Outlook for the rest of the B1G regular season

Submitted by Moleskyn on February 9th, 2012 at 11:58 AM

With just under a month left in the B1G basketball season, there will be 5 teams within 3 games of each other after tonight (Illinois and Indiana are both 3.5 games back and they face off tonight). So, I thought I'd break down the remaining schedule for those teams to see how things are shaping up for the B1G tourney.

Ohio (21-3, 9-2, #3 AP, #4 RPI, #1 Kenpom)
Home Record: 16-0
Away Record: 4-3

7 conference games remaining:

  • MSU (19-5, 8-3; #11 AP, #6 RPI, #5 Kenpom)
    Away record: 4-3
  • @Minnesota (17-7, 5-6; UR AP, #49 RPI, #45 Kenpom)
    Home record: 12-2
  • @UM (18-7, 8-4; #22 AP, #15 RPI, #25 Kenpom)
    Home record: 12-0
  • Illinois (16-7, 5-5; UR AP, #46 RPI, #43 Kenpom)
    Away record: 2-3
  • Wisconsin (18-6, 7-4; #21 AP, #30 RPI, #4 Kenpom)
    Away record: 5-2
  • @Northwestern (14-8, 4-6; UR AP, #37 RPI, #68 Kenpom)
    Home record: 9-3
  • @MSU
    Home record
    : 13-0

Average record of remaining opponents: 17-7, 6-5
Average AP ranking*: 33
Average RPI: 31
Average Kenpom: 32

How will they finish? I'm going to say they lose on the road to Michigan and Michigan State, but win everything else. They're obviously good enough to win out, but we've all seen how difficult it's been to win on the road in the B1G this year. 

26-5, 14-4, #1 in the B1G

Michigan State (19-5, 8-3; #11 AP, #6 RPI, #5 Kenpom)
Home record: 13-0
Away record: 4-3

7 remaining conference games:

  • @OSU (21-3, 9-2, #3 AP, #4 RPI, #1 Kenpom)
    Home record: 16-0
  • Wisconsin (18-6, 7-4; #21 AP, #30 RPI, #4 Kenpom)
    Away record: 5-2
  • @Purdue (15-9, 5-6; UR AP, #63 RPI, #32 Kenpom)
    Home record: 10-3
  • @Minnesota (17-7, 5-6; UR AP, #49 RPI, #45 Kenpom)
    Home record: 12-2
  • Nebraska (11-12, 3-9; UR AP, #109 RPI, #139 Kenpom)
    Away record: 3-5
  • @Indiana (18-6, 6-6; #23 AP, #18 RPI, #9 Kenpom)
    Home record: 13-1
  • OSU
    Away record
    : 4-3

Average record of remaining opponents: 17-7, 6-6
Average AP ranking*: 44
Average RPI: 46
Average Kenpom: 38

How will they finish? They've got tough road games against Ohio and Indiana, and tough home games against Wisconsin and Ohio. If they can go 2-2 through those 4 games, they should be able to coast to a 5-2 finish. Again though, it's tough for anybody to win on the road, so anything can happen with those games against Purdue and Minnesota.

24-7, 13-5, #2 in the B1G

 

Michigan (18-7, 8-4; #22 AP, #15 RPI, #25 Kenpom)
Home record: 12-0
Away record: 2-6

6 remaining conference games:

  • Illinois (16-7, 5-5; UR AP, #46 RPI, #43 Kenpom)
    Away record: 2-3
  • OSU (21-3, 9-2, #3 AP, #4 RPI, #1 Kenpom)
    Away record: 4-3
  • @Northwestern (14-8, 4-6; UR AP, #37 RPI, #68 Kenpom)
    Home record: 9-3
  • Purdue (15-9, 5-6; UR AP, #63 RPI, #32 Kenpom)
    Away record: 3-3
  • @Illinois
    Home record: 12-3
  • @Penn State (10-15, 2-10; UR AP, #144 RPI, #131 Kenpom)
    Home record: 8-5

Average record of remaining opponents: 15-8, 5-6
Average AP ranking*: 57
Average RPI: 59
Average Kenpom: 55

How will they finish? It's obvious that Michigan has a pretty easy schedule the rest of the way, but it still scares me a bit. Ohio's a big challenge, but I think Michigan will be able to pull it off at home. The away games against Northwestern and Illinois really scare me, too. Illinois has shown potential, and I'll say it again: it's tough to win on the road in the Big Ten. Coming off two road wins in a row will hopefully give our guys some confidence, but we'll see. I feel like Michigan could go 3-3 just as easily as they could go 6-0 the rest of the way. Since I don't think they'll win out, I'll say 5-1, with the loss coming against Illinois on the road.

23-8, 13-5, #3 in the B1G

 

Wisconsin (18-6, 7-4; #21 AP, #30 RPI, #4 Kenpom)
Home record: 11-4
Away record: 5-2

7 conference games remaining:

  • @Minnesota (17-7, 5-6; UR AP, #49 RPI, #45 Kenpom)
    Home record: 12-2
  • @MSU (19-5, 8-3; #11 AP, #6 RPI, #5 Kenpom)
    Home record: 13-0
  • Penn State (10-15, 2-10; UR AP, #144 RPI, #131 Kenpom)
    Away record:
  • @Iowa (13-11, 5-6; UR AP, #124 RPI, #99 Kenpom)
    Home record: 11-5
  • @OSU (21-3, 9-2, #3 AP, #4 RPI, #1 Kenpom)
    Home record: 16-0
  • Minnesota
    Away record: 3-4
  • Illinois (16-7, 5-5; UR AP, #46 RPI, #43 Kenpom)
    Away record: 2-3

Average record of remaining opponents: 16-8, 6-5
Average AP ranking*: 59
Average RPI: 62
Average Kenpom: 54

How will they finish? Gosh, I have no idea. I guess it depends on whether or not their recent hot streak continues. They've got 4 tough road games, and 3 of those games are against teams that they lost to at home. To me, the only sure win they have is at home against Penn State. They should be able to knock off Minnesota and Illinois at home too, but I could easily see them go 3-4 the rest of the way. That's interesting to me, because just going by average record and rankings, Wisconsin should have one of the easiest remaining schedules.

21-10, 10-8, #4 in the B1G**

 

Indiana (18-6, 6-6; #23 AP, #18 RPI, #9 Kenpom)
Home record: 13-1
Away record: 4-5

6 conference games remaining (they also have a random OOC game against North Carolina Central. I'm counting that as a meaningless win for them)

  • Illinois (16-7, 5-5; UR AP, #46 RPI, #43 Kenpom)
    Away record: 2-3
  • Northwestern (14-8, 4-6; UR AP, #37 RPI, #68 Kenpom)
    Away record: 2-5
  • @Iowa (13-11, 5-6; UR AP, #124 RPI, #99 Kenpom)
    Home record: 11-5
  • @Minnesota (17-7, 5-6; UR AP, #49 RPI, #45 Kenpom)
    Home record: 12-2
  • MSU (19-5, 8-3; #11 AP, #6 RPI, #5 Kenpom)
    Away record: 4-3
  • Purdue (15-9, 5-6; UR AP, #63 RPI, #32 Kenpom)
    Away record: 3-3

Average record of remaining opponents: 16-8, 5-5
Average AP ranking*: 53
Average RPI: 54
Average Kenpom: 49

How will they finish? This is another tough one to say. Tonight's game against Illinois will be big. The Hoosiers are coming off a good road win against Purdue, so a another win will add some wind to their sails. I'm going to say they finish off 4-2 with losses to Minnesota and MSU, but Indiana could just as easily run the table.

23-8, 10-8, #5**

*For the teams unranked in the AP, I took the average of their RPI and Kenpom ratings and plugged that number in the AP calculations. I'm sure that isn't the best way to go about it, but I need a number, and 0 doesn't work.

**How does the tiebreaker work? I went based on H2H, with Wisconsin beating Indiana on 1/26. If the tiebreaker goes to better overall record first, then Indiana would move ahead of Wisconsin.

 

Comments

jtmc33

February 9th, 2012 at 12:18 PM ^

Is it #1 through  #4 have first round byes and 5-12 play eight games in the first round (5 v. 12, 6 v. 11, etc.)?

With re-seeding in the 2nd round (lowest seeded winner of 1st round plays #1 seed, highest seeded winner of 1st round plays #4 seed)?

BursleysFinest

February 9th, 2012 at 12:20 PM ^

 

    Don't think we're gonna beat OSU, we are just not on their level this year, but 4-2 down the stretch sounds good (4-1 in the 5 non-OSU games, other loss probably coming @Illinois) 

That'll give us a 4/5 seed in the NCAA tournament (4 seed if we win a game and compete/win against whatever higher seed we play in the B1G Tourney, 5 seed otherwise)

Moleskyn

February 9th, 2012 at 12:33 PM ^

Yeah, that may be wishful thinking on my part. But it is weird how differently teams have played at home vs. on the road this year. All 3 of OSU's losses this year have come on the road. A 4-2 finish is probably more realistic, but I'm holding out for 5-1!

Sidenote: isn't it great that at this point in the season we're wondering how high of a seed we'll get, rather than wondering if we'll get into the tournament at all? It's a good feeling.

BursleysFinest

February 9th, 2012 at 12:50 PM ^

   Everyone is so excited for next season (with good reason), but with only a few truly elite teams, and a whole lot of good/really good teams, I think UM can make a big run in the Tourney this year!!!,    getting some combo of aggressive, no 3 shooting THJ and/or  36% 3 shooter THJ qualifier applies 

bigmc6000

February 9th, 2012 at 12:24 PM ^

I'd say a more likely result is 4-2. I'd like to think we beat Ohio but that would be a major upset.  I'd be just fine with 4-2 with losses to Ohio and @ Illinois.  Best case is probably 5-1, I can't see us winning @ Illinois and against Ohio without something major happening so I'm going to keep my expectations exactly at 4-2; 5-1 or 6-0 I'm extactic and dreaming about a possible Elite 8 appearance and 3-3 I'm dreaming of a Sweet 16.

oriental andrew

February 9th, 2012 at 1:33 PM ^

I think you're a bit pessimistic about Wisco.  I think they go 5-2 down the stretch. 

Michigan I could see going 5-1, except with a loss to osu and a win @ Illinois.  I think UM crushes Purdue on Senior Day. 

Moleskyn

February 9th, 2012 at 1:48 PM ^

Are you basing that on wins @Minnesota and @Iowa, on top of the 3 wins I mentioned? If so, I could definitely see that happening, but I'm a little hesitant. Minnesota and Iowa are definitely winnables games, but Wisconsin already lost at home against Iowa this year and Minnesota is still a tough team. I won't be surprised to see Wisconsin win either game, but I think the home-court advantage will swing those games in Iowa's and Minnesota's favor.

aiglick

February 9th, 2012 at 2:03 PM ^

No team can take any night off in the Big Ten. We have already had our night off @Iowa we can't afford any more. In my mind if we go 13-5 this year in the Big Ten we are at least a 4 seed maybe even better depending on the Big Ten Tournament results.

crjorgensen

February 9th, 2012 at 5:26 PM ^

I think we end up 4-2 the rest of the way (hoping for 4-2 at least). I think playing at Northwestern and at Illinois are both tough road games and we could easily lose either of those. We still aren't a very good road team so I am hoping we can win one of those because unforuntaely I think OSU just has too much talent for us to deal with. I think we keep it close with Gameday being there and it being a night game and I am sure Sullinger will get every call like usual. I don't know if this is my Michigan bias but does it Seem like Sullinger gets a foul called against him like every play? I have never seen anyone get so many calls in my life...Oh well hoping for a good finish and a 4 seed in the tourney.

I think OSU/MSU split and I think Wisconsin finishes a little better then what you have predicted. Also, I hope IU just falls aprart just because I am sick of hearing everyone in Indiana talking about how they are back.

snarling wolverine

February 9th, 2012 at 6:42 PM ^

Will this, the 15th year of the Big Ten Tournament, be the year Michigan and MSU finally meet up?  Somehow we've never played in the BTT.  If we are in fact the #3 seed and MSU #2, we'll be in line to play on the Saturday if both teams win their opening game.