Big Ten Women’s Basketball Tournament: Predictions

Written March 6th, 2014 by Charles

530d04f07f6f8.preview-300With the Big Ten Women’s Basketball Tournament getting underway today at Conseco Fieldhouse, I mean Banker’s Life Fieldhouse or whatever it is called now, in Indianapolis, some of us here at tBBC sat down to make our predictions for what will happen in the tournament.  Ohio State enters the tournament as the 8th seed with a 15-17 record and will need to make it to the championship game in order to qualify for the WNIT, need to finish the season with a .500 record or better; of course if they win the tournament they will be headed to the big dance.  The road for the team will be difficult but anything is possible come tournament time.  Check out our predictions below for what will happen in each of the tournament’s 11 games.

Ken

Game 1: Ohio State vs Northwestern

Ohio State. A very winnable game for both teams,  but i think OSU pulls together to get this win. The Buckeyes may not play 40 minutes of good basketball, but 30 minutes should be enough.

Game 2: Iowa vs Illinois
Iowa. Ohio State lost (twice) to Iowa but beat Illinois.
Game 3: Michigan vs Indiana
Michigan: Buckeyes split with Michigan, but beat Indiana. TTUN moves to next round.
Game 4: Minnesota vs Wisconsin
Minnesota. Buckeyes lost to both teams. We had the Wisconsin game but let it get away, we were never really in the Minnesota game.
Game 5: Penn State vs Ohio State
Penn State. The Buckeyes got drilled in both meetings this season, PSU will get the hat trick.
Game 6: Purdue vs Iowa
Iowa. The Hawkeyes lost by 1 point in previous meeting of these team; they had this game until the last few seconds. This one will not slip away from them.
Game 7: Michigan State vs Michigan
Michigan State. The Spartans handled Michigan in regular season and will do so again. Spartans are #2 seed for a reason.. they’re good.
Game 8: Nebraska vs Minnesota
Nebraska. They beat Minnesota in OT in regular season, but won’t need overtime this game. Nebraska is just too high-scoring.
Game 9: Semi-final: Penn State vs Iowa
Penn State. This will be a very good game. The teams split the regular season, but I think that Maggie Lucas has a big game for Nits.
Game 10: Semi-final: Michigan State vs Nebraska
Nebraska. This will be another very good game. Huskers are a toss-up for me; the teams split the season series and are playing very well right now.
Game 11: – Championship Game: Penn State vs Nebraska
Penn State. In February Nebraska beat PSU by 20 points, when they shot 57% from the field and  73% (16-22) from the perimeter. They normally shoot 44% and 37%, respectively. They will not duplicate that in this game.

WVaBuckeye

BiAZs73CIAARZMnGame 1: Ohio State vs Northwestern
The Buckeyes will take care of business in this one and may gain some momentum for their next match-up with a team they cannot stand! Look for newly crowned All-B1G Alstn to go off yet again on the Mildcats
Game 2: Iowa vs Illinois
The Illini will take this one simply because Iowa has been running out of gas much like the Buckeyes.
Game 3: Michigan vs Indiana
I never pick TTUN to win in anything even if it means i lose a pool or something.
Game 4: Minnesota vs Wisconsin
This is the match-up of the tourneys first few games, great match-up and the winner could have the inside track to get to final. Going with my gut here, Minny has plaid better down the stretch, great shooting team.
Game 5: Penn State vs Ohio State
One other thing I never  do, to a fault, is pick against the Buckeyes, This is a huge opportunity for Coach McGuff to really display his coaching skills that got him the job to begin with, slow it down and make PSU defend the perimiter. I am hoping Adams shows up for just this game. Buckeyes in a shocker
Game 6: Purdue vs Illinois
I went against the grain in picking the Illini before, not going to do it here, Purdue is playing decent basketball and is one of the better defensive teams in the B1G. Boiler overload
Game 7: Michigan State vs Indiana
Michigan State. The hoosiers handled TTUN easily in the first round but will get smoked here spending all they had on the Wolverweenies. Sparty Rolls into semis.
Game 8: Nebraska vs Minnesota
Both Cornhuskers programs are playing B1G basketball now and as good as the men’s have become compared to where they were? The women are better. No surprise here as Nebrasky dismantles Minny.
Game 9: Semi-final: Ohio State vs Purdue
The Buckeyes hung with the Boilers for almost an entire game in Columbus, and got throttled in West Lafayette. The difference here will be the Buckeyes can smell a chance to get to the NCAA’s or the WNIT. To secure the latter, they will need o win this game to get above .500, lose and their season is done for sure. Buckeyes in the upset
Game 10: Semi-final: Michigan State vs Nebraska
This will be the best game of the B1G and for all intents and purposes be the championship game, and it should. Both teams have been stellar on the season and will enjoy deep runs in the NCAAs, possibly representing the B1G in the Final Four, we’ll see. I really like this Nebraska team tho and they win in a close one, maybe even OT.
Hopefully WVaBuckeye is right and we'll get to see a scene like this.

Hopefully WVaBuckeye is right and we’ll get to see a scene like this.

Game 11: – Championship Game: Ohio State vs Nebraska

Ameryst Alston cemented her All-B1G honors as a first teamer because of her 31 points against Nebraska at home on February 20th, her output was enough to scare the Huskers and cause them to slow down and play keep away in the second half from her. If Ellerbe, Moore, and Ferguson could have stayed out of foul trouble, the Buckeyes might have pulled off another upset. Neither of the the three scored in double figures or saw their regular amount of playing time. The Buckeyes win here? They’re in the NCAA’s, and like I said, I never pick against the Buckeyes!

Charles

Game 1: Ohio State vs Northwestern
In their meeting earlier this season, Ohio State played a great first 30 minutes of basketball and then held on over the last 10 minutes to pull off the victory.  Expect something similar to happen in this one as the Buckeyes get it done.
Game 2: Iowa vs Illinois
Despite nearly being upset by Ohio State a week ago and nearly falling to Michigan before that, Iowa hasn’t lost to a team that is not currently ranked since January 2nd while Illinois has lost 10 straight.  The Hawkeyes crushed the Illini in the regular season finale, look for the same thing to happen here.
Game 3: Michigan vs Indiana
With this game being played in Indianapolis you would think it would be a home game for the Hoosiers but from my experience at the tournament in years past, not many people care about Indiana women’s basketball.  After starting the season off really well, Indiana has struggled in Big Ten play and has lost 5 of their last 6 while Michigan has gotten into a pattern of losing two games, getting some wins, losing two games, getting some wins.  The Wolverines come into this one on a two game losing streak so we all know what comes next.
Game 4: Minnesota vs Wisconsin
A matchup of rivals in the first round should be exciting but when it is the 6 vs 11 game, yeah, not so much.  The Badgers have been awful this year but have played the Gophers fairly well.  Wisconsin will keep it interesting but Minnesota will come away with a 10 point victory.
Game 5: Penn State vs Ohio State
I wish I had the same confidence that WVaBuckeye has but unfortunately Penn State is too good this year and OSU has struggled in quick turnarounds due to being shorthanded.  Playing on back-to-back days is the definition of a quick turnaround and the Nittany Lions should win this one comfortably even though the Buckeyes will fight.
Game 6: Purdue vs Iowa
Unlike Indiana, people do care about Purdue women’s basketball and B1G tournament games in Indy are default home games for the Boilermakers, much to my everlasting annoyance (I really, really hate Purdue women’s basketball but that is a rant for another time).  Purdue won a nailbited when these two teams met in West Lafayette a few weeks ago and I am tempted to pick Iowa for revenge but the Boilermakers, thanks to that defacto home game status, always seem to rise to the occassion in the tournament and they’ll somehow pull off another win in this one.
Game 7: Michigan State vs Michigan
Michigan State won a close one in Ann Arbor back in January and the Spartan’s strong defense will frustrate a Michigan team that will be a bit tired from the previous day.  Under head coach Suzy Merchant the Spartans have pretty much followed a script of win one in the tournament and then lose, they take care of the first part of that script in this one.
Game 8: Nebraska vs Minnesota
Bo Pelini wishes that he could have the success in the Big Ten that the Nebraska women’s basketball team has had; while the Cornhuskers haven’t won a Big Ten title in either sport, the women have come close more often.  Minnesota gave the Cornhuskers a major challenge in Lincoln back in January, forcing overtime before losing by 3.  This one is a tossup as the Cornhuskers haven’t played great lately and got thoroughly beaten by Purdue in the regular season finale.  However, I’m picking Nebraska to win another close, overtime game as playing two close games in two days will be too much for Minnesota.
Game 9: Semi-final: Penn State vs Purdue
Before Ohio State reasserted their Big Ten dominance in 2005, these two teams were the dominant teams in the conference and had built up a nice rivalry.  They split their regular season meetings with the home team winning each time.  This is a defacto home game for the Boilermakers so the edge goes to them.
Game 10: Semi-final: Michigan State vs Nebraska
This will be a great matchup between two teams with very different styles.  Michigan State loves defense while Nebraska loves to score.  They split their regular season meetings with the road team pulling off the win each time.  While I know I should just expect MSU to follow the script and lose this one, the Spartans have played better basketball down the stretch so I’m going to go out on a limb and predict the defensive team to come out on top in this one.
Game 11: – Championship Game: Purdue vs Michigan State
This should be another great game.  MSU won the only meeting between these teams this year but that was in East Lansing and Purdue will have the backing of their fans in this one.  However the rest of the fans in attendance will be behind the Spartans.  While I would hate to have to hear Sparty fans crow about how they own the Big Ten if they win this one, my hatred of Purdue burns with the heat of a thousand stars (being an Astronomer means I know just how much heat that is).  The Boilermakers somehow pull off a close one and the swearing you hear will be me all the way in Sydney.

2 Comments

  1. WVaBuckeyeNo Gravatar
    March 7th, 2014 at 2:11 pm

    wow was I wrong about them slowing things down against PSU, HUGE win for this program and Coach McGuff

    [Reply]

  2. KenNo Gravatar
    March 7th, 2014 at 2:59 pm

    Good grief. Where was this play this season?

    [Reply]

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