Big Ten Weekly Five: 05.09.12 Edition

Posted by jnowak on May 9th, 2012

  1. Plenty of Big Ten programs have undergone change in the last few months, and that includes Tubby Smith’s program at Minnesota. The most important news is that Trevor Mbakwe will return for another season, giving the Gophers a shot at finishing near the top of the conference standings next season. They’ll return some good young talent, and with a new athletic director at the helm, this group could finally be ready for a break-through. Amelia Rayno helps to catch us up.
  2. Indiana is such a hot spot now that it’s become a game of musical chairs to find open scholarships. Matt Roth seems to be the odd man out at the moment, though he still remains hopeful that something will open up for his fifth season with the Hoosiers. As Terry Hutchens points out, Roth is eligible for another season as a medical redshirt, but a scholarship would have to become available on a roster that is already over-committed by one player. His other option is to walk on and pay out-of-state tuition.
  3. It looks like Michigan State‘s modus operandi of scheduling some of the top non-conference opponents in the country will continue yet again for Tom Izzo’s group. It was announced recently that the Spartans will host Texas at Breslin Center this upcoming season.  The Spartans, who have played Rick Barnes’ team semi-regularly over the last decade or so, already also have Kansas on the schedule as part of the Champions Classic in Atlanta on November 13.
  4. There’s no area more important to Illinois recruiting than Chicago, so there may not be an assistant coach more valuable to John Groce’s staff than Isaac Chew. Per this Chicago Tribune story, Chew has become Groce’s go-to man in the Windy City. The Chicago native has quickly risen through the ranks at Murray State and Missouri, and now has the opportunity to make his mark — and help Groce do so, as well — in Champaign.
  5. Wisconsin and coach Bo Ryan received some unwanted attention this spring with the news surrounding Jarrod Uthoff and his desire to transfer elsewhere. The issue was finally resolved, but not until after the program’s image took a significant public relations hit. The Journal Sentinel‘s Jeff Potrykus recognizes that fact, but still believes Ryan and the program can recover quickly from the incident.
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