Busting Brackets

Big Ten Basketball: Wisconsin, Ohio State falls, Rutgers rises in latest power rankings

Wisconsin v Rutgers
Wisconsin v Rutgers / Rich Schultz/GettyImages
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8. Minnesota Gophers - 15-8 (6-6)

There was a time when we didn’t have to take the Gophers seriously as at-large contenders since they had a four-game losing streak in Big Ten play. On cue, they decided to win three straight games, including wins over currently projected teams, Northwestern and Michigan State. 

The win over the Wildcats came in overtime, while freshman guard Cam Christie had 19 points in the 59-56 victory over the Spartans. Minnesota had a chance to make it four straight wins and a chance to get on the bubble, leading Iowa last weekend by around 20 points after a 51-point first-half effort. 

However, the Gophers gave up 52 points in the second half to blow the lead and lose the game, 90-85. Four players had 15+ points in the game, with Dawson Garcia and Braeden Carrington each going for 18 points. It’s another blown lead for them, one that likely dooms their NCAA Tournament hopes.

That being said, it’s clear that Minnesota is much improved this season and is a threat to finish in the top 4 of the Big Ten standings. They do have a road game at Purdue coming up next but after that are a pair of winnable home battles with Rutgers and Ohio State.