Yesterday was a fantastic day for the Big Ten. The comfortable wins by Ohio State and Purdue were no surprise, but the blowout wins by Illinois and Michigan in the 8/9 games were very impressive. The Big Ten is tough, and both Penn State and MSU, the only casualties so far, took their games down to the wire.
Games of interest today:
(4) Kentucky v. (5) West Virginia, 12:15, CBS: This game is a rematch of last year's regional final, a game in which the Mountaineers saved Indianapolis from an influx of Kentucky fans. I'll be eternally grateful. This is one of the rare matchups in which Bob Huggins holds the moral high ground. Go hillbillies, beat the hilljacks. Or is it the other way around?
(1) Pittsburgh v. (8) Butler, 7:10, TBS: Pitt has become one of the most successful programs in college basketball over the last decade, but the missing piece has been NCAA Tournament success. The Panthers have won plenty of games in March under Ben Howland and Jamie Dixon, but haven't made it to the Final Four. Pitt now faces NCAA runner-up Butler in round two. The Bulldogs won their first round game against Old Dominion on a last second shot, but now face a much tougher task. This will be an interesting game.
(4) Wisconsin v. (5) Kansas State, 8:40, TNT: The Badgers are the Big Ten's version of Pitt--lots of regular season success, but no Final Four appearances under Bo Ryan. The Badgers face Kansas State, a team that had an up-and-down season this year, but was very good last year until losing to Butler in the regional final.