Big Ten basketball power rankings Feb. 6

Welcome to Big Ten basketball power rankings! We’ll be posting new weekly rankings until the end of conference play. This week, our rankings are made up of eight WIUX Sports personalities: Adam Cohen (@adamcohenIU), Cole Dunbar (@Cole_Dunbar), Bobby Norell (@RENorell_III), Quinn Saturday (@QTipsforSports), Levi Snow (snowman2469), David Sugarman (Dshug24), Andrew Vailliencourt (@AndrewVcourt) and Tori Ziege (@ToriZiege).

Team Name, First Place Votes, Record, Average, High/Low

1. Wisconsin Badgers (8), (20-2, 8-1), Average: 1 High/Low: 1/1

What They’re Saying: “Frank Kaminsky is starting to pull ahead of everyone else in the Wooden Award race, as evidenced by his performance against Indiana. Sure the Hoosiers have no one big enough to stop him, but he’s been doing the same thing to every team he’s faced. On the season, he’s shooting 55 percent overall and 40 percent from deep. The Badgers are undefeated in Big Ten play with him in the lineup, losing to a cellar-dweller like Rutgers when he wasn’t available. As long as Frank the Tank continues to perform like he has, no one in the Big Ten is stopping Wisconsin. That may even extend to the rest of college basketball if he gets consistent help from his teammates.” — Quinn Saturday

2. Maryland Terrapins (19-4, 7-3) Average: 2.5, High/Low: 2/5

What They’re Saying: “Though Maryland is a very talented team, it’s  played with fire lately. And if the Terrapins continue to do so, they will eventually get cooked. 2-2 in their last four outings, the Terps lost at Indiana and Ohio State by a combined 43 points.  Their two wins came against the worst team in the conference, Northwestern, by just a single point — game in which the Terps trailed most the way and Head Coach Mark Turgeon admitted they didn’t deserve to win — and a six-point escape vs Penn State, another bottom feeder.  If Maryland wants to stay towards the top of the Big Ten, it has to put down the matches. Coming down the stretch of the Big Ten schedule, every game will be a big one.” — David Sugarman

3. Purdue Boilermakers (15-8, 7-3), Average: 3.5, High/Low: 2/5

What They’re Saying: “Boiler Up? Well it’s hard to say exactly. Purdue has won four in a row and five out of its last six. Three of the Boilermakers’ last four wins have come against top 25 teams, at least at the time — though they may have an asterix next to them. When Matt Painter’s club took down Iowa, its best player Aaron White left the game early with a shoulder injury.  Purdue then went on to beat Indiana, nothing fishy there, but then it beat Ohio State with Marc Loving, a 12-point per game scorer, newly suspended.  Regardless, Purdue’s confidence is sky-high headed into a weak part of its schedule which includes Minnesota, Nebraska and Rutgers twice: certainly an excellent chance to keep this tear it’s on alive.  You can only beat who you play, and if the Boilermakers continue that trend then it doesn’t matter who’s on the floor for the other team. So yes, Boiler Up.” — David Sugarman

4. Ohio State Buckeyes (17-6, 6-4), Average: 3.625, High/Low: 3/5

What They’re Saying: “Just a minor setback at Purdue this week. No shame in a road loss in this conference. D’Angelo Russell has been one of the best players in the country and is now being mentioned as a potential No.1 overall draft pick. With its next two games against Rutgers and Penn State, this team will remain towards the top of the standings.”  — Levi Snow

5. Michigan State Spartans (15-7, 6-3), Average: 4.5, High/Low: 3/6

What They’re Saying: “The Spartans had a nice week last week with wins over Rutgers and instate rival Michigan. Michigan State is tied for fifth in the conference with Indiana, but Tom Izzo coached teams usually get better as the season goes on. I would not be surprised to see Sparty continue its climb in the standings.” — Bobby Norell

6. Indiana Hoosiers (16-7, 6-4)Average: 6, High/Low: 5/7

What They’re Saying: “Indiana has dropped three of its last four, which really hurts them in the B1G standings. The Hoosiers are trying to keep pace with the rest of the league in the race for second because Wisconsin pretty much has a lock on first. The future may be brighter for Indiana though. The Hoosiers play five of their last eight games at home and only one ranked team in that mix when they have to play at Maryland on Feb. 11.” — Cole Dunbar

7. Iowa Hawkeyes (14-8, 5-4), Average: 7.125, High/Low: 6/8

What They’re Saying: “Iowa had a rough go of it losing three games in a row before winning decisively at Michigan 72-54. Normally three losses in a row would look bad, but the Hawkeyes had to play Wisconsin twice in that stretch with their third loss coming at Purdue. Iowa could use a couple games to get their momentum back, and that could come soon. After playing Maryland Iowa has six winnable games against the bottom six teams in the conference.” — Cole Dunbar

8. Michigan (13-10, 6-5 ), Average:  8.125, High/Low: 7/9 

What They’re Saying: “After yet another overtime loss, the wheels started to finally fall off against Iowa. This team has continued to stay alive despite all of its injuries, but the Wolverines have a very tough next five games.” — Andrew Vailliencourt

9. Illinois Fighting Illini (15-8, 5-5), Average: 8.875, High/Low: 7/10 

What They’re Saying: “Illinois has rebounded nicely since losing to Indiana a few weeks back. The Illini have won three of their last four games and currently are on a two-game winning streak. Illinois has a tough three-game stretch coming up with games at Michigan State and Wisconsin followed by a home matchup with Michigan.” — Bobby Norell

10. Nebraska Cornhuskers (13-9, 5-5), Average: 9.75, High/Low: 9/10

What They’re Saying: “After a matchup at Penn State on Saturday, the schedule gets extremely tough for the Cornhuskers, who will have to face Wisconsin at home and Purdue, Maryland and Ohio State on the road. This team has got to steal a game or else it’s going to get swallowed up like cream corn in well… Nebraska.” — Tori Ziege

T-11. Penn State Nittany Lions (14-9, 2-8), Average: 11.5, High/Low: 11/12

What They’re Saying: “Two more hard fought losses. You have to give credit to this team for competing so hard despite the lack of talent. D.J. Newbill continues to be fantastic and should be a first team all-conference player. The Nittany Lions last seven losses have been by single digits. A second scoring option would have made this team a contender.” — Levi Snow

T-11. Minnesota Golden Gophers (14-9, 3-7), Average: 11.5, High/Low: 11/12

What They’re Saying: “This team has potential but hasn’t been able to capitalize on it this season. With a difficult schedule ahead  including two games against Wisconsin, Minnesota will have a chance to pull off a huge turnaround, or at least play spoiler.” — Andrew Vailliencourt

13. Rutgers Scarlet Knights (10-14, 2-9), Average: 13.25, High/Low: 13/14

What They’re Saying: “After starting 2-2 in Big Ten play, the Scarlet Knights have lost seven straight and find themselves near the bottom of the Big Ten like we all expected. It’s a shame really, as they have some good players. Myles Mack has been inconsistent from deep, but when he’s on he’s dangerous. Kadeem Jack is an above-average scorer as well as rebounder. Head Coach Eddie Jordan has this team going in the right direction, but it’s just a shame they haven’t been that involved (besides the upset over the Kaminsky-less Badgers) in the narrative of this Big Ten season.”  — Quinn Saturday

14. Northwestern Wildcats (10-12, 1-8), Average: 13.75, High/Low: 13/14

What They’re Saying: “The Wildcats are losers of eight in a row now, and not all of them have been close. Northwestern continues to play hard but this team is not ready to compete yet. Chris Collins has the program headed in the right direction.” — Levi Snow