[ONE // saturday super for illini hoops and penn state hockey]

The fourth annual “Super Saturday – College Hoops & Hockey” doubleheader took place on Saturday at Madison Square Garden with Illinois upsetting No. 13 Maryland 78-67, while Penn State defeated Michigan 5-2 in men’s ice hockey action.  Ayo Dosunmu scored 20 points to help the Fighting Illini snap a two-game skid by handing the No. 13 Terrapins their second straight conference loss. Tevian Jones had 18 points, and Andres Feliz had 15. Maryland was led by Bruno Fernando who had 19 points and 10 rebounds.  Later that night, first star Evan Barratt tallied three points on a goal and two assists as the No. 15 Nittany Lions topped the Wolverines before 9,271 fans. Alex Limoges scored two goals while Liam Folkes and Alec Marsh added the other Nittany Lion goals. Peyton Jones made 35 saves for Penn State, including 22 in the first period.


[TWO // boilers stun spartans, badgers’ happ registers another triple-double]

Despite picking up a 69-55 win against No. 13 Maryland on Monday and following with an 82-67 victory at Iowa on Thursday, Big Ten leader and sixth-ranked Michigan State fell at Purdue on Sunday, 73-63. It marked the Boilermakers’ first win over an opponent ranked that high since Feb. 20, 2011, when No. 11-ranked Purdue beat No. 2-ranked Ohio State.  Michigan State fell to 9-1 in the Big Ten, just ahead of Michigan (8-1), Purdue (7-2), Maryland (7-3) and Wisconsin (6-3).  The Badgers scored league wins over Illinois and Northwestern, with the latter game including UW’s Ethan Happ’s second triple-double (13 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists) of the season.


[THREE // iowa earns top-20 win over rutgers]

Just as the Michigan State men’s basketball team was taken from the unbeaten ranks in league play this past week, so too were the Rutgers Scarlet Knights, who fell 72-66 at Iowa in women’s basketball action on Wednesday.  The No. 17/15 Hawkeyes’ Megan Gustafson poured in 32 points and grabbed 12 rebounds in the victory, which gave No. 14/18 Rutgers its first loss in the past 11 games.  Just behind 8-1 Rutgers is Iowa and No. 11/10 Maryland in a second-place tie at 7-2.  The Terps scored a 70-57 win at Ohio State in its lone Big Ten game this past week.


[FOUR // four women’s standouts named to naismith defensive player of the year watch list]

Four Big Ten women’s basketball students have been named to the 15-person Naismith Defensive Player of the Year Watch List announced Friday by the Atlanta Tipoff Club. Iowa’s Megan Gustafson, Maryland’s Shakira Austin, Minnesota’s Kenisha Bell and Purdue’s Ae’Rianna Harris appeared on the midseason watch list for the award presented to the country’s top defensive player.


[FIVE // notre dame inches closer to ohio state in hockey standings]

The aforementioned 5-2 victory that Penn State earned over Michigan at Madison Square Garden made it a push for both teams this past week, as the Wolverines defended their home ice on Thursday with a 5-1 victory over the Nittany Lions.  On Friday, Notre Dame topped Michigan State 6-3, while Minnesota outlasted Wisconsin in a high-scoring affair, 9-4.  The Badgers would respond on Saturday with a 4-3 victory over the Golden Gophers, while Notre Dame scored a 1-0 shutout victory after tying Michigan State 1-1 in overtime.  At week’s end, Ohio State leads the Big Ten standings with 29 points, followed by Notre Dame (25), Minnesota (24), Michigan (21) and Penn State, Wisconsin and Michigan State with 20 points each.


[SIX // gymnastics conference action underway]

Conference action continued in women’s gymnastics this past week, while the men opened their league schedule.  In men’s competition, Illinois defeated Iowa 410.450-398.800, Michigan beat Minnesota 413.150-408.300, and Penn State topped Nebraska 409.700-395.00.  In non-conference action, Ohio State fell to the defending national champions and top-ranked Oklahoma, 423.950-395.400.  In women’s action Friday, Iowa defeated Rutgers 194.575-191.625, Michigan bested Maryland 196.400-193.525, Nebraska topped Illinois 197.250-194.675, and while Penn State notched its highest overall score since 2016, No. 22 Minnesota edged the Nittany Lions, 196.925-196.775.  In the lone contest on Saturday, Ohio State beat Michigan State, 196.200-195.225.


[SEVEN // big ten to be represented at super bowl]

Eighteen former Big Ten players will be vying for a Super Bowl ring when the New England Patriots and the Los Angeles Rams meet in Super Bowl LIII on Sunday, Feb. 3. At least one representative from 11 of the conference’s schools will be on the sidelines this upcoming weekend, according to The list, which doesn’t include Maryland, Nebraska or Rutgers names who played before schools entered the Big Ten, is headlined by New England QB Tom Brady (Michigan), who is playing in his ninth Super Bowl and is the NFL’s leader in championships (5).  Click here for the full list of Big Ten names on Super Bowl LIII teams.


[EIGHT // fifth autonomy session concludes at the ncaa convention]

For the fifth year in a row, representatives of the Autonomy Five conferences met at the NCAA’s annual convention to approve additional protections and benefits for students who play intercollegiate sports.  This year, schools voted to require that institutions make mental health services and resources available for student-athletes, and passed a resolution committing the five conferences to bring forward legislation that will redefine rules concerning agents and advisors to assist student-athletes with career planning and decision making.


[NINE // a hoosier returns home]

Indiana Vice President and Director of Athletics Fred Glass announced this past Tuesday that Kayla Bashore has become the new head coach of the Indiana Field Hockey program. A former IU Big Ten Player of the Year, two-time All-American and two-time Olympian, Bashore arrives with eight years of collegiate coaching experience, most recently as an assistant coach at Brown University.  During her Indiana playing career, she received numerous awards including Big Ten Player of the Year (2005), NFCA All-American (2003 & 2005), first-team All-Big Ten (2002, 2003, 2005), the Arthur Ashe Sportsmanship & Leadership Award (2003), and the IU Balfour Award (2001).  Following her All-America playing career for the Hoosiers, Bashore went on to a highly-successful eight-year run at the international level as a national team member with USA Field Hockey, participating in 175 international competitions. Highlighting her stint with Team USA was the opportunity to compete in the 2008 and 2012 Olympics, where her teams placed eighth and 12th, respectively.


[TEN // around the league]

Finally this week, a few news and notes from around the league… ESPN College Game Day announced its return to East Lansing for the Michigan State men’s basketball game against Indiana on Saturday, Feb. 2.  After 75 Grand Slam tournaments, former Illini All-American Rajeev Ram clinched his first Grand Slam title with partner Barbora Krejcíková at the Australian Open on Saturday morning.  The Ohio State men’s and women’s tennis programs as well as the Northwestern women’s squad have earned a spot in the ITA National Indoor Team Championships.  In addition, several Big Ten programs saw individuals set school marks in track and field this past week, but it was Purdue that reset two top times in the nation this season in a very big way.