I just got back from a three-game stretch in Conseco, and thought I better throw some thoughts everybody's way. Here's three observations from each game:
(8) Michigan over (9) Iowa
1 - This was actually a very entertaining game. We got in at halftime and it was 32-23, I believe? Anyway, it was fast paced and both teams played decent defense.
2 - Iowa's Cully Payne played well. He may be a better prospect as a frosh PG than Indiana's Jordan Hulls.
3 - Does Michigan have a chance against Ohio State tomorrow? I doubt it.
(7) Northwestern over (10) Indiana
1 - Michael Thompson was clutch in this game. His second half barrage of treys doomed Indiana.
2 - Starting Tijan Jobe? Really? I understand him being a senior and a hard worker in practice, and Indiana really didn't play badly until 28 minutes in, but still. Jobe hasn't done anything all year. He didn't do anything today. Start Elston or Capobianco, or even Pritchard.
2a - I made a few quarter bet victories on Pritchard finally scoring in the second half. Devan Dumes didn't help me out nearly as much.
3 - Once again, Indiana falls apart down the stretch. It was really, really hard to watch this team in the second half. Just very little offense, and even less defense. It's hard to be truly optimistic when your team can't stop anybody.
(6) Minnesota vs. (11) Penn State
1 - I thought, just maybe, that Penn State could give Minny a run here. Not so much.
2 - Damian Johnson, the super-athletic forward from Minnesota, is one of my favorite guys in the entire Big Ten this year. On a team where the "name" guys are Lawrence Westbrook, Ralph Sampson The Younger, and even *bleeping* Blake Hoffarber, I think Johnson is really the man to watch.
3 - Poor Talor Battle. I guess he has an NIT title to show for his four years at Penn State. Still, without much to say for his pro prospects, it would be hard to feel good about going to PSU right now if you were Battle.
I'm pretty excited for tomorrow. It's a busy slate and should be an intense day of basketball. Let me know if there's anything you guys want from the insider (balcony) perspective.
And no, they're not selling beer at Conseco. Because the Big Ten and Indiana are full of idiots.