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Sunday Random Thoughts and Picks


- G1000 made a good point about how effective occasional full court pressure was last night against Illinois. Thumbs up to Carmody for calling for it, thumbs down to me for not mentioning it in my recap.

- Excellent performance by the student section during last night's game, capped off by a "Just like football!" chant. Hopefully that kind of support continues throughout the season.

- Mike Kafka was the MVP of the East-West Shrine game yesterday, leading a game winning drive in the final minute in front of all the NFL scouts. I'm no draft expert, so I couldn't tell you much about where he'll be picked, but he had to have helped his cause with that performance. Read more about it here.

- Things continue to get worse for Iowa State, as they were blown out at home by Kansas yesterday. Now I'm not saying Iowa State fans are upset with the coaching, but Clone Chronicles is trying to raise money to buy out Greg McDermott. Ouch.

- Michigan State rallied from a 10 point second half deficit to win at Minnesota yesterday. An impressive win for the Spartans in a hostile environment against a desperate Gophers team.

- Ohio State fell apart in the second half at West Virginia and missed out on a chance to get a marquee win for themselves and the conference. Evan Turner had another double-double but struggled with his shooting at just 6 for 17 from the field.

- Michigan is falling into disarray as John Beilein suspended Manny Harris for acting out in practice. As an aside, I just discovered what Manny is short for. If you guessed Manuel, you're wrong. If you gussed Corperryale L'Adorable, you're right. No seriously, that's his real name. Anyways, without Corperryale Michigan struggled in a loss at Purdue.

- Onto the picks for Sunday. I went 2-1-1 yesterday, and was 3 points away from a 4-0 day, except West Virginia hit two meaningless free throws in the final seconds to tie the spread, and Purdue went to the scrubs up 27 against Michigan and let them cut the deficit to 10 to beat the spread by 1. Unlucky but that's the nature of gambling.

Big Ten games: 13-11-2
Northwestern games: 9-2

Penn State at Wisconsin (-12), 1:30 PM, BTN

Since instituting the never pick against Bo Ryan rule, Wisconsin has failed to cover the spread twice in a row. And they may make it three today, as 12 points is a lot to give even against lowly Penn State. That being said, I'm still taking Wisconsin as Penn State has just been playing awful of late and the Badgers are always so tough at home. Oh yeah, and Bo Ryan vs Ed DeChellis is a huge coaching mismatch.

Pick: Wisconsin

Iowa at Indiana (-5.5), 5 PM, BTN

Tom Crean is doing a fantastic job in year 2, as he has the Hoosiers at 3-3 in league play and on a 2 game winning streak. However, Iowa has played well their last 3 games with 2 wins and a much closer than expected loss at Michigan State. While Indiana is improved, this is still the same team that lost at home to Loyola (MD), so while they will likely win this game, I don't want to give that many points.

Pick: Iowa