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Big Ten MBB Bracketology: Some focus, some confusion

What’s going on?!

COLLEGE BASKETBALL: JAN 16 Purdue at Michigan State Photo by Adam Ruff/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

We are now midway through January, and the Big Ten postseason picture is starting to become clear. But, at the same time, there are some teams in and out of the NCAA tournament bubble that were unexpected a few months ago, and the Big Ten as a whole is close. Here’s who is on track to make March Madness.

Note: The following rankings are as of Jan. 17.

Tournament Locks

Purdue Boilermakers

ESPN: One seed

After a big win in East Lansing against Michigan State, Joe Lunardi has Purdue as a one seed and number two overall.

CBS: One seed

Similar to ESPN, Purdue is the number two team overall. Consensus one seed

The Boilermakers have an average seed of 1.01 across 75 brackets, and it’s rare to not see them as a one seed currently.

Rutgers Scarlet Knights

ESPN: Five seed

Rutgers moves up over big wins against Northwestern and Ohio State in the past week.

CBS: Five seed

CBS has Rutgers in the same exact spot as ESPN: five seed in the Midwest. Consensus five seed

Rutgers is ranked as high as a three seed and as low as a seven seed, with an average of 5.80.

Illinois Fighting Illini

ESPN: Five seed

The Fighting Illini move up in Lunardi’s bracket and are in the midst of a four-game win streak.

CBS: Six seed

If the bracket stayed like this, CBS has Illinois facing Kentucky in a mouth-watering first round matchup. Consensus six seed

Illinois has an average seed of 6.43 across 75 sites.

On the Right Path

Michigan State Spartans

ESPN: Seven seed

Lunardi has the Spartans trending down after a home loss to Purdue.

CBS: Seven seed

Michigan State borders a seven and eight seed for CBS. Consensus seven seed

The Spartans experience fluctuation across 74 sites, with a high of six seed and a low of 11 seed.

Wisconsin Badgers

ESPN: Ten seed

The Badgers are on the down and are currently one of the last four byes according to Lunardi.

CBS: Eight seed

CBS has Wisconsin higher than ESPN as the first eight seed. Consensus eight seed

The Badgers are as high as a seven and as low as a 12 across 72 sites.

Iowa Hawkeyes

ESPN: Seven seed

Though their game against Northwestern was cancelled, the Hawkeyes have been trending upward on ESPN.

CBS: Eight seed

CBS also has Iowa moving up, but they are an eight seed as opposed to a seven. Consensus eight seed

Iowa has an average seed of 8.75 on 71 sites.

On the Right Side of the Bubble

Penn State Nittany Lions

ESPN: 11 seed

Lunardi has Penn State as one of the last four in, with a play-in against Boise State.

CBS: Nine seed

CBS gives the Nittany Lions a bye, but a tough matchup against Missouri. Consensus 10 seed

48 sites have currently have Penn State in their bracket, with an average seed of 10.75.

Maryland Terrapins

ESPN: 11 seed

Lunardi has the Terps descending, but they still make the field of 68.

CBS: 11 seed (last four in)

Similar to ESPN, Maryland is an 11 seed, but it has to play a first four game in the CBS bracket. Consensus nine seed

69 sites have the Terps in their bracket, with an average seed of 9.67.

Indiana Hoosiers

ESPN: 11 seed

Indiana is an 11 seed like Maryland, and the Hoosiers escape with one of the last byes

CBS: 11 seed (last four in)

CBS has Indiana in the same situation as Maryland: an 11 seed with a first four matchup. Consensus nine seed

The Hoosiers have an average seed of 9.39 across 69 sites.

Ohio State Buckeyes

ESPN: Nine seed

Though they are off to a slow start in the Big Ten, the Buckeyes make the tournament in Lunardi’s latest bracket as a nine seed.

CBS: Not qualified

CBS has the Buckeyes missing out completely. Consensus eight seed

Ohio State has an average seed of 8.64.

Northwestern Wildcats

ESPN: First four out

After two consecutive losses to Rutgers and Michigan, Lunardi has the Wildcats slightly missing out.

CBS: 10 seed

CBS has Northwestern making the tournament with a bye, setting them up for a matchup with Chris Collins’ former squad in Duke in the first round. Consensus ten seed

The Wildcats have an average seeding of 10.60 across the 55 sites that have them in.

Outside looking in:

Michigan, Nebraska, Minnesota