Amidst some more tumultuous circumstances surrounding the the Wisconsin basketball program last week, the Badgers were able to split their games.
The Big Ten across the board saw mayhem abound, which is highlighted with two new teams atop the rankings for the first time.
Lets rundown the updated Big Ten Power Rankings to check-in with where each team stands in the conference after another week of play.
(Here are last week’s Power Rankings)
1) Maryland Terrapins (19-4 overall, 9-3 B1G, last week: 3rd)
The Terrapins continue to play extremely well, winning six straight. A key victory over Illinois on the road headlined their week, and helps them catapult to the top of the Power Rankings. A Valentines Day date with Michigan State will be crucial, but they are the most consistent team in the conference currently.
2) Penn State Nittany Lions (18-5 overall, 8-4 B1G, last week: 6th)
Penn State has been a steady climber over the past two weeks, culminating in their new home at No. 2 in the Power Rankings this week. Lamar Stevens has been playing out of his mind, and has led Penn State to six straight wins.
The Nittany Lions went into Michigan State and won a huge road game, knocking the Spartans down a few notches.
3) Illinois Fighting Illini (16-7 overall, 8-4 B1G, last week: 2nd)
The Fighting Illini fell a spot after losing their only game of the week against Maryland on the road. Illinois has been one of the bigger surprises in the league, but a tough match up with Michigan State is on the docket Tuesday. Can they keep a length ahead of the Spartans?
4) Michigan State Spartans (16-8 overall, 8-5 B1G, last week: 1st)
A drastic fall is fitting this week, as Michigan State has lost three straight games. Road losses to Wisconsin and Michigan, and a home loss to Penn State have the Spartans reeling a bit. Major opportunities for redemption loom ahead with games against Illinois and Maryland this week. If Michigan State wants to have a chance at a conference title, they will need to rebound mentally and physically.
5) Iowa Hawkeyes (17-7 overall, 8-5 B1G, last week: 4th)
Iowa is like much of the conference with their home-road splits. The Hawkeyes were absolutely smacked by Purdue on the road, and returned the favor against Nebraska a few days later at home. A pair of road games highlight their games this week, can they kick their road woes?
6) Rutgers Scarlet Knights (17-7 overall, 8-5 B1G, last week: 5th)
Rutgers got back in the winning column with a narrow win over Northwestern after losing a pair of games prior. Tied with Iowa and Michigan State in the standings, they are still within striking distance for a conference championship.
Big contests at Ohio State and home against Illinois are ahead on the schedule. If they want to keep pace, these two games are must wins.
7) Purdue Boilermakers (14-10 overall, 7-6 B1G, last week: 9th)
Among the shake ups from last week, Purdue rose two spots in the rankings after sweeping their games. Purdue takes a slight edge over Wisconsin thanks to head-to-head, despite having the exact same record. The Boilermakers have won three straight, including two big road wins.
8) Wisconsin Badgers (14-10 overall, 7-6 B1G, last week: 7th)
After splitting their games, the Badgers fell one spot in the Power Rankings. The Badgers will need to figure out their road game struggles this week, as their only game on tap is at Nebraska in a must win. Wisconsin has been exceptional during weekend games, can they keep that going?
9) Minnesota Golden Gophers (11-10 overall, 6-7 B1G, last week: 10th)
Even though they have a worse overall record, Minnesota gets the nod over Ohio State and Indiana due to head-to-head. The Gophers have been playing better basketball thanks to the emergence of Daniel Oturu this year, but they have also lost three of their last four.
10) Ohio State Buckeyes (15-8 overall, 5-7 B1G, last week: 11th)
The Buckeyes are coming off a loss to Wisconsin on Sunday, but had won their previous three games. Ohio State still has a chance to bolster their resume to make the NCAA Tournament, but home games against Rutgers and Purdue this week are almost necessary at this juncture.
11) Michigan Wolverines (14-9 overall, 5-7 B1G, last week: 12th)
Michigan has finally moved themselves off of twelfth place after multiple weeks in the doghouse. A huge win over Michigan State this week gives them some hope to potentially be a tournament team as well, but they will need to snag a few wins this week to keep the positive momentum going.
12) Indiana Hoosiers (15-8 overall, 5-7 B1G, last week: 8th)
Four straight losses have plagued the Hoosiers, and set them tumbling down the Power Rankings for the second consecutive week. Indiana welcomes Iowa this week, in a game that could really help them turn around the ship.
Things are still incredibly bleak for the Nebraska Cornhuskers and Northwestern Wildcats. Neither team has been able to get anything going in conference play. Both teams are firmly outside of contention, and for that they are outside of the rankings altogether.