doesn’t always win the league.
I just don’t really like IU as a preseason pick to win the league. Mostly because IU wasn’t a good team last year. And even IU’s good/best players I don’t lose as far as style/archetype/consistency.
I get that you like IU though, we don’t have to clog up every thread with a debate about it. There’s a fair case to like them in the preseason if that’s what you like in a team. They are going to be the preseason pick I would say just not mine.
As far as the schedule goes, I don’t look at Indiana as an insurmountable challenge at this point. And the reality is there probably isn’t a team on that level right now. Is at Rutgers tougher than at Illinois? I’m not even sure. Home against Indiana or home against Iowa? I don’t think there’s much separation.
I don’t like Indiana as a pick to win the league, either. My point is I don’t really like anyone as a pick to win the league because it’s probably going to be wrong lol.
You will probably get those games on BTN since the NFL has a full slate that day.
This is just a bad faith argument though. We can discuss who we would pick to win the league (and the merits of those picks) while understanding that they might not win the league.
No, it’s in good faith.
Michigan State will win the B1G with a 20-0 conference record.
That’s in little faith
You guys I hate to say it.
It’s Iowa’s year
Iowa’s defense and coaching under Fran has not been good enough to win more than one game in the big dance, let alone the big ten…