EAST LANSING, Mich. — Like plenty of other conferences throughout the NCAA this season, the Big Ten standings are a hot mess.
Two teams, the Purdue Boilermakers and Ohio State Buckeyes, are a perfect 7-0 in conference play. While many expected Purdue to be in the thick of things, the work that Chris Holtmann has done with Ohio State is stellar in year one. Six teams below them are within four games of the conference lead, but no team is within 2.5 games of the leaders.
The middle of the conference is a log jam, and two teams will go head-to-head on Friday night to try and gain a bit of separation from the pack. In East Lansing, the Michigan State Spartans and Indiana Hoosiers will square off in a battle of two teams trending in opposite directions.
Just over a week ago, the Spartans were the top-ranked team in the country. Now, after two losses over their last three games, Michigan State comes in ranked ninth in the country. On the flip side, the Hoosiers suffered two losses to in-state opponents on their home floor in non-conference play, but are riding a three game winning streak into the Breslin Center.
INDIANAPOLIS, In. — Another year is in full swing, and another edition of the Crossroads Classic is upon us.
For the last six seasons, the Butler Bulldogs, Purdue Boilermakers, Notre Dame Fighting Irish, and Indiana Hoosiers have all ascended on BankersLife Fieldhouse for a two-game showcase. With two teams from the Big Ten, the Hoosiers and Boilermakers alternate opponents each season. The 2017 edition marks the seventh edition of the event, and it shouldn’t disappoint.
Notre Dame and Indiana enter Saturday’s showdown with identical 3-3 records in the event. The Hoosiers hold a 2-1 edge over the Fighting Irish in their head-to-head match-ups. They last met in 2015, with the Hoosiers scoring an 80-73 win over Notre Dame.
On Saturday, both teams will be looking for a big win that could get them back on the right track after some shaky moments early in the 2017-18 season.