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B5Q Blogopean Union: trying to think about anything other than Caleb Williams in cardinal and white

Plus: the women’s hockey team is ranked below second for the first time in years; Cole Van Lanen signs a deal with the Packers; and Ben Street is an Olympian.

NCAA Mens Hockey - Frozen Four - Semifinals - Wisconsin vs Maine
Ben Street, seen here scoring in the Frozen Four, is a Canadian Olympian now!
Photo by G. N. Lowrance/Getty Images

Good morning! This is going to be a daily(ish) post that discusses the goings on of the rest of the Big Ten Conference, and the country as needed. Much like the European Union, the Big Ten is a loosely confederated group of entities that sometimes have the same goals (like free movement of people between countries or not winning national titles in football or basketball) and sometimes accept new members that they later regret (Estonia or Nebraska).

We hope that you will use this post to comment on things happening around the conference and also as a sort of daily open thread to discuss breaking news or argue about Spotted Cow (which we NO LONGER DO).

  • Wisconsin track and field teams are ranked highly in the region after the first rankings release of the year.
  • Don’t 100% know what a “futures contract” is, but this sounds good for Green Bay native Cole Van Lanen. (If you want to learn what a futures contract is, here’s a good link, but it’s basically an offseason practice squad contract so teams can start building up their 90-man roster before training camp.)
  • Another Badger will be in Beijing for the Olympics. Congratulations to Ben Street for keeping UW’s streak (since 1976) of having a men’s hockey player in the Olympics alive!
  • Badgers legend Sydney Hilley will be continuing her volleyball career overseas in Istanbul. The announcement from the official VakıfBank Sports Club team account says that she will “temporarily attend our training to create time for Cansu Ozbay’s recovery process and to maintain our high-level training efficiency.” I don’t exactly know what that means and it sounds like she isn’t actually on the team (???) but maybe there is something lost in translation?
  • Get out and support the women’s basketball team! They are playing some inspired ball recently!
  • The second semester has officially started at UW and the football team is back in the weight room for winter conditioning.
  • The Wisconsin volleyball team continues to be the only bipartisan supported topic in the country.
  • After being swept by Minnesota this past weekend, the Badgers fell into a tie for third in the USCHO rankings. It has been a long time since they’ve been that low in the poll.
  • Dean Hamiti keeps on moving up in the InterMat rankings. The Badgers are also No. 10 in the Coaches Poll, the sixth Big Ten team there. In exciting non-Wisconsin news, No. 1 Penn State will wrestle No. 2 Iowa on Friday. Both squads are undefeated and have a bunch of national title contenders on their respective rosters. Should be an absolute banger.

Men’s basketball results from Monday/Tuesday

No. 10 Michigan State 55 - No. 24 Illinois 56
Maryland 68 - Rutgers 60

Women’s basketball results from Monday/Tuesday

Purdue 66 - No. 8 Michigan 79
No. 23 Iowa 107 - Penn State 79