B1G primed for March Madness dominance


Brentton Wharton, staff writer

With March Madness being just a little under a month away, it seems right to start looking into which teams have the potential to go all the way and win the whole thing this year. What’s standing out to me is not one team in particular, but a conference.

Right now the Big Ten looks like they will be the conference with the most teams bidded into the tournament this year, and I expect that will hold true when the tournament is here. The Big Ten Conference is poised to win Selection Sunday. 

The Big Ten is currently projected to have nine teams in the field of 68, which is two more than any other conference. The league also has four teams in the NET top 10, which is one of the rankings the selection committee uses to determine the bracket.

Because of the strength of the league as a whole, it won’t just be bubble teams benefiting. Michigan would have to go on a disastrous losing streak to lose their current choke hold on a number 1 seed, especially after beating Ohio State 91-87 Sunday.

Meanwhile, Ohio State and Illinois are both out front with number 2 seeds, with Iowa close behind at a number 3 seed. With Wisconsin as a projected number 5 seed, that gives the Big Ten five teams ready to notch top-five seeds.

Add on top of that Purdue, who are projected a number 7 seed, Rutgers a projected number 8 seed, and Minnesota a projected number 9 seed. That is eight teams for the BIg Ten, who are all projected to be seeded in the top 10 of their respective regions.

And last but not least there’s Indiana, a projected 12 seed that just adds the cherry on top. With a good collection of top teams and a lower seeded team the Big Ten are in good position to both run the table and pull a few upsets. I will say right now that I will not be shocked if the Final Four of March Madness is four teams from the Big Ten. Michigan, Iowa, Ohio State and Illinois are all plenty capable of winning their regions, and if those four teams do that they will advance to the Final Four. 

This is definitely the year for a Big Ten team to add another trophy to their case, no matter which team it is. It’s rare that we ever see a March Madness tournament stacked with this much firepower, from one section of the country, one conference. Fans of any of these Big Ten teams in position to make the tournament have all the reason to be confident.