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Big Ten Basketball Week 6 Power Rankings

Publish Date: 12/18/2023
Fact checked by: Simon Briffa

Week 6

Week six saw Northwestern lose to Chicago State, which was a huge upset. We saw Ohio State pick up a big win, and Purdue solidified themselves at number one with a victory over the top-ranked Arizona Wildcats.

14) Penn State Nittany Lions

Penn State was defeated in New York against Georgia Tech on Saturday in their sole matchup this week, falling 5-6 overall and falling in overtime in an impressive contest. Unfortunately for Penn State they came up short.

Video: Georgia Tech at Penn State | Highlights | Big Ten Men's Basketball | Dec. 16, 2023

Georgia Tech at Penn State | Highlights | Big Ten Men’s Basketball | Dec. 16, 2023

13) Iowa Hawkeyes

Iowa rebounded after an emotionally taxing week by defeating Florida A&M at home on Saturday in an absolute blowout, taking advantage of many bench players. Iowa now stands at 6-5 overall after this win.

Video: Florida A&M at Iowa | Highlights | Big Ten Men's Basketball | Dec. 16, 2023

Florida A&M at Iowa | Highlights | Big Ten Men’s Basketball | Dec. 16, 2023

12) Minnesota Golden Gophers

The Minnesota Gophers won their only game this week against IUPUI at home on Tuesday in a dominant performance that moved them to 8-3 overall and 1-1 in Big Ten play – this win marked Minnesota’s third straight victory following some slip-ups during November.

Video: IUPUI at Minnesota | Highlights | Big Ten Men's Basketball | Dec. 12, 2023

IUPUI at Minnesota | Highlights | Big Ten Men’s Basketball | Dec. 12, 2023

11) Maryland Terrapins

Maryland won its only game this week by crushing Alcorn State at home by 40 points on Tuesday evening – becoming 6-4 overall and 1-1 in conference play; not to be overlooked is their recent string of five straight victories in their last six games.

Video: Alcorn St. at Maryland | Highlights | Big Ten Men's Basketball | Dec. 12, 2023

Alcorn St. at Maryland | Highlights | Big Ten Men’s Basketball | Dec. 12, 2023

10) Michigan Wolverines

As a program, Michigan basketball is a mess, the Wolverines won their lone game of the week, but coach Juwan Howard is under investigation for fighting his strength coach.

Video: E. Michigan at Michigan | Highlights | Big Ten Men's Basketball | Dec. 16, 2023

E. Michigan at Michigan | Highlights | Big Ten Men’s Basketball | Dec. 16, 2023

9) Rutgers Scarlet Knights

Rutgers secured its only victory this week against LIU on Saturday at home, raising their overall record to 7-3 and giving the Scarlet Knights two consecutive wins after an inconsistent December.

Video: LIU at Rutgers | Highlights | Big Ten Men's Basketball | Dec. 16, 2023

LIU at Rutgers | Highlights | Big Ten Men’s Basketball | Dec. 16, 2023

8) Indiana Hoosiers

The Indiana Hoosiers lost their only game this week against Kansas yet still had something of a “moral victory”. The game was highly competitive, with Indiana coming just short in the closing minutes.

Indiana has had a curious first ten games. Of their three losses so far, all have come against top 10 opponents, according to KenPom – with Kansas being their latest on Saturday. That doesn’t exactly make things terrible, but their wins don’t stand out either; their best victory likely came at home against Maryland, which is struggling.

Video: No. 2 Kansas vs. Indiana: College Basketball Extended Highlights | CBS Sports

No. 2 Kansas vs. Indiana: College Basketball Extended Highlights | CBS Sports

7) Northwestern Wildcats

Northwestern had an underwhelming week. Though they split their games, one loss in particular stood out: Northwestern fell at home against a poor Chicago State team on Wednesday and rebounded with an away victory against DePaul on Saturday, but this hardly made up for what the Chicago State loss meant to their resume.

Video: #25 Northwestern vs Chicago State Highlights | NCAA Men's Basketball | 2023 College Basketball

#25 Northwestern vs Chicago State Highlights | NCAA Men’s Basketball | 2023 College Basketball

6) Michigan State Spartans

Michigan State’s Spartans were victorious in their only game last week, trouncing a top 10 Baylor team in Detroit to climb roughly 30 spots in NET rankings in one afternoon – taking them from 5-5 overall to an overall record of 6-5 after this impressive triumph.

Video: 12/16/2023 - Michigan State 88 Baylor 64 Cinematic Highlights

12/16/2023 – Michigan State 88 Baylor 64 Cinematic Highlights

5) Nebraska Cornhuskers

Nebraska had an outstanding week, winning their only road matchup against Kansas State on Sunday to improve to 9-2 overall and claim a top-100 opponent victory.

Nebraska should feel good about their progress through 11 games. Though not elite, Nebraska has shown promise and avoided missteps; beating Kansas State was another step in the right direction. If Nebraska can continue winning as expected, they could qualify for the NCAA Tournament action in March.

Video: Kansas State Basketball | Highlights from the Wildcats' 62-46 loss to Nebraska | December 17, 2023

Kansas State Basketball | Highlights from the Wildcats’ 62-46 loss to Nebraska | December 17, 2023

4) Wisconsin Badgers

Wisconsin secured their only victory this week by defeating Jacksonville State at home on Thursday evening, improving to 8-3 overall and they are still unbeaten in Big Ten play.

This week is expected to be relatively relaxed for Wisconsin with just one game on Friday at home against Chicago State, who don’t appear great on paper but recently upset Northwestern on the raod, so maybe they can give Madison another scare? Don’t hold your breath though it’s hard to win in Madison.

Video: #23 Wisconsin vs Jacksonville State Highlights | NCAA Men's Basketball | 2023 College Basketball

#23 Wisconsin vs Jacksonville State Highlights | NCAA Men’s Basketball | 2023 College Basketball

3) Ohio State Buckeyes

Ohio State won its only game last week against UCLA in Atlanta on Saturday – it was an intense battle, and Ohio State managed to pull off an upset win, improving to 9-2 with this victory.

Ohio State will resume action this Thursday against New Orleans at home, hoping a victory can set up an engaging showdown against West Virginia at Cleveland to close out their year.

Video: UCLA vs Ohio State Highlights | NCAA Men's Basketball | 2023 College Basketball

UCLA vs Ohio State Highlights | NCAA Men’s Basketball | 2023 College Basketball

2) Illinois Fighting Illini

Only Purdue has played a tougher schedule than the Illini. Illinois won its only game this week against Colgate at home on Sunday afternoon to extend their record to 8-2 overall. Illinois remains one of the strongest teams in the Big Ten Conference and is suited to earning another NCAA bid.

Video: Colgate at Illinois | Highlights | Big Ten Men's Basketball | Dec. 17, 2023

Colgate at Illinois | Highlights | Big Ten Men’s Basketball | Dec. 17, 2023

1) Purdue Boilermakers

The Purdue Boilermakers had another outstanding week, upstaging top-ranked Arizona in an incredible battle in Indy on Saturday to improve to 10-1 overall and winning three in a row since losing in overtime against Northwestern early in December.

Purdue fans must be delighted with the team’s 11-game performance to date. Even after an unexpected misstep against Northwestern, Purdue likely boasts one of the strongest resumes in college basketball with four victories against top 10 KenPom teams and seven against top 100 KenPom opponents. If they can maintain this momentum into late-December and beyond, some fantastic things lie ahead for this squad.

Video: #1 Arizona vs Purdue Highlights | NCAA Men's Basketball | 2023 College Basketball

#1 Arizona vs Purdue Highlights | NCAA Men’s Basketball | 2023 College Basketball

 

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